Great Book for Athletes with Diabetes

Not sure if you knew about this…

Sheri Colberg recently revised, updated, and expanded her 2001 book, Diabetic Athlete’s Handbook: Your Guide to Peak Performance. Dr. Colberg has a PhD in exercise physiology, is a Diabetes Health board member, and is herself an athlete with diabetes. Her book draws upon the experiences of hundreds of athletes with diabetes to provide the best advice for exercisers with diabetes, either type 1 or type 2.

Read more about it:

If you are interested in the book, you can buy it by following this link. If you do so, a percentage of the sale will go back to help the Diabetes Hands Foundation:
Diabetic Athlete’s Handbook

This is really an exceptional book and has been beneficial to me. Many trainers and other fitness books have no clue to the challenges of effective fitness has on folks with Type 1.

Alot of educators and health pro’s use this as a guideline.
I have found vast amounts of info for myself as I train for marathons and endurance cycling events.
I can’t recomend this read enough,

Does the book cover martial arts (aikido, karate, jujitsu, capoeira, krav maga, tae kwan do, hsing yi, pa kwa, wu shu, etc., etc.) more decently? The original version was horribly generic as I recall it. Now hopefully with easier access to expereinced diabetic folks -hopeful smile-


I’m not a martial artist, but I have the book and I see coverage of the subject. Maybe you could borrow it from the library and decide if it’s worth your money.
Honestly, though, you’ve listed nine different practices. (then said etc.) You can’t expect them all to be covered in detail. If you want more specific coverage of a particular martial art, you may have to write the book for your own specialty.
Is how each of these relates to diabetes is so different?
Incidentally, the author reached out to the diabetic community and collected stories and ideas from any willing diabetic athletes before writing both editions of her book. If you contact her with information, I’m sure you could get something into the next edition.

It’s a fantastic book. On Team WILD we have all our staff who aren’t from the diabetes field read this as part of their orientation to diabetes and athletics!

Read it!

Mari Ruddy
Founder Team WILD: Women Inspiring Life with Diabetes

Hello Jerry:

Now 2010, the book’s made it to my “short list”, hopefully the local library can get the modified latest 2nd edition. I wish she had been able to gather a larger martial arts group(ing). I would love to be in contact with more of us. And I have no doubt she did her best. Hopefully her next update will be a paid website rather than an inprint version.

Specific to the details of your follow-up martial arts question, each art or practice is extremely unique in most ways. Heck get five teachers of any art/practice and guaranteed similarities will exist but the “radical differences” will be all over the map determined by instructors specific emphasis, temperment… even within the same art form!

There are hundreds of different martial arts, or more but depending on the emphasis of the specific instructor how we climb the particular mountain(s) will be different in approach, intensity and presentation

Consider, all martial arts have varying degrees of physical contact, physicality at some point in the training process. For some its from the very first day, for others its not until intermediate stages. If my particular art or practice contains grappling, or throws for example, that is a very different physical and technical process than for example punching or high airborne kicking…

Each one has different physical activities, carb requirements and though many certainly are common. You’ve got important problems to consider if the issue of pumping exists.

Bluntly, where do you put a pump that its not a viable target for a striking art? How can you attach a pump if your fundamental techniques involve ground-grappling, pins, throws and so forth?.It becomes an “unending chapter” when respective arts have very different quasi traditional clothing as part of their practices; Heavy weight duct cloth (sic pocketless) uniforms, defacto pleated skirts (aka hakama), running shorts and tee shirts… all kinds of possibilites requiring consideration.

If/when you add arts or practices which are interested in what are characterized as being “internal” or arts who study what their culture describes as internal energies (chi, ki, prana, etc.) as fundamental aspects to their practices. The author will require some horribly experienced practitioners to help her there… if they exist and can be found?.

It is complex stuff… these martial arts. Good diabetes parallels but obscenely varied. Having the current edition did the author explore any of these different factors/aspects of many different arts?


Yes, that is of course true. I’ve made the same comment directly to her and she has actually done some work recently to address the issues with type 2. You can visit her site at and read some of her more recent writings. The same comments can also be made about the Diabetes Sports and Exercise Association, and they also claim to be working at change.

The real disconnect is that most exercise work for type 2s assume that you are unfit and overweight, not particularly relevant if you are a type 2 that runs marathons or squats 405.