And recently, the pros seem increasingly interested in naturopathic medicine for safer options to fine-tune their performance.
Dr. Mark Strom, NMD (SCNM 2008), has been playing an integral part in the changing scene surrounding sports medicine. Last year, the National Football League (NFL)’s Arizona Cardinals invited Dr. Strom to join its medical staff during the team’s most successful season to date. Through this experience, he found many of the players and medical staff members expressed interest in naturopathic treatment options.
“The [Cardinals’] management and medical staff saw that many of their top players were seeking treatment from different naturopathic physicians in the Valley, so they wanted to see what it was like to have a naturopathic doctor on staff and offer uniformity for the team,” Dr. Strom explained. “I predominately offered sports-specific nutritional IVs, which were very well received by the players.”
In fact, about 35 to 40 percent of the players were administered IV treatments regularly for energy and recuperation. Dr. Strom described the experience as “a thrill to treat some of the most recognized athletes in the world with naturopathic medicine.” Speaking with the Cardinals players on a regular basis gave Dr. Strom a contemporary understanding of what the pros are looking for in sports medicine.
This year, with an endorsement from a previous naturopathic physician, Dr. Strom is working with the Arizona Diamondbacks Major League Baseball (MLB) team; the players visit his private practice to receive nutrient IV therapy.
“Professional athletes are drug tested so often that they are now seeking out naturopathic doctors for nutritional IVs, regenerative medicine and other non-toxic alternatives that MDs and DOs are not trained in,” Dr. Strom said. “Naturopathic medicine offers [athletes] safer and more effective options.”
As a member of the Arizona Interscholastic Association (AIA) Sports Medicine Advisory Committee, Dr. Strom also played an active role in getting naturopathic physicians recognition as certified medical providers, allowing NDs to perform pre-participation physical examinations for high school athletes.
Patients often view naturopathic doctors as “complete physicians” because they offer fully integrative care. In states with a full scope of practice, such as Arizona, NDs can use all of their clinical training, which includes acupuncture, botanical medicine, clinical nutrition, homeopathic remedies, IV therapy, lifestyle modification, minor surgery, physical medicine and prescription medication.
Want to learn how you can get involved in the sports medicine field? Email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 480-858-9100 to find out ways you can help athletes achieve their goals through naturopathic medicine.
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