Nice work, if you’re qualified.
For several years, Mike Bohrnsen has been rubbing shoulders with professional athletes on scenic beaches all over the world.
More accurately, the Spokane Valley chiropractor has been rubbing their shoulders and all the other body parts that get used and abused in beach sports, especially beach volleyball.
“I’m the team behind the team,” said Bohrnsen, one of a handful of beach doctors who see the best and worst consequences of playing beach sports. On a given day, Bohrnsen will massage tight muscles, tape ankles and knees or monitor sickness caused by travel.
Now he’s a regular on the world tour, contracting with the Team USA Beach Volleyball National program and last year was honored as the group’s “Medical Provider of the Year.”
The 33-year-old Bohrnsen has worked 16 international tournaments, from Norway to China to Maceio, Brazil, where Americans Nick Lucena and Phil Dalhausser brought home gold medals.
The next stop could be an August return to Brazil, where Rio de Janeiro’s famed Copacabana beach will host the sport in the Olympic Games. Along with other medical personnel, Bohrnsen is on the short list to make the trip to Rio; he expects to be notified soon.
Top-flight competition demands the same level of medical expertise. “Having sports med is huge for us because we are constantly putting our bodies through constant wear and tear,” Lucena said. “So maintaining your health and preventing injuries is one of the most important parts of the job; so it’s necessary to have sports med with us.”
The former Gonzaga Prep wrestler and football player has come full circle. After working in Southern California, he’s now building a practice at Xcelerate Sports Therapy & Chiropractic in Spokane Valley.
That’s where he deals with the everyday injuries of the casual and weekend athlete.
“In my eyes, everyone is an athlete, whether they’re running a 5K or a marathon,” said Bohrnsen, who also is finding time to train for the Coeur d’Alene Half Ironman.
Preparation is the key, Bohrnsen said, citing the importance of pre-event hydration, nutrition and stretching.
“Some high school and college kids can get away without stretching much. But after those ages, you run the risk of experiencing injury problems from improper or insufficient stretching,” said Bohrnsen, who also works with the Evergreen Region Volleyball Association and Team Blaze, a local triathlon club.
“The most important advice we give to the pros and the weekend warriors in avoiding injuries is to properly warm up and cool down,” Bohrnsen said. “Proper warm-up means your body has to at least break a sweat. If you take a cold plastic and bend it a lot, it’ll break. But if you dip it in hot water and then do the same, it becomes more pliable.
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