When, G. Douglas Andersen graduated from El Modena High School in Orange, California, it was with academic and athletic honors. Of his early football exploits, he says:
"The recognition for achievement in football was great.Football also left me with a neck that would get in a torticollis state, three or four times a year, for five to seven days at a time, which caused me obvious pain, discomfort, and frustration."
He then entered California State University at Fullerton, and joined Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity, a small house with 20 members. Upon his graduation, he left the largest house on the campus, with 85 members and 4 straight intramural sports championships. He was the first man to serve as president three terms, as well as the first active member in the chapter's history to win the fraternity's top achievement award, normally reserved for distinguished alumni only. While at California State, Fullerton, Dr. Andersen met Lisa Tenckhoff, whose brother, Carl, was beginning his internship at Pasadena College of Chiropractic.
"One day, when I was walking around campus, wearing a neck brace, Lisa told me about her brother. I had never been to a chiropractor before, but was willing to try anything. After my first adjustment from Dr. Tenckhoff, the pain that usually took one week to dissipate, with drugs and a neck brace, was gone in two days. I told my parents, who had many friends who were medical doctors, that the chiropractic treatment was the best thing to happen to my neck in years. I was upset that so many doctors had told my parents and me that if I went to a chiropractor, my neck would be permanently damaged. I feel the only reason my neck is not permanently damaged now is that I received chiropractic care."
Dr. Andersen graduated from California State University at Fullerton in 1980, with a bachelor of arts in business administration. In 1981, he began taking science courses and enrolled at Pasadena College of Chiropractic (now known as Southern California College of Chiropractic) in 1982. There are many reasons why Dr. Andersen wanted to be a chiropractor, one of which was his interest in nutrition. While in second term he met Dr. Jay Patt, who was an instructor at Pasadena.
"We were talking about nutrition one day when Dr. Patt overheard our conversation and joined in. He gave me a lecture tape from Dr. Jeffrey Bland. I played the tape on my commute home and found it to be absolutely fascinating."
He borrowed or bought every tape he could get hold of. For three years, as he did his daily two to three-hour commute, he'd listen to clinical nutrition lectures from people like Jeffrey Bland, Jonathan Wright, Allan Gaby, and many others. By the time he graduated, he estimated that during his commuting, he had listened to approximately 1,500 hours of clinical nutrition lectures and seminars.
Dr. Andersen received his bachelor of science degree in human biology in 1983, and graduated magna cum laude in 1985 when he received his Doctor of Chiropractic degree.
In 1986, Dr. Andersen began private practice in Brea, California. In February 1989, he was invited to join a pilot program with five other DCs. They were given staff privileges at Doctors Hospital of Buena Park. This was only the second hospital in California to have chiropractors on staff.
In March 1990, Dr. Andersen was named to assist Dr. Tim Brown as medical directors for the Association of Beach Volleyball Professionals. It is a salaried position that includes traveling with the Pro Volleyball Tour. Dr. Brown states, "We believe this is the first time in the history of professional sports that chiropractors have been hired to coordinate and manage all phases of healthcare for a professional sport."
In September of 1990, after 15 months of preparation, including lectures both in chiropractic staff and general staff meetings, as well as a fellowship course by Stephen Capps, D.C., Dr. Andersen became the first chiropractor in the history of the state of California to perform manipulation under anesthesia in a hospital. (Please watch for the exclusive feature story on Buena Park Doctors Hospital's In-Hospital Chiropractic Program in next month's issue.) He was also the first chiropractor to be fully accredited to perform this procedure and now proctors other chiropractors at Buena Park Doctors Hospital. Dr. Andersen is also involved in writing the bylaws for the National Council on Chiropractic Hospital Practice.
With his extensive nutritional, clinical, and sports background, we are very proud to announce Dr. Andersen as a new "DC" columnist. There is no doubt that he'll quickly become a popular contributor to our publication, sharing valuable tidbits and clinical information in the area of sports nutrition.