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Article from: "Chiropractic Achievers" Journal (1989)
Pick any hour of the day and Dr. Keith Jeffers will either be running, doing volunteer work or treating patients. Wasting time doesn't appear on his busy schedule, and neither does losing sight of his goals.
The San Diego DC is one of the country's best over-40 runners in addition to being a leading expert in sports chiropractic. He writes a column on his specialty and races regularly. In this year's International Masters Track & Field Championships, Dr. Jeffers had the best 10-kilometer (6.2 mile) time among the competitors. In another specialty, the steeplechase, he also placed high. Running and competing come naturally to the wiry practitioner, as does chiropractic.
Dr. Jeffers says he's been involved in sports since he was four; he's been running since junior high. A lower-back injury when he was 12 sent him to a chiropractor whose skills kept him on track. While attending junior college in 1968, Dr. Jeffers set the national 10K record with a 33:09 time, beating the old record by two minutes. He is perhaps his own best testimonial for chiropractic: twice-weekly adjustments keep him running without pause.
"For the past three Olympics, there have been chiropractors attending and treating athletes," says Dr. Jeffers. "The numbers bear out that we're the best trained doctors to treat athletes and that athletes prefer us to other doctors. Most of what are called 'overuse injuries' are actually caused by poor body mechanics that we can correct."
Steve Scott, holder of the American mile record, agrees. He and two other 1988 Olympians entrust their finely tuned bodies to Dr. Jeffers. When Steve Scott had a pinched nerve in his neck, he sought out Dr. Jeffers for treatment. "These elite athletes tend to have the same problems that all my other patients do, but they know enough to see that chiropractic really is the best way to correct their problems," says Dr. Jeffers.
In 1989, San Diego's chiropractic society named him (Dr. Jeffers) its Doctor of the Year. The state association followed suit later with its own Doctor of the Year honor. This recognition within his profession makes Dr. Jeffers very happy. It's also helped him become one of San Diego's most visible chiropractors.
Chiropractic is the key to his vitality, Dr. Jeffers adds. "If you exercise your whole life, as I have, you're healthier. Chiropractic helps me do that."
Dr. Jeffers had been coaching track and working with emotionally disturbed children through the 1970s until he decided to switch careers and study chiropractic. In 1981, he enrolled at Palmer-West and graduated three years later. With his experience in running, sports medicine became a specialty he didn't think twice about. "I know how much sports can change people's lives and I always knew that I wanted to do some kind of coaching. Sports are a very important part of my life, and that's been true for a long time."
His heroes run the gamut from basketball great Jerry West ("He could be a gentleman and still win at the end.") to consultant George Goodheart ("a tremendous person").
"Chiropractic keeps me going," he says, "But I guess the key is that you have to love what you're doing in order to do it well."
You might see Dr. Keith Jeffers zooming by on his run at 9 p.m. or attending a Golden Triangle merchants meeting or treating a young athlete. But look fast - he might be doing something else he loves if you blink.
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