What are esports?

Esports, or competitive video gaming, are a fast-growing international phenomenon where competitors from different leagues or teams face off in the same games that you may play on your mobile device or video game system at home. These competitors are known as esports athletes. At Cleveland Clinic, our Esports Medicine program refers to esports athletes as neurocognitive athletes. 

Why choose our Esports Medicine program?

Cleveland Clinic Esports Medicine program provides expertise in the comprehensive care of individuals participating in competitive video gaming. As with traditional athletes, esports athletes have unique sport-specific training and injury prevention needs. Our Esports Medicine team is primarily focused on the treatment and prevention of esports related injuries, as well as a commitment to protecting and enhancing the health, safety and welfare of all esports athletes. 

Our Services

Our Esports Medicine team has a unique skill set and comprehensive background to provide esports athletes with cutting edge performance enhancement and injury prevention strategies. We are utilizing cutting edge proprietary neuro-cognitive assessment hardware and software to assist in the performance enhancement, and we have outlined appropriate ergonomic, training and fitness recommendations including:

  • Prevention, evaluation and management of esports related injuries
  • Esports athlete neurocognitive assessment and analysis
  • Gaming ergonomic evaluations (chair, desk, monitor, keyboard, mouse)
  • Esports athlete nutrition, exercise, strength and conditioning education
  • Esports stretches and training recommendations
  • Esports vision screening and vision training
  • Esports psychology and team dynamics
  • Guidelines and education regarding banned substances in esports
Our Team

Our Team

Our Esports Medicine Team

Dominic King, DO
Sports Medicine Physician
Director, Esports Medicine Program

Caitlin Lewis, MD
Sports Medicine Physician

Mark Schickendantz, MD
Sports Medicine Surgeon

Jonathan Schaffer, MD, MBA
Orthopaedic Surgeon

Gary Calabrese, DPT
Senior Director, Rehabilitation and Sports Therapy

Jason Cruickshank, ATC, CSCS
Cleveland Clinic Athletic Trainer
Esports Neurocognitive, Strength and Conditioning Specialist

David Graygo, MPT
Cleveland Clinic Manual Physical Therapist
Esports Ergonomic Specialist

Drew Schwartz, DC
Cleveland Clinic Chiropractic Physician
Esports Ergonomics and Injury Prevention Specialist

Da’Von Aaron, ATC, CES, OPE-C
Cleveland Clinic Athletic Trainer
Esports Injury Prevention Specialist

Justin Belle, ATC
Cleveland Clinic Athletic Trainer
Esports Injury Prevention Specialist

Diane Tucker, OD
Cleveland Clinic Optometrist
Esports Vision Specialist

Katherine Patton, RD
Cleveland Clinic Registered Dietitian
Esports Nutrition Specialist

Matthew Sacco, PhD
Cleveland Clinic Psychologist
Esports Psychology Specialist

Teams We Work With

Teams We Work With

Cleveland Clinic's Esports Program is currently partnered with:

Exciting partnerships with additional collegiate and professional esports teams will be announced soon.



Patient Resources

Cleveland Clinic Health Essentials:

Proper gaming ergonomics - including chair height, desk height, monitor height, distance from the monitor, sitting posture and positioning of the hands, wrists and forearms - can help to reduce fatigue, strain and overuse. This figure outlines comprehensive ergonomic gaming recommendations made by the Cleveland Clinic Esports Medicine Program.

Resources for Medical Professionals

Cleveland Clinic articles:

  • Sports Medicine Enters the Field of Competitive Gaming
  • The Gamer’s Health Guide – Managing Care for Esports Athletes
  • Finger, Hand and Wrist Stretches to Prevent Gaming Injuries
  • Importance of Good Posture while Gaming
  • Esports medicine presentations, posters, panels and podcasts:
    • “The Physical Therapy Approach to Esports”. 2021 Sports Medicine Summit. Cleveland, OH. Virtual. October 30, 2021.
    • “Esports Medicine – Caring for Synaptic Specialists”. 2021 AASP Annual Conference. Virtual. October 6, 2021.
    • “Cleveland Clinic Esports Medicine – the Future of Synaptic Specialists” Cleveland Clinic Sports Health, Fellows Conference. Cleveland, OH. October 22, 2021.
    • “Esports Medicine Update, Caring for Competitive Video Game Athletes”. 2021 Bi-Annual Warthog Conference. Virtual. June 12, 2021.
    • ”Esports Medicine – Injuries and Management Trends”. Cleveland Clinic Sports Health Summit. Virtual. November 6, 2020.
    • “Esports Medicine and the Future of Treating Synaptic Specialists”. 2020 Joint Commission on Sports Medicine and Science (JCSMS) Annual Meeting, Minneapolis, MN. March 1, 2020.
    • “The Future of Esports and Esports Medicine”. Greater Cleveland Sports Commission. Cleveland Cavalier’s Legion Lair, Cleveland, OH. February 18, 2020.
    • “Esports: The Rise of the Synaptic Specialist”, OMED Annual Conference, Baltimore, Maryland. 2019.
    • “Esports and Esports Medicine”, Apollo Society Annual Meeting, Cleveland, OH, 2019.
    • “Esports and Esports Medicine”, Warthog Society Biannual Meeting, Durham, NC, 2019.
Research & Innovations

Research & Innovations

Esports Medicine Innovation and Research Group

The Cleveland Clinic Esports Medicine Innovation and Research Group is a collaborative consortium focused on clinical research of esports athletes along with developing new technologies to assess and enhance the unique skills of esports athletes and help to decrease injuries related to competitive gaming We are currently completing several IRB approved research studies to better understand the demographics of esports athletes, the training demands of these athletes, injury rates in esports, how to assess and enhance their neurocognitive performance and better outline the individualized needs of the esports athlete. 

Current research affiliates:

  • Cleveland Cavaliers Legion Gaming Club
  • University of Akron Varsity Esports
  • Ohio University Varsity Esports
  • Spire Institute

If you or your company are interested in meeting with the Cleveland Clinic Esports Medicine Innovation and Research Group to discuss a potential research project or joint development partnership, please contact Dr. Dominic King at kingd2@ccf.org.




Esports athletes interested in being seen in Esports Medicine Program may call 216.518.3475 to arrange for an appointment.


Cleveland Clinic Sports Medicine Center
5555 Transportation Blvd.
Garfield Heights, OH 44125