Belmont physical therapy alumnus Keith Cronin is part of a team of health professionals featured in a new PBS documentary about reducing concussions in high school football. The documentary, entitled “The Smartest Team,” shows how football programs and athletes can reduce concussions and their effects by playing smarter. The program premiered on Oklahoma Public Television last month and will roll out to all other PBS stations this fall. Cronin was recently interviewed about his participation in the documentary by Fox 2 in St. Louis, Mo.
Cronin earned his Doctorate of Physical Therap from Belmont University in 2008 and is currently a physical therapist in St. Louis, Mo., working on sports injury prevention and coaching education community outreach programs. He is a member of the Team of Experts at MomsTEAM.com, the premier online information gateway for parents of children who play youth sports. MomsTeam.com was founded by parenting expert Brooke de Lench, the author of Home Team Advantage: The Critical Role of Mothers in Youth Sports (HarperCollins 2006).
de Lench was the brainchild behind “The Smartest Team,” documenting how she, Cronin and other health professionals worked with the football program at Newcastle High School in rural Oklahoma to address the challenges concussions pose to the sport, reducing the concussion rate in one season by 75 percent.
While at Belmont, Cronin wrote his doctoral thesis on identifying elbow injury risk among softball pitchers, and his course of study included a physical therapy clinical rotation at Champion Sports in Birmingham, Ala. under the direction of world-renowned orthopedic surgeon James Andrews. He is a certified strength and conditioning specialist and holds certification in the treatment of orthopedic injuries.
Over the past three years, Cronin has authored more than 60 articles on various sports and health-related websites. A former college baseball player, American Legion baseball coach and personal trainer, he has extensive experience working both to rehabilitate injuries suffered by and improve the performance of young athletes.
In 2008, he was awarded the Olin Business Cup by Washington University for medical product innovation for his work on the Medibite Jaw Rehabilitation Systems. He currently serves as the medical organizer for the annual Missouri Cowbell Half Marathon in St. Charles, Mo. and lives in the St. Louis area with his wife and daughter.