Cincinnati Sports Medicine

Sports Medicine Wheel: Synergy In Motion 

Enhancing the Sports Medicine Model:

Four Advanced Therapies to Optimize Athletes’ Health and Performance

Sports Medicine Wheel: Synergy In Motion 
Sports Medicine Wheel: Synergy In Motion

In recent years, the field of sports medicine has witnessed remarkable advancements in the form of cutting-edge treatments and therapies. These innovations empower athletes to proactively prevent injuries and expedite their recovery in case of any unfortunate occurrences. Ultimately, these advancements enable athletes to achieve peak performance levels. 

Remember, as Nike states, “If you have a body, you are an athlete,” so this article also applies to everyone, regardless of athletic level or ability.   

Four well-established pillars support the current Sports Medicine Wheel, each strengthening and adding to a solid foundation: Sports Medicine Physicians and Orthopedic Surgeons, Physical Therapy, Athletic Training and Sports Performance, and Chiropractic Care.

Sports Medicine and Regenerative Healing Medical Devices

Four additional advanced therapies and treatments exist, including shockwave therapy (ESWT), electromagnetic transduction therapy (EMTT), MLS Laser Therapy, and Orthobiologics. When fully integrated into the Sports Medicine Wheel, the tensegrity between all spokes will be exceedingly strong. Except for sports-related traumatic injuries, such as bone fractures or severe ligament and tendon tears, most injuries can be prevented well before they escalate into more severe conditions. Such proactive measures optimize athletes’ performance at the highest levels and result in significant cost savings for professional sports teams. By embracing the enhanced Sports Medicine Wheel, individual athletes and sports teams gain a tremendous advantage, ensuring their players stay on the field, leading to immense success in winning games and potentially adding longevity to their careers. 

Professional Sports Teams / Athletes approach to Sports Medicine

According to a 2021 article by, during 2019, 2020, and most of the 2021 season, NFL teams had a combined loss of over 1.2 billion in pay due to players being unable to compete on game day due to injury. It could be a strained hamstring, sprained ankle, or an athlete who has suffered an ACL requiring surgery,  that NFL team is ultimately responsible for paying not only the injured player’s salary but also have to pay the additional salary of another free agent or someone elevated off the practice squad. 

For those three years, NFL teams faced an average cost of around 37 million dollars per team, leading to a staggering wage loss amounting to an average of 12 million dollars per team per year. Consider the invaluable advantages that athletes and their affiliated organizations could enjoy if every team reinvested a portion of the substantial savings obtained from player preservation into advanced therapy. This visionary approach would yield immeasurable benefits for all parties involved. 

A proactive and forward-thinking sports medicine department is crucial in preventing minor injuries from escalating into severe ones. By reducing the necessity for medical intervention and minimizing downtime, athletes can better focus on their athletic pursuits. Integrating these four state-of-the-art therapies into the Sports Medicine Wheel expedites healing, ensuring a quicker return to peak performance.

Minor discomforts and compensation patterns can escalate into severe muscle strains or ligament tears if left untreated. Treating mild to moderate injuries with the enhanced Sports Medicine Wheel is crucial. Neglecting or inadequately addressing injuries can lead to longer breaks from sports and may require more extensive medical interventions, including surgery. One example of a Repetitive Stress Injury (RSI), which could likely be prevented, is the UCL tear that requires Tommy John surgery to repair. 

treatment approaches for sports medicine departments

What is the prevailing treatment approach sports medicine departments use to address elbow pain in athletes? Typically, a combination of rest, stretching, strengthening exercises, and, in some cases, cortisone injections are employed to alleviate inflammation, providing temporary relief. However, this general elbow discomfort can gradually progress to a stage where Tommy John surgery becomes necessary—an outcome that could have been prevented if the proposed Sports Medicine Wheel had been integrated into the athlete’s treatment plan. By incorporating the innovative Wheel, MLB has the potential to save millions of dollars annually through injury prevention while also ensuring that the majority of baseball players are spared from escalating elbow pain or the need for Tommy John Surgery.

Even though surgeons specializing in Tommy John Surgery possess exceptional skills, the success rate only reaches a maximum of 85%. Many surgeons’ success falls significantly below this percentage, which raises concerns about the future of promising high school athletes, newly drafted Minor League players, and even established MLB players who require Tommy John Surgery to repair the UCL. 

Why not take a proactive and comprehensive approach to address many injuries using the best available treatments? The current approach often leaves athletes, regardless of their level, susceptible to injuries that can profoundly impact their lives. Let’s prioritize their well-being and ensure they receive the care they deserve.

We can significantly reduce the risk of UCL tears or many other RSI or overuse injuries by combining expert manual therapy, shockwave therapy, EMTT, laser, and orthobiologics. This approach minimizes the time spent on the disabled list, allowing athletes to recover and get back into the game swiftly.

If just one Tommy John surgery could be prevented for an MLB top-tier pitcher making 20 million per year, attributed directly to integrating these synergistic sports medicine modalities, the cost savings to that organization would be enormous. By reinvesting just a fraction of those savings by hiring highly skilled manual therapists, and acquiring cutting-edge medical devices like Radial and Focused shockwave, EMTT, and the MLS Laser, along with integrating orthobiologics as a vital treatment option, the cost-benefit to an organization would be covered for years to come.  

The injury prevention and recovery principles previously discussed for MLB players apply universally to sports-related injuries. Effective treatment protocols remain consistent whether it’s football, basketball, running, swimming, rugby, soccer, tennis, gymnastics, pickleball, or any other sport. While athletes may differ, these protocols are vital in ensuring optimal care and performance.

Breakdown of The Four (5) synergistic and innovative therapies: 

  1. Advanced Manual Therapy Modalities

    While not explicitly mentioned among the four innovative therapies, expert manual therapy serves as the vital connective tissue, no pun intended, to safeguard athletes from an array of injuries and expedite their return to peak performance. This foundational work, if integrated into your sports medicine team or department, has the potential to prevent or remedy many injuries that could otherwise occur. Embrace the remarkable expertise of manual therapists and witness the transformative impact it can have on athletes’ well-being.

  2. Recommended Manual Therapy Techniques:

    A few highly recommended manual therapy techniques to assist your athletes include Active Release Techniques (ART), which help reduce scar tissue and adhesions and decrease restricted range of motion (ROM). Neuromuscular Therapy (NMT) is based on the research of Janet Travell, MD, President Kennedy’s physician, who mapped out many pain referral patterns that Trigger Points elicit. A large amount of pain can be reduced or eliminated if trigger points are effectively treated. Muscle Activation Techniques (MAT)®Muscle Activation Techniques (MAT) is a potent tool for reactivating muscles and addressing and rectifying imbalances. MAT restores optimal contractile capabilities by repairing communication pathways between the nervous and muscular systems. Additionally, there is a myriad of manual therapy techniques available to assist athletes in preventing injuries and identifying personal preferences for treatment and just need to discover what works best for you and your athletes.

  3. ESWT, Radial, and Focused Shockwave Therapy:

    There are very few medical devices as effective as combining Radial and Focused Shockwave therapy to assist athletes in recovering from a range of sports-related injuries, such as ligamental sprains, muscle strains, and tendon strains. Whether it’s a muscular skeletal injury or an MSK issue, this approach is crucial to achieving optimal outcomes. If an athlete’s recovery isn’t progressing as desired, incorporating ESWT can be a transformative game-changer, helping alleviate pain and getting them ready for action.
  1. Extracorporeal Magnetotrasduction Therapy (EMTT):

    EMTT is an innovative magnetic therapy technique that effectively reduces inflammation in a wide range of conditions, from acute injuries like ankle sprains to chronic musculoskeletal discomfort such as lower back pain, herniated discs, tendinopathies, rotator cuff issues, Achilles tendonitis, and osteoarthritis (OA). This cutting-edge therapy offers relief for various conditions and is backed by clinical evidence.
  1. MLS Laser Therapy:

    The MLS M6 uses a patented multiwave, fully robotic laser to reduce pain and inflammation while promoting soft tissue repair at the cellular level. Two wavelengths are used in unison, penetrating the affected body area for optimal results. When these wavelengths are delivered together, they create an energetic synergy that enhances anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving effects, surpassing what each wavelength can achieve individually without the risk of thermal damage. Each wavelength delivers different results:
    • Wavelength 1: continuous laser at 808 nanometers; reduces inflammation and swelling
    • Wavelength 2: pulsed laser at 905 nanometers; reaches deeper into tissue and nerves, creating an analgesic effect.
  1. Orthobiologics:

    The advent of Regenerative Medicine therapies, including Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) Injections, Stem Cell Therapy, and other orthobiologic treatments, has revolutionized the rehabilitation processes for athletes. These advanced treatments have brought about a paradigm shift, offering new possibilities for recovery and rejuvenation.

Although currently limited, more universities and professional sports teams are starting to adopt innovative healing solutions in their sports medicine and athletic training departments. These therapies will soon be universally accepted and considered vital to their programs. 

Universities and professional sports teams can unlock immense benefits when they acknowledge the relatively small investment needed for their medical and athletic training departments. Undeniably, this realization will propel the growth of sports medicine and its impact.

professional athletes Can maintain performance & enjoy a pain-free Retirement

A comprehensive approach is vital for professional athletes aiming to maintain peak performance and enjoy a pain-free retirement. Incorporating a combination of advanced manual therapy sessions, shockwave therapy, EMTT, and MLS M6 Laser, along with orthobiologics such as PRP and stem cell treatments, can effectively address any significant injuries. It is crucial to prioritize timely treatment, both during the season and immediately after the off-season begins, allowing the body ample time to regenerate and heal. By following this ideal protocol, athletes can minimize aches, pains, and the need for future surgeries or joint replacements while ensuring long-term success in their careers.

You don’t have to be an elite or professional athlete to experience the advantages of these state-of-the-art therapies, ensuring both your present and future well-being. The future’s ultimate sporting event won’t be marred by preventable injuries that sideline or limit an athlete’s ability to reach their highest level of performance. 

Once all aspects of the Sports Medicine Wheel are fully integrated into organized sports medicine departments, universities, and professional organizations, major injuries will significantly decrease. Additionally, expected recovery times for many injuries will also be reduced.

Discover the boundless possibilities of Sports Medicine by spinning the Sports Medicine Wheel. This is merely the beginning, as beneath the surface lies an undeniable energy and synergy waiting to be harnessed.