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Meet the Expert

Dr. Timothy Miller


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Doctors Going The Extra Mile For Runners, Cyclists

Boom in ‘endurance sports’ leads to new medical specialties, high-tech treatments

(COLUMBUS, Ohio) April 2014 – You may never have heard them referred to as “endurance athletes”, but chances are you know one.  They are cyclists, swimmers and runners who participate in sports that require almost constant training; and from bicycle races to 5k runs to marathons, their numbers are booming.

“There are now more runners and endurance athletes out there than any other recreational sport,” said Dr. Timothy Miller of Ohio State’s Wexner Medical Center.  “Because of that we see very specific kinds of injuries that are, for the most part, just related to them,” he said.

To meet the medical needs of this rapidly growing group, Ohio State’s Sports Medicine has created one of the first programs in the country dedicated solely to endurance sports.  “They aren’t like other athletes.  Because of the nature of their sports they have to train constantly, and even a minor injury can take a heavy toll, especially if it’s not treated properly from the outset,” said Dr. Miller.

To see how Dr. Miller is utilizing things like cross training, high-tech movement analysis and underwater treadmills to treat these athletes, click on the video box to the left.  To read the full press release on the Endurance Sport Program at Ohio State, “click to read more” below.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Boom in ‘endurance sports’ leads to new medical specialties, high-tech treatments

COLUMBUS, Ohio – You may never have heard them referred to as “endurance athletes,” but chances are you know one. They’re cyclists, swimmers and runners who participate in sports that require almost constant training; and from bicycle races to 5k runs to marathons, their numbers are booming.

“There are now more runners and endurance athletes out there than any other recreational sport,” said Dr. Timothy Miller of The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center.   “Because of that, we see very specific kinds of injuries that are just related to them.”

To meet the medical needs of this rapidly growing group, Ohio State’s Sports Medicine has created one of the first programs in the country dedicated solely to endurance sports.

“They aren’t like other athletes. Because of the nature of their sports, they have to train year-round and even a minor injury can take a heavy toll, especially if not treated properly from the outset,” Miller said.

When dealing with injuries to endurance athletes, Miller uses everything from cross training to high-tech movement analysis to underwater treadmills. Overuse accounts for most of the injuries Miller sees in endurance athletes, commonly ankle sprains and stress fractures in runners, knee pain in bikers and shoulder pain in swimmers.

A serious stress fracture in a foot was the injury that had the potential to derail the training regimen of Olympic track and field hopeful Korbin Smith. A surgical repair might have sidelined him for months and put his Olympic dreams in serious jeopardy.

“You can go about it aggressively off the get-go. You can have surgery immediately, but not everyone wants to have a permanent pin or plate in their foot,” Smith said.

In order to heal his injured foot while inhibiting his training as little as possible, Smith turned to Dr. Miller and his endurance medicine team. They allowed Smith to continue running – under water, using a special treadmill and pool.

“I did a lot of aqua-jogging, which is a lot harder than I thought it was going to be,” Smith said. He said it was important for him to work with a medical team that specializes both in sports medicine and endurance sports, because they understand his situation and can relate.

In addition to their physical injuries, Miller said endurance athletes can also experience anxiety or depressive symptoms when their training is disrupted, so counseling is an important part of the healing process.

“It can be very difficult, not only physically, but also mentally,” he said. “We have services that we provide here at Ohio State that are also for mental conditioning prior to endurance events.”

Another key focus of endurance medicine is using high-tech computer analysis to pinpoint biomechanical concerns and help the athlete correct these issues to prevent further injuries. (Learn how you can take advantage of this expert analysis at http://medicalcenter.osu.edu/mediaroom/features/Pages/Endurance-Sports-Medicine.aspx)

“I think what makes us special is that we focus not only on the treatment of the actual injury but also on education of the athlete and helping them prevent lost training time from injuries down the road,” Miller said.

 

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More doctors now specializing in treating `endurance athletes`
Dr. Timothy Miller of Ohio State`s Wexner Medical Center coaches Korbin Smith as he runs on an underwater treadmill. After suffering a stress fracture in his foot, Smith underwent treatment from a program specifically designed to treat endurance athletes, like runners and cyclists. The sports endurance program allows athletes to continue to train in different ways while doctors work to help their injuries heal.
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Korbin Smith is treated by one of the first `Endurance Medicine` programs in the U.S.
Olympic track and field hopeful Korbin Smith uses an underwater treadmill under the supervision of Dr. Timothy Miller of Ohio State`s Wexner Medical Center. Dr. Miller is one of the first doctors in the country to develop medical programs specifically designed to treat endurance athletes, like runners and cyclists.
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Using an underwater treadmill helps athletes continue to train while healing injuries
Korbin Smith runs on an underwater treadmill while nursing a stress fracture in his foot. Smith, an Olympic track and field hopeful, was treated by the `Endurance Medicine` specialists at Ohio State`s Wexner Medical Center. Ohio State was one of the first in the U.S. to develop therapies that allow endurance athletes, like runners and cyclists, to continue to train while healing injuries.
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Dr. Timothy Smith examines the leg of an endurance athlete
More Americans participate in endurance sports, like running and cycling, than any other recreational sport. In an effort to treat them more effectively, Dr. Timothy Miller of Ohio State`s Wexner Medical Center helped to develop one of the nation`s first `Endurance Medicine` specialties. Dr. Miller uses cross training and high tech devices to evaluate injuries and allow endurance athletes to continue to train while healing injuries.
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The boom in endurance sports has lead to new medical specialties
Dr. Timothy Miller of Ohio State`s Wexner Medical Center examines the leg of an endurance athlete. Endurance sports, like running and cycling, are booming in popularity in the U.S. In an effort to care for injuries associated with those sports, doctors at Ohio State were among the first in the nation to establish an `Endurance Medicine` clinic, which uses therapies designed to treat injuries while allowing athletes to continue their training.
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Even with a stress fracture, Korbin Smith never missed a step in his training
Korbin Smith, an Olympic track and field hopeful, trains in Columbus, Ohio shortly after healing a stress fracture in his foot. Smith went to the `Endurance Medicine` clinic at Ohio State`s Wexner Medical Center, one of the first in the nation that allows athletes like runners and cyclists to continue to train while doctors work to heal their injuries.
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Doctors go the extra mile to treat runners, cyclists and other endurance sport athletes
Even while healing from a stress fracture in his foot, Korbin Smith continued to train. As an Olympic track and field hopeful, Smith says he couldn`t afford to take weeks, let alone months, off from training to allow his foot to heal. Instead, he went to the `Endurance Medicine` clinic at Ohio State`s Wexner Medical Center. One of the first of its kind in the U.S., the clinic at Ohio State has doctors dedicated to treating endurance athletes like runners and cyclists.
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The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center
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The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center
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