SLU PT Faculty Member Assists at U.S. Olympic Training Center
Assistant physical therapy professor Jason Bennett, Ph.D., SCS, ATC, was invited by the United States Olympic
Committee to provide medical care to athletes competing in the Dave Schultz Memorial
International Wrestling Tournament in Colorado Springs, CO.
The annual wrestling tournament is a U.S. Olympic qualifying event. The top American
wrestlers at each weight class automatically qualify for the U.S Olympic Trials, where
they will compete to make the U.S. Olympic Greco Roman or Freestyle wrestling team
this summer in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
It was an opportunity to work with some of the top medical professionals across multiple
disciplines from all over the United States at an elite sports medicine."
Jason Bennett, Ph.D.,
As a member of the sports medicine staff for the tournament, Bennett provided acute
medical care to wrestlers who were injured during the competition, performed pre-participation
skin checks, and provided post-competition injury evaluations and treatment. Bennett
also provided medical care to athletes from other sports, including gymnastics, weightlifting
and modern pentathlon, who were training at the Olympic Training Center.
Bennett said he was thrilled to have a role in the wrestling tournament.
"It was an opportunity to work with some of the top medical professionals across multiple
disciplines from all over the United States at an elite sports medicine facility,"
Bennett said. "It was also an opportunity to see some of the best athletes in the
world train and compete."
This was not Bennett's first experience as a sports medicine volunteer with the U.S.O.C.
He has previously worked events at its facility in Chula Vista, CA and an earlier
event at the same Colorado Springs, CO location. Despite his preparedness, there was
a new wrinkle for Bennett at this year's event: a language barrier.
"This was my first international event, which created challenges with communication,"
Bennett said. "You learn pretty quickly how valuable Google Translate can be when
faced with an injured, non-English speaking athlete."
The Dave Schultz Memorial International Wrestling Tournament is named after American
wrestler and Olympic gold medalist Dave Schultz who was tragically killed in 1996
at the age of 36. In 1997, Schultz was posthumously inducted into the National Wrestling
Hall of Fame.