About Dr. Justin
The journey to better health and well being started for Dr. Justin after suffering a very serious injury. While playing in a football game his senior year of high school, Dr. Justin took a knee to the lower back and it was later revealed that this caused a fracture of the L4-L5 transverse process bones of the spine as well as a bruised kidney.
“At the time, it was a very scary injury, although I did not realize it when it happened. I actually kept playing in the game for another two quarters until I finally collapsed in pain.”
After being put in a back brace for six weeks, Dr. Justin was cleared to resume full activity and after one practice, he played in the state semi-final football game.
“Once they cleared me, I did not think twice about playing again. I wanted to get back out there. But, I did think that it was a little odd that no one thought I needed any type of conditioning or strength work before I was ready to play. I think it was at that time that I realized there was a void in the rehabilitation field and that set me up for the career path that I chose.”
After high school, Dr. Justin enjoyed a baseball career at Ramapo College of New Jersey where he was named co-captain. Unfortunately, his final year was cut short after tearing his shoulder labrum when sliding in to home plate (don’t worry, he did score the winning run).
“As you can see, injuries had a huge impact on my athletic career which puts me in a unique position when dealing with patients. When they come to see me, I understand exactly where they are coming from because I have been there.”
After college, Dr. Justin decided that New York Chiropractic College was the best place to further his education. Not surprisingly, another athletic injury occurred there.
“I was going up for a shot while playing basketball and when I landed, I felt pain shoot from my back down to my right leg. I woke up the next morning with pain all the way down my leg, and no strength in my big toe.”
After many months of conservative treatment, Dr. Justin decided that surgery was the best option. Between semesters of school, he has an L4-L5 laminectomy/discectomy and two weeks later was back in the clinic treating patients.
“Many people think that it’s odd for me to talk about having surgery especially when I was in school to learn basically how to help people avoid it. I think it is actually the opposite. I believe I used the medical system exactly how I would want my own patient to use it. That is, exhaust all conservative treatment options and if we still have an issue, surgery may be the best option. Essentially, this is least invasive to most invasive. I am proud to say that I followed the exact process I would recommend a patient.”
Once again, after surgery the doctor recommended no type of rehabilitation whatsoever.
“After surgery, I was let out of the hospital that day and maybe had one follow up appointment after just to make sure the incision site was not infected. The surgeon did not recommend any type of rehabilitation or exercise protocol for me at that time. This absolutely amazed me. At this point, I was far enough into my education where I knew enough to help myself and essentially wrote my own rehab and strength program. I was essentially my own experiment. Looking back, it was the best education I could have ever received. They don’t teach that in a book.”
As a student, Dr. Justin maintained leadership positions as Co-President of the Sports Science and Human Performance Club and Officer of Motion Palpation Club. In 2011, he was selected to present his research at the American Chiropractic Association Sports Council Symposium held in San Juan, Puerto Rico. His topic, “Assessment of the Overhead Throwing Athlete” was presented to chiropractors from around the world. For his efforts, Dr. Justin received the Tom Hyde Award and 1st place at the symposium.
“This was a great opportunity for me while still a student to really show my passion for athletics. One of the main reasons I got into this field was because I wanted to continue to have a hand in sports. Even though I can no longer play, I want to do everything in my power to keep others healthy and on the field.”
In addition to private practice, Dr. Justin has been able to step outside of the office and work with ranges of athletes in many different settings. Notably, he was one of the team chiropractors for the Rutgers University Women’s Gymnastics Team for both the 2014 and 2015 seasons. He was also part of the medical staff for the 2012 US Senior Amateur Golf Open at Mountain Ridge Country Club in West Caldwell, New Jersey. In May 2015, Dr. Justin also had the honor of working on the athlete services staff at the Crossfit Regional Games in Hartford, Connecticut.
“Working with such high level athletes in these different sports has been one of the most rewarding things in my career. It was always a goal of mine to do things like this, and few things are more rewarding than having such an impact on these athletes then going out and watching them perform at such an incredible level.”
Dr. Justin is also recognized by the NSCA as a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS). The CSCS is nationally and internationally recognized as one of the highest-level certifications in the field.
“I have always had a passion for weight lifting and conditioning since I was in middle school. Now as a clinician, my experience in the strength and conditioning field has been invaluable for patient care. I often see athletes and active people who come in after getting hurt while lifting weights. The experience as a CSCS allows me to understand how they got injured and then help re-train them with proper movement and biomechanics so it does not happen again. I am a huge advocate of coordinating my care with personal trainers and strength coaches. I have found that this ensures the patient gets the best results possible.”
Another passion for Dr. Justin is teaching. He is currently an adjunct professor at Kean University where he teaches Exercise Testing and Interpretation within the Global Health and Fitness Department. He also lectures in the post-graduate department at his alma mater, New York Chiropractic College. His lecture topics involve rehabilitation, athletic injury, and human movement.
“Teaching has always been a passion of mine. This allows me to impact trainers, coaches, and doctors in the field and spread the word on human movement, athletic injury and functional movements.”