When Megan Zaner, D.C. (Florida, ’20) isn’t working in the private practice (Apex Chiropractic) she and her husband Paul Zaner, D.C. (Florida, ’20) will soon open, she can be found in remote locations, ready to care for extreme athletes in her role as Red Bull’s North American Certified Sport Chiropractor (a.k.a. the sports doc) and emergency responder.
“My primary job for their events is athlete care. I provide daily treatments such as physiotherapy and chiropractic evaluations and care. I’m on call and ready to move if they need me out on a course for emergency response to accidents, evaluations and transferring care to the local doctors or emergency transport. They give me a headset with multiple channels to get any emergency calls,” she explained.
“Red Bull days are 10-11 hours long in remote areas with no signal, often in freezing cold, snowy conditions in the morning and then the sun blaring all afternoon. I get to watch people flip and hurl themselves on a bike down a hill while standing by to provide chiropractic care at any given moment,” she elaborated.
Dr. Zaner’s first practice was located inside a CrossFit gym in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
“I developed such strong bonds with the CrossFit athletes and their families that, even after moving back to Florida, I still care for them. It wasn’t the original plan but there was a high enough demand for sports chiropractic care that now I fly to New Mexico every 6-8 weeks and I also do phone consults with my patients. I’ll send them videos with stretches or exercises I want them to do which makes it possible to guide them from a distance. Leaving was definitely bittersweet,” she said.
As an undergraduate, Dr. Zaner had her heart set on physical therapy. After a sports injury in high school, she was shown great compassion during a scary time in her life which led her to minor in sports psychology.
“Athletes are my favorite population to work with and I knew I needed that knowledge to help them come out of their chronic injuries,” she said. “I fell in love with chiropractic care because there is something for everybody! There is so much to learn and so many specialties to pick from which gives every student incredible autonomy. I get to fully engage with my patients and create their specific care plans. I love the mental challenge of figuring out what the core issue is and how to help that specific patient.”
Dr. Megan is now making plans for more travel opportunities with Red Bull. “I’d like to get our practice started but then let my husband run it while I’m away,” she said.
She’s done two events with them so far (both in 2021): the Red Bull Rampage near Zion National Park in Virgin, Utah and the Cliff Diving World Series in Boston. This October, she’ll be working the Red Bull Rampage for a second time. Her goal is to become internationally certified so she can travel the world with the Red Bull extreme sports teams!
To say the least, Dr. Megan is grateful and extremely excited about her fast-paced chiropractic career. Her extreme excitement seems quite fitting for extreme sports.