National University faculty member Carlo Guadagno, DC, CCSP®, ICCSP, FICC, was recently named the American Chiropractic Association Sports Council’s (ACASC) 2016 Sports Chiropractor of the Year. He received the recognition in October at the council’s Symposium in New Orleans.
“The award came as a surprise,” Dr. Guadagno said. “It was quite an honor to be selected from among many of my distinguished peers.”
About a month prior, Dr. Guadagno fulfilled his career-long dream of treating Olympic athletes at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janiero. Chosen from hundreds of applicants, Dr. Guadagno was part of an international team of just 16 DCs who were placed in the Olympic Village Polyclinic.
“This honor shows just how dedicated Dr. Guadagno is to the growing field of sports chiropractic,” said NUHS President Joseph Stiefel, MS, EdD, DC. “Through his equally dedicated instruction, our students can learn how to achieve the same level of success.”
When presenting the award, the selection committee, which is made up of previous winners, cited Dr. Guadagno’s international work treating various types of athletes including U.S.A. track and field, Pro Beach volleyball and D1 College Football. In 2011, Dr. Guadagno was also named Sports Chiropractor of the Year by the FCA Sports Injuries Council. The award he received this year is the council’s highest honor nationwide which is given on an annual basis.
“Dr. Guadagno has represented sports chiropractic for years. His dedication to the teaching of students, attendance at sporting events worldwide and his never ending devotion to the growth of this field of chiropractic has never wavered,” said Shane Espinoza, D.C., C.C.S.P.®, ACA Sports Council president. “He continues to represent that which is best in this world we call Sports Chiropractic. We were honored to present this distinguished award to a very deserving individual.”
Dr. Guadagno currently serves as an ACA delegate for Florida. He previously served as a past president of the Council on Sports Injuries, Rehabilitation and Physical Fitness of the FCA and on the board of directors of the ACA Sports Injury Council.
“NUHS is proud to have a top practitioner like Dr. Guadagno be part of our university,” said Daniel Strauss, DC, dean of the College of Professional Studies in Florida, where Guadagno is faculty. “One of the reasons NUHS can offer such a high standard of learning to its students is because of great instructors like Dr. Guadagno.”
To Dr. Guadagno, athletes are perfect patients because they take to heart everything he recommends and will do anything and everything to improve their health.
“My work is not so much about trauma but helping athletes increase their strength, flexibility and range of motion,” he said, adding that the slightest adjustment can shave off crucial seconds in performance time.
At the various international events he travels to, Dr. Guadagno said he enjoys serving as an ambassador to chiropractic care all over the world and showcasing the benefits of chiropractic treatment. He is already preparing applications for more international sports games, including the World Games in Poland next year and the next Summer Olympics in Japan in 2020.
In the following, Dr. Guadagno discusses firsthand his experiences in the sports chiropractic field:
Why did you decide to pursue chiropractic as a career?
While studying at the University of Miami as an undergraduate student, I had a local chiropractor who made a profound impression on me. I saw the results firsthand when one of my Father’s employee’s was helped by him following a traumatic injury. He explained the nature of Chiropractic and how we can positively affect our patients safely and conservatively.
What sparked your interest in sports chiropractic?
As an athlete myself, I was naturally inclined to be attracted to sports chiropractic. I joined the ACA Sports Council and networked with amazing colleagues. Also, I had seen what a great experience Dr. Jeff Solomon (the doctor responsible for my preceptorship) had when selected to the Winter Olympics in Torino, Italy. While practicing in Miami, I was fortunate to know ACA Sports Council Hall of Fame inductee Dr. Tom Hyde who was the original Miami Dolphins chiropractor and one of our early leaders in this field.
How did you get started working with professional sports teams/athletes?
As a member of the ACA Sports Council you will be offered many chances to network with individuals who are influential in the sports chiropractic world, nationally as well as internationally. You must be circulating at seminars and events to be noticed. Rarely will a DC who spends all his time in his office be asked to manage a team.
Any advice for new and current doctors of chiropractic?
Never stop learning and expanding your toolbox even after you graduate. Get some post-graduate training in your area of interest. For example, if you’re interested in sports medicine, National University’s Post-Graduate Department offers a Chiropractic Sports Physician certification program. When choosing the right chiropractic school, choose one that’s going to prepare you well for the future in our profession and not just look at the history of the profession.