• Press Release

Mount Sinai Named Official Medical Service Provider for International Sumo League

Physicians from the Department of Rehabilitation and Human Performance will play a key role in preparing athletes for tournaments

  • New York, NY
  • (February 15, 2024)

For the first time, the Mount Sinai Health System has been named the official medical service provider for the International Sumo League—the world’s largest league of sumo wrestlers. Physicians from the Department of Rehabilitation and Human Performance are playing a key role in preparing the elite sumo wrestlers competing in international tournaments, including the upcoming World Championship Sumo at the Prudential Center in New Jersey on Sunday, February 18. 

“We are excited to partner with International Sumo League and offer comprehensive care and expert guidance to these incredible athletes, and we can’t wait to watch everyone’s hard work pay off at the 2024 World Championship Sumo,” says Joseph Herrera, DO, the Lucy G. Moses Professor and Chair of Rehabilitation and Human Performance, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. “Our talented staff will be providing onsite medical care at events for these competitors while also providing guidance to improve overall human performance.”

Under the partnership with International Sumo League, Mount Sinai Physicians will be ringside during these events, evaluating and treating a wide range of athlete injuries. The Mount Sinai team will also focus on working with the athletes on injury prevention and optimizing their human performance outside of the wrestling ring. Sumo wrestlers will participate in Mount Sinai’s specialized “Performance360” program, which customizes strategies to enhance and improve strength and conditioning, nutrition, and mental health, and address possible medical issues.  Mount Sinai will also launch new research on sumo wrestlers—a group of athletes with high levels of muscle and body mass—that are understudied and a new area of medicine. The work will focus on the physiology of a sumo wrestler, along with what injuries they are prone to, and injury prevention.

“We are so excited to be helping these world-class athletes—their training, fueling, and build is so unique, and we can’t wait to optimize their health and human performance. This partnership highlights our skill and expertise and dedication to this sport,” says Mariam Zakhary, DO, Assistant Professor of Rehabilitation and Human Performance at Icahn Mount Sinai and program director for the sports medicine fellowship. “We not only see the importance of providing the best care for these athletes, but are looking into research to further the sport through data collection and analysis.”

The International Sumo League’s partnership with Mount Sinai runs through December 2024. Physicians from Mount Sinai’s Department of Rehabilitation and Human Performance have also partnered with USA Fencing as its official medical services provider.

About the Mount Sinai Health System

Mount Sinai Health System is one of the largest academic medical systems in the New York metro area, with more than 43,000 employees working across eight hospitals, over 400 outpatient practices, nearly 300 labs, a school of nursing, and a leading school of medicine and graduate education. Mount Sinai advances health for all people, everywhere, by taking on the most complex health care challenges of our time — discovering and applying new scientific learning and knowledge; developing safer, more effective treatments; educating the next generation of medical leaders and innovators; and supporting local communities by delivering high-quality care to all who need it.

Through the integration of its hospitals, labs, and schools, Mount Sinai offers comprehensive health care solutions from birth through geriatrics, leveraging innovative approaches such as artificial intelligence and informatics while keeping patients’ medical and emotional needs at the center of all treatment. The Health System includes approximately 7,300 primary and specialty care physicians; 13 joint-venture outpatient surgery centers throughout the five boroughs of New York City, Westchester, Long Island, and Florida; and more than 30 affiliated community health centers. We are consistently ranked by U.S. News & World Report's Best Hospitals, receiving high "Honor Roll" status, and are highly ranked: No. 1 in Geriatrics and top 20 in Cardiology/Heart Surgery, Diabetes/Endocrinology, Gastroenterology/GI Surgery, Neurology/Neurosurgery, Orthopedics, Pulmonology/Lung Surgery, Rehabilitation, and Urology. New York Eye and Ear Infirmary of Mount Sinai is ranked No. 12 in Ophthalmology. U.S. News & World Report’s “Best Children’s Hospitals” ranks Mount Sinai Kravis Children's Hospital among the country’s best in several pediatric specialties.

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