EDCare offers comprehensive care for athletes with eating disorders. Call (866) 771-0861 to learn how we can help you.

The Athlete Program at EDCare is a highly structured and specialized addition to our Partial Hospitalization Program in Denver, Colorado. This unique eating disorder treatment program is specifically designed for high-performance athletes. Upon admission, athletes will gain access to our team of experts who specialize in working with athletes to address mental health, physical health, dietetics, and performance.

Our goals are focused on interrupting the eating disorder and empowering athletes to return to their sport or performance stronger, both mentally and physically. Our interdisciplinary team works closely with the athlete’s family and “sport family” in order to keep them connected to their sport/team while working to address their personal struggles. We understand the commitment it takes to succeed as an athlete and recognize the fear involved in taking a break from sport in order to address the eating disorder. We strive to make this transition as smooth as possible and help the athlete gain needed skills and tools to recover from the eating disorder while strengthening their ability to return to sport and life elevated.

This sport and performance program follows our CAMSA® treatment model and focuses on healing the whole athlete – mind, body and spirit. Our multidisciplinary team is dedicated to helping individuals interrupt the eating disorder and integrate recovery-focused skills into BOTH their athletic and daily lives. Importantly, discussions surrounding the impact of continued participation in sport or performance on the athlete’s health is an integral part of our treatment philosophy.

Meet the Athlete Program Team

NATASHA TRUJILLO, PHD, LP

Primary Therapist & Head of Athlete Program

AMY LAURENT, MD

Attending Psychiatrist

ALLIE DON SING, MA, LPCC

Mental Performance Coach

BRANDON KRESS, CSCS

Strength and Conditioning Coach

Sign to Look for:

· Decrease in physical and/or  psychological performance

· Change in weight or body shape

· Changes or isolation around mealtime

· Shifts in mood or irritability

· Conflict with teammates and coaches

· Change in behavior around teammates and coaches

· Inability to concentrate during performance or practice

· Peer reports of concern to coach

· Amenorrhea

· Chronic or overuse injuries

· Obsession, rituals, or rigidity around food or exercise

· Training beyond prescribed routine

· Training when injured or tired

· Obsessing about training details or feeling distressed when training routine is interrupted

In addition to all of the services of our Partial Hospitalization Program, our program includes:

We know how important training is in elite athletics and consider it an integral part of our treatment program. Training is supported by our medical staff, our strength and conditioning coach, and our sport psychology team. Upon receiving medical clearance, each individual athlete works with our consultants in sports and fitness.

Patients receive a variety of sport and performance psychology services. Patients meet with their individual counseling and sport psychologist twice a week and attend weekly athlete-centered groups. Our sport and performance psychology consultants also work with patients in the gym to help them integrate recovery-focused skills into their training.

Sport-Focused Group Therapy: 

The sport nutrition group’s goal is to educate athletes by teaching evidence-based sport nutrition guidance to fuel fitness and athletic/sport performance. It will apply the science of sports nutrition and encourage athletes to build adaptive, healthy strategies and meal plans to enhance lifelong health, fitness, and optimal performance.

The goal of the Athlete Mental Skills group is to equip athletes with knowledge and techniques for utilizing mental skills to enhance performance. Athletes receive practical, evidence-based sport and performance psychology mental skills training to implement in their performance domain, and in their daily lives. Topics including but not limited to goal setting, imagery, and self-talk are learned, practiced, and applied to optimize performance while enhancing well-being. At the elite level, the mental game is often what sets an athlete apart from their competitors. As group participants experience the benefits of employing mental skills for performance enhancement, we also encourage our patients to apply these same skill sets in the pursuit of recovery.

The intention of the Athlete Body Image group is for each participant to gain an understanding of body image, examine the development of body image, and cultivate a healthier relationship with one’s body. The group works to achieve these goals through the development of critical awareness, productive/applicable skills, and cognitive change. For athletes, a deep comprehension of the impact of sport and culture on the development and maintenance of one’s relationship with their body is critical for effective exploration and processing of challenges to support healthy body image. These topics are approached through a holistic lens that acknowledges and appreciates the unique experiences of high-performance athletes.

The goal of the Return to Sport/Return to Life group is to prepare the athlete to return to their sport environment with increased knowledge and awareness of all aspects of their identity and ways to capitalize on skills learned during treatment to aid on their transition and re-entry to sport/life. Conversation topics including but not limited to values, transitions, athletic identity, career counseling, grief and loss, and movement within society are explored. The group seeks to help athletes deepen exploration of ways to interact with their spot and other aspects of their identity in more adaptive ways as they transition out of treatment.

The intention of the intersectionality and sport culture group is to recognize and explore the various ways in which an individual’s personal culture, broader societal culture, and the culture of sport impact their experience as a person and as an athlete. The group will guide athletes through their own exploration of identifying cultural characteristics within and outside of sport to help provide insights and perspectives about patterns of thought and behavior. Sport culture is a critical factor for athletes to process, as sport and team culture directly influence areas of performance and well-being. These topics are discussed to help athletes develop a stronger understanding of self and others and to explore sport culture aspects that impact their eating disorder and general lived experience. As topics discussed in this group can be sensitive for some, creating an environment of safety and acceptance will be of utmost priority to ensure athletes can openly share and process.

POD (Peer Oriented Discussion) is a process group that meets 3x/week.

Admissions Process

The first step on your journey to recovery is contacting EDCare to schedule a free, confidential assessment for our program and ask any immediate questions you may have regarding treatment. You will initially speak with the head of our athlete program, who will be able to answer any specific questions you have about treatment. After that, you will be connected with an admissions counselor who will gather the remaining information needed for admission.

Assessments generally take about one hour and can be done in person or over the phone if distance is an issue. During the assessment, you will discuss your medical history, previous treatment, if any, and provide information on your individual circumstances and desires from treatment. This comprehensive assessment process not only helps us guide you to the most appropriate treatment option but, also allows us to put together a treatment team tailored to your individual needs.

What To Expect.

Anxiety and fear are common feelings to experience before beginning treatment. Know that within 72 hours of admission you will be participating in creating a treatment plan designed to fit your athletic needs. To help you prepare, let’s explore what your first two days in our Partial Hospitalization Program (PHP) will look like.

Your Admissions Clinician will contact you the day before to confirm arrival time and answer any questions. If you are staying at our Connections House or Apartment please bring your luggage and personal belongings with you. When you arrive, check-in with the receptionist at the front desk.

Orientation includes:

  • Complete remaining paperwork
  • Meet with a member of our Finance Team
  • Review patient handbook with Admissions Clinician
  • Receive assigned locker key for valuables
  • Tour treatment center
  • Meet our Milieu Therapists
  • Meet with EDCare Physician
  • Meet your treatment team:
    • Primary Therapist (i.e., counseling & sport psychologist)
    • Family Therapist
    • Dietitian
    • Psychiatrist
    • Mental Performance Coach
    • Strength & Conditioning Coach

“The Athlete Program at EDCare made such an impact on my recovery. It taught me the art of being mindful. I learned to slow down for once, take in my surroundings, and pay attention to my body’s signals. I was able to be vulnerable about my fears, process my emotions, and grieve the identity that no longer defined me. This would never have been possible without EDCare’s athletic program, and for that I will always be thankful.” – Former Patient

Take Action

The treatment of eating disorders can occur in multiple settings depending on the severity of an athlete’s illness. Our Athlete clinicians are available for consultations to help you determine the best course of action regarding your individual cases. If you are concerned about an athlete under your care, please refer the athlete to a mental health professional and medical doctor for further evaluation, and contact EDCare.

Select a location to learn more.

DenverCO SpringsKansas CityOmaha