Kent chiropractor chosen to help Olympic athletes

Chiropractor Gary Blackburn is taking his first vacation in almost 19 years.

Gary Blackburn

Gary Blackburn

Chiropractor Gary Blackburn is taking his first vacation in almost 19 years.

Blackburn was selected by the U.S. Olympic Committee Sports Medicine Team to come to the Olympic training center in Chula Vista, Calif., to help get Olympic athletes ready to compete in the Olympics. The prestigious opportunity only comes to those who possess certification and medicinal credentials, such as a post-doctoral certificate and a certification by the Council of Extremity Adjusting.

“I was so excited when I heard I was selected, but I was torn because I wasn’t sure I could leave my patients and my life here in Kent,” Blackburn said. “But I know that I will come back from California with new information to help my patients here.”

Blackburn is a Certified Chiropractic Sports Physician, which indicates proficiency in the assessment and treatment of the root causing of recurring pain in the spine and extremities. His practice, Rebound, is located at 11107 SE Kent-Kangley Road.

“I love what I do because I think it is such a blessing to be able to help people,” Blackburn said.

This opportunity won’t be Blackburn’s first time working with professional athletes. He has worked with professional athletes such as the Detroit Lions and the Detroit Tigers.

“I get such an adrenaline rush when working with athletes,” he said. “These people are great at what they do and I admire it.”

The USOC also supports U.S. Olympic and Paralympic athletes on and off the field of play through programming such as direct athlete funding, health insurance, tuition grants, media and marketing opportunities, career services and performance-based monetary rewards. In addition, the Olympic Training Center facilities provide athletes with performance services, including sports medicine, strength and conditioning, psychology, physiology, nutrition assistance and performance technology.

“I am going to be a sponge when I get there,” Blackburn said. “There are some of the best doctors in the United States there and I just want to crawl into their brain and get whatever I can get and bring that home to Kent.”

Blackburn will adjust athletes participating in track and field, volleyball, archery, canoeing and motocross. In order to fully understand what muscle groups each athlete will use, Blackburn gets to try out each sport while at USOC.

“I basically get to participate in every sport that I cover over there and that’s going to be so much fun,” he said. “I am mostly very interested to get to see the mechanics that are involved in each sport.”

Blackburn will be in California from July 23 to August 5.

“Team USA is what made me decide to take this chance,” Blackburn said. “I’m proud of our country and people like these athletes in it and can’t wait to lend a hand.”

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