Hello, I'm Dr. Garrett Kuhlman.
I've dedicated my life to soccer: playing it, studying it, and helping others perform at their best. With The Soccer Assist, I'm excited to help lifelong soccer players like me keep playing the sport we love, pain-free.
My name is Garrett, and I'm a licensed Chiropractor and Certified Chiropractic Sports Physician (CCSP®) practicing in Petoskey, Michigan, where my wife and I moved in 2019 to open our own practice, Elite Movement Chiropractic Clinic. I've played soccer since I was four years old and went on to play after high school at Albion College. I then continued my playing career at a (decently) high level at Logan College of Chiropractic. During my time studying and living all things sports medicine, I've worked with athletes from all across the country and from all sports, including through treatment rotations at University of Missouri (Mizzou), Lindenwood University, Missouri Baptist University, and USA Track and Field.
I still play pick-up soccer once a week and compete in the Petoskey Fresh Coast Classic Soccer Tournament every year. Now with a successful chiropractic business, a two-year-old son, and countless hours working with both youth and adult athletes in the community, I'm excited to help lifelong soccer players like me keep playing the sport we love, pain-free.
My Injury Story
Dr. Kuhlman started The Soccer Assist after overcoming a mental blockage about his own injury and chronic pain.
I tore my ACL in 2014 playing soccer - the last game of my last competitive tournament. Like many athletes, I had to go the surgery and rehab route, and I honestly thought that fixed it.
Everything seemed to be great until years later, when the pain came back.
Years had passed without feeling any pain whatsoever. But for some reason when 2021 rolled around, I began to suffer from recurring pain in my knee that would get worse every time I played. It didn't seem fair: after spending all that money on surgery and intensive rehab, I just wanted to keep playing.
Devoted to my local teams, I continued playing despite persistent pain and the nagging thoughts that came with knowing better. One summer night after a particularly awful session, I sat in my car as the sun went down and looked at my swollen and tender knee, screaming in my mind, “JUST WORK!”
I felt frustrated and helpless. I couldn’t silence that thought in the back of my head: “Maybe it's just time to hang up the cleats and be done.”
Coming home that night, I was not in a good place. I was devastated: soccer had been my passion since I could remember, and I had built my whole life around it - how could I give it up now?
I was so saddened by the thought of it that it took a conversation with my wife to remind me that I was a more than just a soccer player: I was a doctor of sports medicine, and I needed to start treating myself like one of my own patients.
That moment of realization struck me like a thunderbolt. I had taken patients through hundreds of rehab plans, but up until that point I never saw myself as another patient needing care.
Well, I did it. I turned my doctor's eye inward and created my own program—with practical frameworks that fit easily into my hectic life. And I've been playing pain-free ever since.
In writing the rehab program for myself, I realized just how many players could benefit from programs like this. From college athletes to casual teams to Sunday League MVPs, thousands of soccer players are in the same situation:
- We want to keep playing, but have a new or chronic injury that keeps us from performing at our best, and
- We don't have the time, money, or desire to commit to a full outpatient physical therapy program
So, I decided to expand on what's worked for me and make soccer injury rehabilitation more accessible for everyone. Now with The Soccer Assist, I'm excited to share my practical prehab and rehab knowledge with others, so that all of us can get back on the pitch and keep playing the sport we love.