This series of debates was initiated for the Journal of Applied Physiology because we believe an important means of searching for truth is through debate where contradictory viewpoints are put forward. This dialectic process whereby a thesis is advanced, then opposed by an antithesis, with a synthesis subsequently arrived at, is a powerful and often entertaining method for gaining knowledge and for understanding the source of a controversy. Before reading these Point:Counterpoint manuscripts or preparing a brief commentary on the content, the reader should understand that authors on each side of the debate are expected to advance a polarized viewpoint and to select the most convincing data to support their position. This approach differs markedly from the review article where the reader expects the author to present balanced coverage of the topic. Each of the authors has been strictly limited in the lengths of both the manuscript (1,200 words) and the rebuttal (400). The number of references to publications is also limited to 30, and citation of unpublished findings is prohibited.
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