In this episode, Co-Owner of Champion Physical Therapy and Performance, Mike Reinold, talks about his platform in the running for President-Elect of the AASPT.

Today, Mike talks about the ‘why’ behind his campaign, what he’s going to focus on as president, and how to make the academy more accessible and inclusive.

What is Mike’s vision for the academy? Hear his thoughts on adding value to the academy members, his plans to provide networking and mentorship opportunities, and his advice for his younger self, all on today’s episode of The Healthy, Wealthy & Smart Podcast.


Key Takeaways

  • “I’m going to judge my success of leading the academy, if in the end of my term, you clearly asked the members ‘why are you a member of the AASPT?’ And they have a very clear and distinct answer.“
  • “The most important thing we need to do right now is to re-brainstorm the mission and the vision of the academy to make sure that we’re doing one thing: we’re focused on the goals and objectives of the members.”
  • “I’m pretty certain at this point that everything I’ve accomplished in my career is because I specialised. You need to start general, but if there’s something you’re passionate about, every second of down time you have, learn how to be the best at that. Just be absolutely amazing at something.”


More about Mike Reinold

Mike ReinoldMike Reinold, PT, DPT, SCS, ATC, CSCS, C-PS is a world renowned and award-winning clinician, researcher, and educator. As a physical therapist, athletic training, and strength and conditioning coach, he specializes in all aspects of sports performance and rehabilitation. Mike is currently the Co-Founder of Champion PT and Performance, in Boston, MA, and Senior Medical Advisor for the Chicago White Sox after years of working at prestigious institutions like the American Sports Medicine Institute, Massachusetts General Hospital, and as Head Athletic Trainer and Physical Therapist for the Boston Red Sox. He has authored dozens of publications, lectured at national conferences, and has an educational website and podcast at


Suggested Keywords

AASPT, Physiotherapy, Research, PT, Health, Therapy, Healthcare, Education, Mentoring, Training, Networking, Sport, Athletics, Election,


To learn more, follow Mike at:


Facebook:       Mike Reinold

Instagram:       @mikereinold

Twitter:            @mikereinold

YouTube:        Mike Reinold

LinkedIn:         Mike Reinold


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Read the Full Transcript: 

Speaker 1 (00:01):

Hey, Mike, welcome to the podcast. Happy to have you on.

Speaker 2 (00:04):

Hey, Karen, how’s it going? Thanks again for for having me on your amazing podcast. I F I F I, I remember being on in the past

Speaker 1 (00:13):

So long ago. Yes. It has been a long time, but here we are. We’re back.

Speaker 2 (00:18):

That’s what happens when we, when we’re, we’re both veterans we’ll, we’ll call it. We’re both veterans. We, we, we did this in the past, but, but yeah, no, honestly, like big kudos to you for keeping this going and doing such an amazing job with it. Thanks for having

Speaker 1 (00:31):

Any time. And we’ll talk about your podcast a little later, but now, you know what it’s like to be cranking out episodes on a weekly basis, right.

Speaker 2 (00:39):

And staying up with it, right. It’s like, it’s a way of life now for us.

Speaker 1 (00:43):

It is, it is. That’s why there’s like a hashtag podcast life, I think on Instagram or something. It’s, it’s a thing. It’s a thing. So today you’re here because you are running for the president elect position for the American Academy of sports, physical therapy. So I wanted to have you on to talk about why you’re running and what your platform is and what you hope to do if elected. So let’s start with, what is the why behind your running.

Speaker 2 (01:13):

And I love that. That’s how you started this off, because that’s how I start everything off. Right. If we don’t establish our why, right. Like what’s the point of even coming out. But a lot of people, they, they, they don’t focus on the end. Right. They focus on just doing the day to day. So I love that you started off with a Y so I’ll, I’ll be honest with you. This is something I’ve been thinking about probably for the last, I don’t know, several years or so. I never felt that it was the right time for me. I’ve had a lot of my mentors pushing me to, to run in the past and the past elections. And yeah, I mean, trust me, it’s really humbling to know that the majority of past presidents of the Academy are all pushing me to run and, and kind of, you know, it’s really an honor to be nominated by them, right.

Speaker 2 (02:03):

Like, you know, Mike boy, Kevin Willett, George Davies, Tim Tyler. I mean, it’s Melissa gigantic of past presidents that were kind of nudging me to do it, but I was resistant for awhile. And I think that was a good thing because at that point in my career, I don’t think I was ready. And I don’t think I would’ve, I would’ve done the Academy justice for what it needed. Right. So I was kind of resistant for awhile. You know, I, I started a private practice. I have like four jobs, right? Like we all do, right. Like to an extent, you know, I’m flying, you know, to, to work with the white Sox. I, you know, private practice doing all these things with the educational stuff. So for me, it was always like, it wasn’t the right time, but things have changed a little bit.

Speaker 2 (02:44):

And I humbly say this now. And I, I really came to this conclusion the last couple of years of my career. I, I really believe I’m on the descent. Right. And don’t you think at some point in time, it’s, it’s all it’s about, okay. I am now on the decent portion of my career and I’ve completely changed my focus on trying to help others succeed. And I can’t wait to see the people that I work with surpassing me. Right. Leapfrog me just like we did, like when we were 20 years ago in our career. Right. And that, that kind of point. So I got, so my why right now is that I am completely shifted towards more of a leader right. In a leadership type position with my career. So both educational, both with my, my companies and with the organizations I worked for that, I thought it was a great time to do this so awesome that I’ve been getting nudged by, you know, such, such amazing people, but I didn’t feel it was right until, until now. And I think now I have the time I have the energy, I have a little bit of the head space to now be able to, to focus on this and it’s time to give back and it’s time to help the next generation. So that’s my why.

Speaker 1 (03:56):

Yeah. And that’s, I think it’s really important for anyone listening. If you are thinking about being of service, whether that be to something, to a section or whatever you want to call them Academy of the AP TA that, you know, you have the head space and the time. Right. Because you just don’t want to be saying, yeah, sure, sure. I’ll do this. I’ll do that. And then guess what, what happens if you get elected and you don’t have this space, you don’t have the time. Well, that’s just not the way to, to enter into, be of service to others. And like you said, you’re at that point in your career, at least it sounds like what I got from what you said, that you really want to be of service to others, that you’ve kind of, you’re, you’re content, you’re happy within your career and probably the time of your life and everything else that you can now do this for others.

Speaker 2 (04:48):

Right. And, and I’m, I’m very eager. Right. I had a lot of good mentors in my career that helped open doors for me, but don’t get me wrong. Like we need to be the one stepping through those doors. You have to have the energy and the effort to do that. Right. But for me, it’s about opening doors for others. Right. And I saw how much the Academy helped me early in my career, and I really kind of want to do that. Right. And you know, it’s funny, Mike Delaney and I were just talking about those. So Mike’s running for vice-president right now as well. So I’m myself for president him for vice-president. And we are so similar with our, our beliefs and everything that we have, that we were like, let’s team up to try to, to do this. So that way we can really give back and help.

Speaker 2 (05:29):

And we both said this. We said, if, if we don’t get elected at this point in time, we actually think that our time, our window will pass. Right. At that point in time, we’ll probably be in our fifties. Right. And I am not sure that we would be the right people to lead the Academy at that time, because we want to still be relevant. We still have students. We still work with like clinicians and educate all, all around the country, the world, right. Where we still are in touch with them. I’m not sure if I would be the right leader six years from now or seven years from now, it was probably one of the next election. We would be open if I would be the right leader for that. I, I, I’m not sure. Maybe I would be more out of touch. So Mike and I both said, I think this is our window. If we’re going to do it, it’s probably now or never.

Speaker 1 (06:14):

Okay. So let’s talk about your platform. What do you hope to accomplish as, as president, what are things that you really want to focus on?

Speaker 2 (06:24):

So I, again, I love, I love how you start with the why, and then, and then you talk about, you know, what you want to accomplish. I love that because to me, it’s not, it’s not about coming up with like a list of things I want to do. What I want to do is I want to flash forward six years or whatever it may be. Right. I hopefully would get reelected if I get elected the first time. Right? So we’ll say three years to be conservative maybe, but flash forward. And what I want, what I want to know is I’m going to judge my success of leading the Academy. If in the end of my term, you clearly asked the members, why are you a member of the American Academy of sports, physical therapy? And they have a very clear and distinct answer, right?

Speaker 2 (07:10):

That to me is going to define my success. Because right now, the number one thing I’m hearing from people, both veterans in this field, people in the middle of their career, early career professionals, students, they, they ask, why should I join the Academy? They don’t know what they get out of it. Right? And it’s, it’s one thing to just be a part of a group. But the question always is, what’s the value? What am I going to get out of that? So that’s how I’m going to judge our success as an executive committee at the end of this, is, is it very clear that we achieve the objective that you know, why? And I think the most important thing we need to do right now is I think we need to rebrand storm the mission and the vision of the Academy to make sure that we’re doing one thing we’re focused on the goals and objectives of the members.

Speaker 2 (08:00):

It’s not about me, right? It’s not about my ideas, my initiatives, what I want to get. It’s not about me or my legacy to me, it’s about what the members get out of it. And I think it’s actually pretty simple. I, I looked on the website, I’m just trying to like dig out like the mission statement. Right. And it’s very like corporate, right? Very like, like very about like, you know, advocacy and like, you know, making, you know, sports, physical therapy like prominent, right? I actually want to see the mission statement changed the simply the American Academy of sports, physical therapies here to help you specialize in sports, physical therapy, right? You are going to become a specialist now because we’re not learning stuff like this in school, we shouldn’t be learning stuff like this at school. It was very hard to be, to graduate as a new grad and be a very well-rounded proficient physical therapist.

Speaker 2 (08:44):

Right. But if you want to specialize, if you want the best education to learn everything you need about to become a sports physical therapist, if you want to stay cutting edge, right. If you want opportunities and networking, to be able to become part of this group. And more importantly, if you want mentorship with some of the best people out there, that is why you joined the Academy. And I know right now, a lot of people say that all the time is I’m not sure what the benefit of my membership is, and that’s why people drop off. And that’s why people don’t renew is they’re not getting enough out of the Academy. So that’s what, that’s what I want to achieve. And that’s how I am going to grade our executive committee. If, if we do get elected is at the end of this, if it’s very clear, have we achieved our mission, that the members know that our whole goal is to help them specialize in sports and to get a job in sports. Right. I think that’s what people want in sports. That’s a big, big things is an advanced orthopedics. This is sports it’s different, right? So that that’s, that’s kinda, that’s kind of what, what we hope to accomplish.

Speaker 1 (09:47):

And how, how would you go about doing that? What changes do you think need to happen to number one, help more people join the section? Cause I know it, it is hard, you know, I’m part of, I’m part of the sports section I joined a couple of years ago. I let my orthopedic one last. So I left the orthopedic and I joined sports. And I’m also involved in the private practice section. And I know it’s something that we’re always trying to think about in the private practice section is how can we get more people to join? What are we missing here? You know, how can we be more inclusive? So how can the sports section be more inclusive to get those people in, to get them from what it sounds like you’re saying, mentorship, education, jobs and just fulfillment within your career. It sounds like

Speaker 2 (10:40):

Here, and this is what I think it is. The past leadership has been amazing. Right? And the stuff that even the current board has done in this last few years is really evolved, right? So there’s tarnished take the next step with technology and all these other things. They’re doing a really good job with that sort of thing. To me though, I, I really think we need to refresh just the vision a little bit. And I want to reevaluate all of our decisions in all of the things we provide. And just answer that simple question. Does this help you become either become or become a better sports physical therapist. Right. And I think, I think we need to take a step back. Sometimes it’s not about what we think is cool or what we think is a list of objectives. It’s about how do the memberships actually get value out of the Academy.

Speaker 2 (11:26):

And I think that’s, that’s the biggest thing we’re going to do. So that’s a little bit of the vision, but we’re going to reevaluate everything, right. There’s, you know, one of the big ones is education, right? One of the big ones education and staying current with, with research, right. So recently just in the last year or so the Academy got rid of one of the free benefits of being a member was access to the international journal of sports, physical therapy. And I think that was one of the biggest reasons why a lot of people were members, right. They got, they get access to a free, very well like established journal. Right. So they took that away from the membership a little bit. And again, I just wonder why, I mean, if the reason you join is to, to learn and stay current about being a sport, physical therapist, I don’t want to take away benefits.

Speaker 2 (12:11):

Right? Like there’s, there’s gotta be a way we do that. Right. so I, I, you know, there’s, there’s, there’s a ton of different avenues, right? Like you said, it’s hard to go over this and just like a quick like kind of podcast, but I think it’s about like networking opportunities. Cause it’s all about who, you know, in this world. Right. But for me, it’s about education and mentorship, right? We have some amazing clinicians that are part of this Academy that we need to learn from and that we need to go work with. Right. So we have residencies, we have fellowships. Those are great well-established things. Those are large, those are daunting, right? Like, like that’s a big commitment, both time and finance for you to go do one of those things. We need to have more accessible opportunities, either online or shorter term, those types of things.

Speaker 2 (12:56):

I think we need to leverage, remember sports, physical therapy. That’s where my background comes in. That’s all I’ve done. My whole career is work with pro athletes and stuff. Right. Is how do you get a job in pro sports? How do you get a job in the MLB or the NBA or the NFL? Right. We need to leverage our, our connections. Like I’m friends with people in all these leagues, the PTs and all these leagues. And I’ve reached out to all of them. And I said, we need to start collaborating more. What if we have joint education sessions? What if we have mentorship opportunities where you come to spring training with me for eight weeks. Right. And who do you think is going to get a job when a physical therapy job opens up now in major league baseball, somebody that’s just off the street with a good resume or somebody that’s actually done a mentorship program with somebody already established.

Speaker 2 (13:40):

So that’s part of the things that I think that’s what I bring to the table is these connections and sports. And these are the things I’ve done. Like I, to me, I feel like I am I’m representative of the membership. I’m a clinician, you know, we treat our butts off. Right, right. And we’re still working with people, you know, all the time we published clinical research, right. Impactful clinical research that have great implications that everybody wants to learn from. Right. We teach this to everybody after we publish it. Right. So we’re on the trenches. We’re working with the pro athletes. We’re working with the collegiate athletes. Like I want to give people the opportunities that I’ve been fortunate to have. And I think that’s a big part through networking, mentorship, education. I think those are the three big areas that are really push.

Speaker 1 (14:24):

And I really loved the mentoring aspect or Avenue of that. Especially like you said, maybe some online options and things like that. Obviously during COVID these things have become more and more prevalent, but I think it also does well for members who may be don’t have, don’t have the finances. They don’t have the resources to let’s say, even travel to a continuing education moment or even go to CSM. So I think to make things more accessible to all members or to people who want to become a member, right. Cause you may have someone out there is like, I’d really like, want to be part of the sports section. But man, I don’t know if I can, like you said, do a residency or fellowship, which can be very expensive and time consuming or maybe they’re a later in life PT and they have a family that they have to care for and they can’t go off for 12 weeks or something like that. So I think to have those virtual options would be really great. And, and for me, I think it would be something that would really generate some interest in the section.

Speaker 2 (15:38):

Yeah. And that’s my wheelhouse. Right. And that’s what, that’s what we did. I mean, it’s funny. Like I stumbled into online education. Like I don’t even like 12 years ago now. Right. Remember where the we’re the old ones again, Karen. Right. I stumbled into that and have all these online courses now. And I did it for one simple reason. I was unable to travel around and teach. Right. Because I, I was now in getting a new baby. Yeah. Well, no, I was, no, that was before that I was in professional baseball. Right. So meaning like I worked 24 hours a day, seven days a week. I can’t take a weekend off and be like, Hey, I know you guys have a game tonight, but I’m going to go teach a course in Louisiana. Right. Like they couldn’t do that. So I got in that, but then yes, then you get you, and now you add family on top of that, right?

Speaker 2 (16:23):

Like, yeah, that’s a big deal. So, so I started teaching online to kind of scratch that itch for myself, to keep giving back right. And sharing and educating and men that it’s amazing how many people around the world you can touch by, by doing it online. And again, we need to catch up with that and just shows again, like, like, you know, the current state of even like the AP team totally. That they don’t, they don’t even have a way to a good, solid way to be able to offer continuing education credit for people with online courses. It’s a mess. It just shows you how, like it’s a, we’re, we’re getting a little outdated. I think we just need to refresh the vision for modern day, you know, this next generation of VCPS and people that want to get further along in their career, we need to meet them where they are.

Speaker 2 (17:06):

And not just assume that like some of the old standards that they’ve done. Right. And I think that’s why bringing some new vision to the board is helpful. Right. I mean, the board has been pretty consistent for a long time. Right. The board has been quite academic for a long time right now. Right. There’s not a lot of clinical leaders that are in the trenches, like working with athletes every day. I think there should be both, right. Like, don’t get me wrong. I think we need both. We need clinical and academic in there, but I think we need to collaborate on that because I do think there’s different perspectives if you know, depending on what you do all day. So I’m pretty excited for those things. Cause I actually think that’s going to make a big impact. And, and again, I just think like the benefit of being a member is going to skyrocket. You have all these opportunities.

Speaker 1 (17:51):

Absolutely. I agree. And now before we kind of wrap things up, is there what would you like the listeners to kind of take away from the discussion? What is your main point?

Speaker 2 (18:05):

Yeah. vote for me now. I’m just getting abs. No, in all honesty, I’m like, I, I’m pretty humble about it. Like if, if, if I’m not elected, like I, it’s not a big deal to me. I CA I can’t wait to continue to continue to contribute to the Academy and help people. Right. For me, it was like, this is the right time to kind of give back and to be able to do that. I think my experience, I think I’ve done what a lot of people join the Academy to try to also accomplish. I’ve been there. I’ve done that. I understand what they’re going through. And I’m, I want to get the Academy back to helping exactly, exactly. Achieve your goals. And that’s it, it’s about the member. It’s not about me. It’s about the membership. So yeah, and I think that’s it.

Speaker 2 (18:47):

And you know, again, just just you know, also throw up Mike Malaney again, as vice-president, because I humbly, I can’t do this by myself. Right. We’re all busy. Like you’re busy, I’m busy, we’re all busy, right. This is a team effort. And I think in some fresh vision of people that have this clinical background, like Mike and I, and I’ve been, I’ve been big sports PTs our whole career, like adding that to the current board that’s already in place, I think is going to be quite a nice dynamic that is going to really help lead this Academy in the future.

Speaker 1 (19:19):

Excellent. And now let’s talk a little bit more about you. Where can people find you, your, your podcast website, anything you want to share?

Speaker 2 (19:29):

Awesome. I’m easy to find, right? So I’m just Mike If you want to learn a little bit more about this election and the process with that, you can go to, and there’s some info on there that you can, you can get I have a podcast, I have a blog, you know, kind of blot for over 10 years. So there’s like a thousand articles on there. So people always ask like, where should I, where should I get started? I’m like, well, you got a lot to catch up on. Right. There’s a lot of articles out there, but yeah, no, I’m easy. I’m on social media. Like I just, I really am at the point in my career where I want to help others. So I, you know, we try to hit every, every channel we can to, to have the most impact. So, so yeah, just head to my website, there’s a lot to learn on there. And and like I said, Mike, and you get a little bit more info about this election.

Speaker 1 (20:14):

Excellent. And last question. What advice would you give to your younger self knowing where you are now in your life and in your career? What advice would you give yourself as that fresh face? New grad?

Speaker 2 (20:28):

You know, this is, this is actually funny because I, I just wrote this to my, to my newsletter last week. Right. It was kind of funny that I literally, I just wrote this last week and I just wrote like the next one for this weekend, that’s going out this weekend. But I, there was one thing I accidentally did in my career that I stumbled into that I, I it’s become clear now that that is what we should do. And I said, like, I am pretty certain at this point, everything I’ve accomplished in my career is because I specialized ready. And in this week’s newsletter, I actually talk about like how to, how to arc your career path that way to do that. But like, I remember early in my career, like I got, I got some heat from some other physical therapists that I was too specialized.

Speaker 2 (21:13):

Right. And you were like, no, you need to be generally, like, you’re not good with neurologic injuries or something. And I’m like, all right. But like, for me, like getting really good at one thing helped me achieve all the goals that I wanted to get to, to get a job in professional baseball, right. To win a world series, right. To, to open my own clinic, to open my own gym and sports performance center. Right. It was all because I specialize in something. So we need to be general, you need to start general, but if there’s some your passionate about say, it’s like soccer, football, whatever sport it may be. Right. You just, every second of downtime, you have learn how to be the best at that. Just be absolutely amazing at something. And I think that was the biggest key to my career is overhead athletes and shoulders, like in baseball.

Speaker 2 (21:58):

Like I just, I got super lucky that I engulfed myself in that environment and became a specialist in that. Right. And again, just, that’s another thing that the Academy needs to do, and it needs to help people that want to get super specialized in one thing to be able to do that. So I think that would be my biggest thing right now. You know, it keeps evolving as we, as, you know, as we get older, but I think right now is for an early career professional is master the basics, but follow your passion and make sure you are just, you’re putting your extra grind and hustle into like, become the best you can at that side. And then it’ll grow, you know, grow over time. And then when you’re lucky like us, Karen, and you’re a little bit older, you, you go to work one day and you’re like, gosh, I just have, I have six baseball players today. That’s all that’s on my schedule. It’s like, it’s pretty cool. You know, I played catch three times yesterday. Right. Like that’s kind of cool. I got, I got paid to play catch. Right. That’s kind of cool. So, yeah. So I think that would be my biggest advice really for the early career professionals. That would be good.

Speaker 1 (22:58):

Well, what, great advice. Thank you so much. I don’t think I’ve heard that one yet. And I think that’s a great, I think that’s great. And hopefully that will help some of our students and younger clinicians as they try and figure out and navigate their career. So thank you so much and thanks for taking the time out and coming on today. I really appreciate it.

Speaker 2 (23:15):

Thanks for having me, Karen. You’re the best. This is awesome. And I appreciate it. The LC in the future, I’m sure fingers crossed

Speaker 3 (23:22):

One day. We’ll actually be able to see each other in person, right.

Speaker 1 (23:26):

And everyone, thank you so much for listening. Have a great couple of days and stay healthy, wealthy and smart.


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©2019 Karen Litzy Physical Therapy PLLC.
©2019 Karen Litzy Physical Therapy PLLC.