I had the exciting opportunity to work at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, CO from September 1st through the 16th. I was one of four chiropractors selected from the United States to participate in this internship rotation. Upon arrival I was taken back by the beauty of the training complex. It is comparable to a small university with a resident hall, dormitories, athlete center and various buildings throughout the campus where the athletes will train depending on their sport. I would leave my dorm room (no I didn’t bring a fan and microwave) at 7:00am and head off to the cafeteria. The food was excellent, and there was a display that broke down the total calories, protein, fat, and carbohydrate content per serving. Very useful for the athletes, but of no use to me. Then it was off to the sports medicine clinic to treat the athletes.
The clinic itself was very impressive and had every amenity that an injured athlete could need. The full-time staff at the clinic included several athletic trainers, a physical therapist, medical physician and a chiropractor. The chiropractor, Dr. Michael Reed, is the medical director for the clinic and was one of the US chiropractors in Beijing. An orthopedist and optometrist came into the clinic once a week to see the athletes and there were several other medical specialists outside of the OTC that the athletes could be referred to if needed.
The athletes would typically come in to the clinic throughout the day when they didn’t have practice or training. Most of the athletes had two scheduled training sessions with their coaches everyday. The athletes would present to the clinic with an injury and then I would provide an initial work-up and treatment if a referral was not indicated. In addition to providing care in the clinic, I would provide medical coverage for an event or practice during the day. This was a great opportunity to work directly with the teams and coaches themselves.
During my time at the clinic, I worked closely with many of the full time staff to best serve the needs of the athlete. These practitioners were very highly skilled and knowledgeable. It was a great opportunity to discuss case studies and offer oneanother our rationale for certain treatment procedures. We did meet as a clinic a couple of times during the week to discuss diagnosis, treatment and prognosis for certain athletes that were being seen who presented with a more difficult condition(s).
Overall, this was a fantastic experience. An opportunity to treat some of america’s best athletes and work alongside top practitioners. I continue to maintain contact with many of the athletes and the training staff and look working with them again sometime in the near future.