Sports Medicine

At Heartland Orthopedic Specialists, our sports medicine doctors are the experts in the diagnosis and treatment of sports-related injuries and conditions. 

Sports medicine is a specialized branch of medicine focused on the diagnosis and treatment of sports-related injuries and conditions.

Regardless of age, sport, or ability level, athletes and active individuals alike depend on a healthy musculoskeletal system to perform at their highest aptitude. However, when a sports-related injury occurs, it can take you out of the game for days, weeks, or even months at a time, dependent upon its severity.

Injuries and musculoskeletal pain are common occurrences in the sports community because athletes redefine their limits by pushing their bodies to physical exhaustion during training, practice, and competition.

Some common sports-related injuries include:

  • Neck and shoulder injuries, such as rotator cuff injuries and SLAP tears
  • Arm and elbow injuries, such as tennis elbow and fractures
  • Hand and wrist injuries, such as sprains and jammed fingers
  • Hip and knee injuries, such as a pulled groin and ligament tears (meniscus, ACL, MCL, and PCL)
  • Upper leg injuries, such as a pulled quad or hamstring
  • Lower leg injuries, such as shin splints
  • Foot and ankle injuries, such as ankle sprains

Our sports medicine experts at Heartland Orthopedic Specialists have dedicated their practices to the treatment of sports-related injuries, as well as to educating athletes on injury prevention, improving performance, and enhancing overall physical health. They thoroughly understand that injuries sustained during activity are painful, unexpected, and often devastating, as they can postpone or derail your fitness goals as well as your daily routine.

Fortunately, many sports-related injuries can be treated through nonsurgical techniques, such as rehabilitative modalities, casting, bracing, medication, and injections. Our sports medicine specialists know that a “return to play” is most often the goal of the patient, so they will turn to surgical intervention only after nonsurgical treatments have proven ineffective.

When you are seen by a Heartland Orthopedic Specialists sports medicine provider, he or she will evaluate and diagnose your symptoms and work with you, as a team, to develop a personalized treatment plan to best accommodate your individual needs.

Please note: Though our sports medicine specialists understand how difficult and discouraging it can be to watch from the sidelines, it is critical that patients follow their doctors’ orders exactly, as well as their strengthening and rehabilitation programs. Returning to play too quickly or without proper rehabilitation can cause further injury.

Whether you have sustained an acute injury, such as an ACL tear or ankle sprain, or an overuse injury, such as shin splints or patellofemoral syndrome, it is imperative that you see a specialist with the highest level of training in sports medicine so that you can get on the road to recovery and get back in the game quickly and safely.

To consult with a sports medicine specialist at Heartland Orthopedic Specialists, please schedule an appointment online or call (800) 762-1177.

Athletic Training

Athletic trainers are specially trained in musculoskeletal treatment for athletes and active individuals. At Heartland Orthopedic Specialists, our athletic trainers work in the clinical setting and on the field as sports medicine providers for 12 high schools, numerous area associations, and a Division III college. Our athletic trainers also staff our PEAK Performance sports training programs.

ImPACT Assessment and Concussion Management

Heartland Orthopedic Specialists Sports Medicine is proud to offer ImPACT concussion testing to keep area athletes safe. Using computerized neurocognitive assessment tools, the program helps assess an athlete’s injury and better determines their ability to return to play following a concussion.

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Online Guide to Sports Medicine

With our Athlete and Parent’s Guide to Sports Medicine, you’ll learn about sports injury treatment, prevention tips, recommendations for improving athletic performance, and new procedures and programs offered at Heartland Orthopedic Specialists.

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PEAK Performance

All our PEAK Performance programs are designed to provide student-athletes of all ages and levels with enhanced movement skills, increased speed, functional strength, balance, rotary core power, and an anaerobic energy system, which directly transfer to individual skills and game tactics.

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Physical Therapy

Our specialty-trained physical therapists offer a wide range of services to treat orthopedic dysfunctions, enhance function, and speed recovery. Our experienced and caring staff provides the latest in rehabilitation techniques to help athletes of all levels.

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Sports Medicine Staff

Working with athletes and their sports-related injuries and conditions, our sports medicine staff integrate all aspects of specialized care by collectively combining their training and expertise to help keep area athletes in the game.

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Proud Orthopedic Providers

Dedicated to serving our local athletic community, we are the proud official team doctors for:

Photo: Team Affiliations

Why choose Heartland Orthopedic Specialists?

With years of experience and advanced training devoted to the orthopedic care of the athlete, our esteemed sports medicine specialists at Heartland Orthopedic Specialists are unparalleled experts in accurately diagnosing and effectively treating athletic injuries and conditions.

Our sports medicine doctors, Dr. Eric NelsonDr. Emily Monroe, Dr. Aaron Balgaard, Dr. James NelsonDr. Russell Sticha, and Dr. Jonathan Harvey, have the knowledge, proficiency, and skill to accurately diagnose and effectively treat your sports-related injury or condition so you can get back in the game quickly and safely.

To consult with a Heartland Orthopedic Specialists sports medicine doctor, please schedule an appointment online or call (800) 762-1177.