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Episode #26: Lasers for Performance Enhancement with Dr. Jerome Rerucha

laser light show

Dr. Andrew Wells: Hello and welcome to The Laser Light Show, this is Dr. Andrew Wells and on today’s episode we have a special guest, Dr. Jerome Rerucha. This is episode #26 Lasers for Performance Enhancement.




Dr. Andrew Wells

Dr. Chad Woolner

Dr. Jerome Rerucha


Dr. Chad Woolner: Growing up in Portland, Oregon, I used to love going to laser light shows at the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry. They would put on these amazing light shows with incredible designs synced up to some of my favorite music. From the Beatles to Pink Floyd to Jimi Hendrix and Metallica; they were awesome. Little did I know then that lasers would have such a profound effect on my life decades later. As a chiropractic physician, I have seen first-hand just how powerful laser therapy is in helping patients struggling with a wide range of health problems. As the leader in laser therapy, Erchonia has pioneered the field in obtaining 20 of the 23 total FDA clearances for therapeutic application of lasers. On this podcast, we’ll explore the science and technology and physiology behind what makes these tools so powerful. Join me as we explore low level laser therapy. I’m Dr. Chad Woolner along with my good friend Dr. Andrew Wells and welcome to The Laser Light Show. 

Explore the transformative benefits of Low-Level Laser Therapy (LLLT) for athletes in our blog, How Laser Therapy Helps Athletes Physically and Mentally. Learn how LLLT can accelerate recovery, reduce pain, and enhance mental clarity. Dive into the world of laser therapy now!


Dr. Andrew Wells: All right, let’s get this kicked off. Dr. Rerucha. Always a pleasure to have you on the show. This is actually your second episode, I believe on The Laser Light Show. So welcome back.


Dr. Jerome Rerucha:  Yeah, thanks for having me. Dr. Andrew. It’s great to be here.


Dr. Andrew Wells: And I think Dr. Mark mentioned that you may have been one of the first doctors in our profession to really like and find low-level laser therapy.. 


Dr. Jerome Rerucha: I was not the first, but very early on. So there were a couple of great doctors. I wasn’t with Erchonia when they were in the garage as we referred to. But very shortly after, when they started doing seminars, and fortunately stumbled upon them. Even when nobody knew much about it. It was always really into the dynamics of the triad of health and always looking at how we can help people better. So when I saw lasers, I just kind of had an aha moment of how it was very different from everything else that was being done there. Whether it was the emotional techniques, the structure, the soft tissue, and all the subcategories. So it was really interesting. There wasn’t much research out there. But just from a practicality standpoint, you can really see there was something there. So it was super fun to be a part of figuring out how we were going to structure this? How is this really going to make sense when we teach this to other people, and then to see it grow with the way it has and all the research that Erchonia has done to really validate it besides just clinical protocols. It’s been a labor of love for a lot of people and just the right forces came together early on.


Dr. Andrew Wells: Oh, that’s amazing. And maybe for doctors who haven’t had a chance to hear your previous episode or maybe haven’t heard of you before, can you give us a little bit of background on what you do and what you’ve been doing over the last couple of decades in your practice?


Dr. Jerome Rerucha: So initially, I was under chiropractic care. Pretty early on, I probably went to what the general public would consider a very general chiropractor where he spent 30 seconds, 90 seconds with you, it was pretty much the same adjustment every time, and we had to drive 40 miles, which people would laugh at. I’m not that old. I’m 52. But even then it wasn’t like there were chiropractors everywhere. I’m from a very low-populated area in Nebraska anyway. So we went there pretty regularly. My sister had allergies. My dad had great success with chiropractors for musculoskeletal issues. My grandpa died when he was 100. He probably got adjusted the first time when he was four years old. And he used chiropractic throughout his whole life. So he’d call himself an expert of a patient of different types of chiropractors. He always used it. So anyway, I got introduced to it very early on. And then a chiropractor moved into our small town. And they were very different. He was an AKC K person, a world-class cranial path did nutrition. So that was just a whole nother level of something that interested me anyway, even though I was a very young person. So that set a great bar. I’m not a very genetic specimen, but I was really fascinated by strength and strength training. So that’s kind of where you really start seeing how chiropractic can help the performance side of things, but it’s not a substitute for lifting and activating the body. Nothing like it, but it was a big difference-maker, to say the least. And it was fascinating to me. The analysis of how they can see things that nobody else could see wasn’t right And then any exercise phys textbook or technique of lifting so that from a very early age, you know, the performance benefits that chiropractic can have, especially when you’re integrating proper training and eating involved with it. So my initial career then I was a full-time strength coach and a competitive strength athlete at a competitive level for over 14 years, still working out. And then when I did get into a position in strength and conditioning that everybody would want, and it was great. But it was kind of like I saw all these functional injuries, career-ending injuries of athletes, and I’m like, I don’t understand what my chiropractor is doing because it was as much of a magic show of pre and post. But I’m like, I guarantee that kid could be playing in two weeks. This is not a career-ending injury, you know, nothing on the MRI, nothing. This is just chronic, nagging injuries. So I’m like, You know what, I can’t take this. For my entire career, the school didn’t use chiropractors, there was no chiropractor around the school that had anything to do with how I grew up under what I thought all chiropractors did. So I was like, You know what, I’m just gonna have to go to school and figure this out, even though I was on the fast track for any job you want in strength and conditioning. So that’s kind of how I got here today and not sad about it, I learned a lot. Still, to this day, we put a tremendous amount of the performance to principles. And we’re still involved in strength and conditioning. But what we do clinically with chiropractic, the performance side of things, too, as it scales up, and lasers are included in that.


Dr. Andrew Wells: I find it interesting that I don’t really know anything about the world of strength training and competition. Basically, we’re talking about competitive lifting of heavy things, correct?


Dr. Jerome Rerucha: Yeah, so for me, I competed specifically in powerlifting. The thing I did the most was powerlifting. I never took Olympic lifting to the competition level, but I know enough about it to help others. Same with strongman; I mean, to this day, I probably do more strongman training than powerlifting. I guess after doing that for so long, you still do some of the core lifts. But you change things up every decade in your life as a total new chapter physiologically, whether you’re going into your prime or you’re plateauing, or you’re turning back that biological clock after a certain point. So I love it. Absolutely love it. And the uniqueness of what I would call performance chiropractic to integrate with that. I remind myself every day when I work on people, it’s like, ‘Wow, if I were the world’s greatest strength coach, here’s how I could help this person.’ But then some people, you remember how they’re stuck. And it’s a snap of a finger when you’re an advanced chiropractor identifying these things. And then you have great tools like lasers to accompany it. And you’re like, ‘Wow, what I was able to do in one or two visits with that person versus their last five years of struggling to get help.’ Constant reminding of the excitement of that. So it’s fun to share it with other people, your mission of how you’re training doctors out there and bringing this information to patients and things like that. There’s just a whole level of standard that other people are doing. But now that we live in the information age, it’s just so great to be able to get it out so much more easily.


Dr. Andrew Wells: Why is it, and correct me if I’m wrong on this, but why does it seem that weightlifting in particular seems to be sort of a pioneering and kind of an incubator for innovative things that come out in sports? It always seems like weightlifters are way ahead of the curve in terms of nutrition, they’re way ahead of the curve in terms of technology, way ahead of the curve in terms of thinking about physiology. Like, what is it? Why is it weightlifting that seems to always bring out these really cool innovations?


Dr. Jerome Rerucha: That’s a great point. And I’ve thought about that a lot. And it’s totally up to the lead, especially just in the clinical world, to move forward, but there are consequences in strength and fitness. It all comes down to competition. You’re going to embarrass yourself on the platform or on the stage, whether it’s track and field or whatever, strength and conditioning and healthy eating. It’s so important. And you can help a lot of people in your clinic, whether it’s symptomatically, and restore them to a higher quality of life. But it’s like, it’s really possible. So as we get into this, and as we define these levels of physiological success, there’s a big difference. We’re taking somebody with symptomatic limitations. And now they’re symptomatic free just to do independent activities of daily living, which that’s really important, but I would never define that as performance. So in strength and fitness, you’re taking healthy people largely, and it’s a lot harder to take a healthy person and make them excel. They’re not only healthy but especially if you take it to the levels that we’ve always been involved with, you’re pushing the boundaries of what humans are defined to do. And it’s so exciting. Strength has always raised the bar to every other industry. And then research and protocols just follow from it. But yeah, there’s always been cutting-edge people because it’s that drive to win. Like, if you do the same thing that everybody else is doing, then you only have genetics to rely on who’s going to win if everybody’s using the same principle. So it’s like, “Hey, you still want to recruit and try to find people with some natural talent.” But it’s like, when you don’t have natural talent, you’ll even in our little town, we’re in a little town in Georgia right now. And it’s probably population-wise, we’ve set the most state records, national records, and world records, just based upon per population in the last three years added. And we don’t have anybody who’s a genetic specimen, you know, we’re just regular people walking around the street. We just offer something to have them start with clinical care to come in and some of them get, it’s like, “Wow, you know, this is kind of interesting. I feel great. Now, what can I do with this now that I feel so much better that I don’t have limitations?” So we’ve had quite a few regular people leaving in their very senior years compete at a high level. So one of our members is at Worlds right now, this weekend, you lift tomorrow. So she was a chronic pain patient and never could lift until she was 68 years old. She always wanted to compete but had so much pain. And she got referred to us and told us that she always had this drug to compete, you know, in the strength sport, but she could never lift weights at all, it would just collapse or so we took over all her training and programming. And yeah, she did great. I mean, she was just untapped potential from a mental perspective. So she’s broken every state record at her age category, underneath the times, like now she owns a total of 150 state records, probably because she’s 75. But she’s so strong. She’s broken every record from age 55, to 60, 60 to 65, 65 to 70, and 70 to 75. And she’s ranked number one in the world right now. So she’s favored anything can happen. But we’re really proud of her. It’s just we give her some good ideas that, you know, keep her sharp and in tune and performance chiropractic, but we don’t take all that credit. It’s just we unleashed a monster, but the monster was always there. And sadly, nobody else did it.


Dr. Andrew Wells: Wait, hold on, did I hear that she came in as a pain patient and couldn’t do any of these things? You helped her find the right therapy to be able to do these things. And now she’s a world champion many times over.


Dr. Jerome Rerucha: Yeah, she’s won worlds twice. And she owns all the national records, all the state records, and she’s set a couple of world records, too. So yeah, she’s 75 years old. She’s under 40 pounds, and she’s deadlifted 300 pounds.


Dr. Andrew Wells: Wow, that’s incredible. 


Dr. Jerome Rerucha: Yeah, We would watch as she first came in, diagnosed with osteopenia, and in certain places, osteoporosis. You know, it’s like, yeah, that doesn’t matter. That’s just the right way, you know? We can. That’s the right way to do it..


Dr. Andrew Wells: That’s incredible. That’s such an inspirational story. I’m curious, what did her progression look like? So, what were you doing with her? And obviously, this is a laser podcast, so I’m assuming that you did some laser with her. But maybe you can talk about how you integrated those protocols, not just from a pain and recovery standpoint, but then, of course, this is all about performance. And maybe you can speak to that.


Dr. Jerome Rerucha: Yeah, so when she came in, she had a lot of experience in chiropractic. She had very positive responses. So she had life-debilitating migraines when she was like 15. I mean, just totally flattened. She’s not a dramatic person at all. And her family wasn’t, like, totally rich and wealthy, but they had enough funds that they could really seek out, not just locally, you know, who can help our child because she’s just suffering so bad. So every neurologist, every expert, every notion, lotion, and potion, you can pretty much think of, and then one day, I think she was like 19 and she’s just having a severe episode and some neighbors came over. And they’re like, ‘Well, where’s Gail at?’ They’re like, ‘Oh, she’s just having a very severe migraine again for days,’ and they’re like, ‘Well, has she ever tried chiropractic?’ And they’re like, ‘No,’ they just picked her up, put her in the car, took her to a chiropractor, and she says, ‘man, one adjustment. It was just 50% gone instantaneously, two adjustments 100% gone, never came back.’ And so she was like, ‘holy cow, this is amazing.’ So she’s always had to maintain chiropractic and they were really good chiropractors, they just don’t have a background in strength and fitness. And so she always had really severe neck and shoulder pain that could be managed well, but not in an active lifestyle like she wanted to. And so of course, everybody’s doctors included their chiropractor, like when she’d tell them she wants to lift weights, they’re like, ‘well, that’s a terrible idea. You’re not made for that, you know, you can’t get hurt, would you do it.’ And again, they’re very good at what they do. But it’s a totally different animal when you’ve done it yourself. And there’s so many benefits I’ve learned with chiropractic exams, and of course, the adjustment. But there’s a whole different level to understanding your chiropractic exam and what can be done. So truthfully, she had shoulder pads, she had a completely frozen shoulder because she was trying to lift at this time, she’s a very driven woman. She’s trying to live totally, in an epic pain pattern and can’t turn her head or shoulders completely frozen. She had like two or three nerve blocks before she came into our clinic in this cycle, it didn’t faze it a bit. And in her case, I created a whole brain-body fit for a three-dimensional exam. And, taking these principles. So even though she has migraines, it’s not just a selected exam for the upper body. So as we go through, and we body map her and brain map her pelvis was like really messed up dysfunctional. So we would just find the indicators that bothered her the most on her terms, and how dysfunctional she was. And in that case, I just put a belt on her. And her symptoms went 100% gone. And she just looked like she saw a ghost. We know the pelvis is involved. So once we kind of found out we’re a keystone now her neck needed to be adjusted, her scapula, and shoulders needed to be adjusted from other assessments. But it was a huge symptomatic, and everybody’s focusing on the area of the symptom, of course. So anyway, it was just really obvious. So it just took a few days before most of her pain was gone. And we were able to start training or specifically for powerlifting within 10 days, and never looked back.


Dr. Andrew Wells: I just think of, yeah, I think of someone in their 70s, you know, 60s, 70s, who are already clearly developing sarcopenia. And, you know, their muscles are atrophying and it’s just like, ‘Oh, well, I’m in my 60s and 70s. Now, that’s just going to happen.’ And it’s total rubbish. I mean, if you look at older people who are active, and even people who walk, not even just set aside powerlifting, but just people moving their bodies and walking, and then even adding, you know, some weight resistance training, any kind of training, like, if you compare them to their peers, it’s night and day difference. And I can tell you, I’m 42 years old, I can’t deadlift 300 pounds. And she’s like, she’s doing that at her age. Like, that gives me a lot of hope for the future for me and for everybody else. But this is just an amazing story of what the body is capable of doing if you just let it. Let it do what it does best. And that’s just, I’m pretty awestruck by that. And that actually makes me really happy to know there’s someone out there doing that. Because right next to me, as I’m recording this podcast, I have my weight wrapped around my bench and things like this, and I’m looking over. ‘Oh, Thank gosh, I have this stuff, because I want to be, I want to be able to do those things when I’m older.’ And so we’re talking about performance. Oftentimes, we think of elite-level athletes, or like college athletes and high school athletes, but there’s a whole other chapter to performance and the definition of performance as you go through these different periods in your life. And here you have a woman who’s just at 140 pounds lifting massive amounts of weight, like that’s, I think that’s a performance that most Americans could say, ‘Yeah, I want that,’ versus having a gold medal around their neck for something, you know, for some kind of sport. I think most people would trade longevity and health and function well into the later parts of their life as a performance indicator versus, you know, kind of being a champion in a certain sport.


Dr. Jerome Rerucha: Welcome back to the ‘This is Laser’ podcast. So, when we saw the breakdown of it, even though she had a lot of symptoms in the neck and shoulder area, and again, you know, as we bring people in, you don’t have to just laser just one area, but it was really apparent. So obviously, we adjusted her ‘toes to nose’. We put more attention to the pelvis because we knew that’s where her Keystone breakdown was really affecting the pain cascade. And with that, we knew there were connective tissue injuries there. It wasn’t like a big bulging disc or this and that, but obviously, on the dysfunction she had and the difference the support made of the sacral belt to properly stabilize but not correct the weaknesses down there. So again, that’s where lasers are just super helpful. She had these blown fuses; we know the ligaments are, you know, definitely sprained strain down there, causing cascades. So that’s just one of the benefits of laser therapy, is you have these things and even doing proper adjustment to get weak muscles that can turn on, but just knowing how long she had the problem, and how she just had that fire in her eyes, always, you know, so us being able to use lasers to speed up that tissue healing, and just a difference-maker. And just that ‘aha’ moment of how we can demonstrate with her even doing my atone tests are different muscle weaknesses, and how that’s contributing to an issue, take the laser make it very tangible of how these things pre and post-change in seconds, or at least, you know, a minute at most. It’s very tangible to patients, and they can really get it and get really excited behind it.


Dr. Andrew Wells: Is she currently using laser therapy to prepare for competitions?


Dr. Jerome Rerucha: So she does regular maintenance adjustments, you know, and it’s not just that she chose the sport of powerlifting; that’s just really what she gravitates toward, you know, to be clear. And not that you see a lot of seniors, I mean, it’s just that there are more and more people all the time. It’s incredible how many 50, 60, 70, 80-year-olds are competing out there, not just in powerlifting. But it’s a great community. Everybody’s hugely supportive, even people when I was competing. I mean, you’re out there to beat and humiliate everybody, what’d you do, you know, but still, you’re very cordial. Even the people that are in your weight class, even when you’re at the competition, you’re still very supportive of them. Of course, you want to win. So it’s the most important thing, you just want to do the best you can do. And if somebody is better than you on that day, or they’re just better than you, accept it, you know, so they help you push yourself. But it’s a great, great sport, there’s really not much conflict between people. Everybody wants to see everybody do better and completely rewrite the textbooks. You know, that’s really the goal. 


Dr. Andrew Wells: It’s so cool. One of the things I find fascinating about this story, and you’ve mentioned this as well, is taking people from pain-based care into performance-based care. Where do lasers fit into that transition from pain to performance? What does that look like in your clinic for your patients or for your athletes or… Yeah.


Dr. Jerome Rerucha: People do have some really significant asymmetries that were even there as little kids, but the body is amazing in how it compensates. So many times, you know, symptoms arise way after the fact that you’ve always had this problem; the body could compensate, and then it just kind of can’t anymore. So from every age and every progression of it. So, you know, with Gail, she’s pain-free, she takes really good care of herself. She doesn’t just power lift; we put a whole clinical exercise program together for her to balance the synergies and little postural muscles, not just the big muscles, and everybody has their weak links when you get to a certain age. So obviously, we’re adjusting her to do a certain amount of soft tissue. But, you know, especially as it gets closer to competition, six weeks out she’s minimum getting lasers once a week, and it’s not for symptomatic reasons. It’s for, you know, lasering the neck and shoulder area, so you don’t get hurt doing maximum effort on upper body lifts. You know, you’re lasering the low back twice a week as it gets closer to the competition. But yeah, so it’s a minimum; if she comes in minimum once a month, and that’s pretty rare. She pretty much gets adjusted. And of course, during those sessions, we’re lasering her areas, whether it’s her weak links that are symptomatic, but it’s like everybody’s got weak links, just if it’s not symptomatic. That’s not the point.”


Dr. Andrew Wells: Yeah, and that’s  accurate.


Dr. Jerome Rerucha: But yeah, the laser really helped prevent injuries in her case, and, you know, no different than anything else if you’re a soccer player. I mean, you’re predisposed to sprained ankles and shin splints, and you know, the bruising from impact injuries, whether the clunking of knees together, or all those things that it’s like, Hey, don’t wait till an injury to do proactive care. There’s a lot of chronic repetitive stress syndromes that correlate to injuries, and chiropractic, soft tissue, and lasers are phenomenal for just reverse engineering. What’s the biggest problem people commonly face, and let’s get ahead of it.


Dr. Andrew Wells: So what’s actually happening when you’re lasering? Somebody from a performance standpoint on a cellular level? What’s the mechanism of action that’s actually working there? On the patient?


Dr. Jerome Rerucha: Yes. So whether it’s symptoms, or it’s for performance levels, you know, it’s well proven through research, there’s the mitochondrial benefits, there’s increased circulation, there’s decreasing the inflammation cascade in the body. Those are some of the big ones without going into the super detail. So, especially again, when you do certain exercises, like when you deadlift, I mean, obviously, if you deadlift, heavy or even working your eyelids, but you know, for the most part, it still is going to be a very heavy, intense low back exercise, glutes, hamstrings. So to prevent injuries, it’s fantastic just post workout or just lasering those areas, and there is that ATP component, I mean, you totally used up your stores for the day. So there’s that shot of phototherapy that you’re putting in there that really does have a mitochondrial ATP benefit. And, then you still have the circulation. So yeah, the recovery is profound. And even if people aren’t sensitive enough that they can feel the laser under normal circumstances, you know, when you really work out hard, and you deplete the body, most people you can close your eyes, and you’re like, “Whoa, feels warm,” or it’s like, well, there’s no heat with cold lasers, as you know, it’s just the increased circulation. That’s that replenishment of tissues. It’s no substitute for food. But it’s a very unique advantage, whether you’re doing it for symptomatic purposes, to help people heal. Or, again, I always say, as a strength coach, your mission statement is to improve performance and prevent injury. It doesn’t matter what sport you’re doing, improve performance, prevent injuries, that ‘s like, let’s seem like a really good mantra for a chiropractor. And you’re just not ailing it with such severe methods of activity. But our minimal goal in our clinic is independence of activities of daily living and to have the balance and the physical capacity and the neurological capacity to do that. And when you have weak links, aside from their symptoms or not, we don’t let those things go. So when we body map and brain map people, we don’t threaten them and say, “Oh, you’re gonna get Parkinson’s or Oh, you’re susceptible to low back pain,” but you just look statistically. And you look at what are the biggest chronic degenerative problems in our society, and then even what are the most common acute injuries and of course, concussions are a big deal. And it’s like, well, lasers are great for all of those things.


Dr. Andrew Wells: We are in, as we’re recording this, early October and getting into postseason baseball. And every time someone sets a record in baseball, this discussion comes up about performance-enhancing drugs and what these elite athletes are using. What’s fair, what’s not fair? And I think it was you who told us that even low-level laser therapy was potentially on the chopping block for use in sports as an unfair advantage. I don’t know if you told us that or not. But do you know anything about that?


Dr. Jerome Rerucha: That was not me. I have no idea who would have said that. Again, I don’t claim to know everything. That would be odd because this is shocking to some people. Everybody thinks steroids are bad and they’re illegal, and you’re a bad person if you use them. But it’s like, you know, in the athletic world, especially the lifting world, so it’s very well known. You have drug-free federations and you have open federations, and there’s kind of a joke that in certain federations, you get drug tested just to make sure you’re taking enough. You know, I mean, if you really, maybe you could beat certain tests anyway, you know, but that’s a whole different level of understanding. Most people don’t even know how to get into that, but the premise is, I find that hard to believe. I would really have to do some research to say, okay, who’s saying that? I haven’t heard anything from USADA, and they’re one of the major programs, you know, they do the Olympic testing, and you start as far from perfect, but make no mistake, if you’re going to be tested by USADA, especially when they just do random drug testing. So, like, our Olympic lifting athletes for the US, I mean, it’s two in the morning, you get a knock on the door, you know, it’s five on the board. So you’ll get drug tested all year long. And there’s no indication that you say this thing. You can’t use low-level lasers


Dr. Andrew Wells: Alright, maybe I’m propagating.


Dr. Jerome Rerucha: It’s like, no, I’m not saying you’re wrong. You’re doing journalism and you’re just repeating, there is cutting-edge stuff out there, you go, ‘Hey, this is coming down the road.’ I haven’t heard that at all. And I find that very hard to believe that would ever be the case.


Dr. Andrew Wells: Yeah, that may be absolutely true. And I would find that really odd to try to bend light for performance enhancement. Obviously, it has a positive physiological effect on the body, and that’s measurable and researched. But yeah, that may be false. One area I know you’re really focused on, obviously, is patients and performance for weightlifting. But there’s been a huge surge in the last 10 years in the general population about working on longevity and performance. You’d call these people kind of the biohackers in the health industry. And there’s a big push not just from the provider standpoint, but from everyday people who are just looking to get better performance out of their lives. They’re business owners, and they want to produce at a higher level, or they’re moms and they have four kids, and they want to make sure that they’re present for their children and live a long time to be around for grandkids and things like that. So there’s this huge push for biohacking and for performance and longevity. Where would you say lasers fit in, if at all, in that kind of movement?


Dr. Jerome Rerucha: I think the biggest advantage lasers give us is to improve function quicker. And so lasers work point and shoot, they work better through activation. So if you have a clinician that’s even skilled in identifying movement function and symmetries and these types of things, the real advantages, you know, if you want performance and anti-aging throughout your life, it’s like, okay, is walking healthy for you? Yes. But if you went and you gotta get knee or your pelvis, or you’ve got this little back, and you can’t walk properly, and you can’t walk symmetrically and you can’t arm swing, well, the most important thing is not to go tell that person to go walk because it’s good for you. And chiropractors have the greatest advantages. Like I love physical therapists. I know a bunch of smart ones too. But it’s like, the reason I became a chiropractor for performance reasons is like you have an unfair advantage. When you can become a ninja with your hands. I mean, I really smoked the adjustment. And it’s still not just doing flying sevens, it’s like which subluxation is going to relate to this, just like Gail it was clearly her pelvis and even her pelvis on one side, that was relating to this chronic neck and shoulder problem. And, you know, it’s to do ninja quality adjustments. And so, you know, lasers, some companies might not like to be saying this, but I’m a very honest person. It’s like, Well, look, lasers are not steroids, if you bench 200 by lasering, someone, you’re probably not going to bench to 10. But to stay injury-free, and everybody’s got little things underneath the line. And when you can remove those, and you can correct them, especially if you have the talent to adjust soft tissue and lasers make everything work better, a lot better. And that’s the magic. Truly laser is that if you’re at a very, very low level, yeah, it doesn’t surprise me at all. If you’ve never lifted a weight before, it’s like, you can’t do a push -up and we laser you and we turn some things on you crank out three push-ups, it’s like well, I don’t know, three push-ups is exactly a performance measure of it. But I know it’s better and I’m happy. But, you know, that’s just an improved function, I won’t give that credit as an improved performance level, because it’s still at such a low physical capacity. 


Dr. Andrew Wells: Yeah, that makes sense. You know, what I find is that there’s a lot of truth to health and performance benefits when you’re combining lots of different things, when you have a comprehensive approach, when you’re combining adjustments with nutrition and exercise and recovery tactics and things like temperature variation, getting out in the sun, using light therapy, all these things when applied, have a synergistic effect on the body because we know the body is doing amazingly miraculous things every second we’re alive that we can’t really necessarily articulate or even measure in a quantitative way but we know when you expose your body to things that it needs and wants, it just seems to work a lot better. And for recovering from injuries or just feeling good and feeling like you’re functioning at your optimal level. I find that’s more of a pragmatic approach than this kind of miracle. What would you call it? Notions, lotions, and potions? Like yeah, we like to think that there’s something magic out there that does all those things but I like that makes a lot of sense, and I appreciate your candidness and honesty when it comes to what lasers can and can’t do. And so you’re not hearing like, and I’ve heard a lot of really miraculous stories from a lot of the doctors who have been on this program when they’re using lasers, like you see some pretty incredible things happen. But it’s often not in a vacuum. They’re also using other therapies and things that really accentuate the benefit of all the things collectively. So yeah. So what would you do if you have Docs listening to this that are interested in lasers for performance, or even just to help their patients get better outcomes? What would be the next good step? Like where would you point Doctors who are interested in learning more about lasers? Specifically, Erchonia.


Dr. Jerome Rerucha: Yeah, Erchonia has a lot of great speakers; they all have advantages. And, you know, again, as you said, Dr. Wonderlic is out here right now. And you know him well, and what he’s involved in, it’s, I wish I could be doing a podcast on you guys. Because that was big, you’re sharing your own stories about what you’re doing, it is eye-opening what your whole group is doing to the people coming on board. So maybe one day, I’ll get to take your role on this same podcast, and I’m going to interview you guys and share with the world what you guys are doing. And lasers are involved in that. But yeah, so where would they start? There’s so many right ways, you know, I’m never going to tell an upper cervical person they should practice differently, I’m never going to tell a pelvis practitioner they should practice differently. So number one, lasers fit into how you practice. And going back even to the performance things and the miracles that you’ve heard and practitioners have shared. And there’s so many great practitioners out there. And they have books of miracles of how the adjustment of soft tissue and nutrition is done for patients. And they don’t use the laser. And what is so fulfilling for me is that in the 22 years I’ve been involved with Erchonia, you see great chiropractors who are hugely successful, and they are really good at what they do. And all of us, myself included, you know, we’ve helped so many people, you could pat yourself on the shoulder and go, ‘Oh, yeah, I’m great.’ And then when the person comes in, that you can’t help, you’re like, ‘Hey, it’s 80-20, or whatever your thought process is, you know, you help 80%, 20% you know, that can’t be fixed.’ But it is phenomenal to see people are doing the right adjustments, they’re doing the right soft tissue, they’re doing the right everything. And they just bring a laser into their clinic after they practice for so long. And they start lining up, you know, the 10 patients, the 20 patients, the 30 patients that they come in for maintenance chiropractic, and it absolutely helps them, but they still have those issues. And they’re like, ‘Gail, you know, and they have some noticeable dysfunction that they cannot do and what their regular life is. And then you take the laser, you just laser the chronic subluxation, or you laser the symptom, or you laser a brain lobe that relates, you know, it’s simple, the same-side cerebellum, opposite-side cortex, even when their back pain hurts and you see that all the time. And that is so exciting that it really lets you understand the unique benefits that lasers provide physiologically, but also through cellular and neurological communication because there’s no tissue regeneration that’s happened in that short time. So you can say, ‘Oh, they just have a connective tissue injury. Oh, it’s just a disk. It’s a lifting sprain, it’s degeneration.’ But when you practice successfully for a long time without a laser, and then you implement a laser, everybody should have those patients where it’s like, ‘Geez, I just thought Mrs. Jones would have done a little bit better from the history of everything I’ve done.’ And you see people bring lasers in and then you get that cannon, just holy cow. And it’s great reinforcement for the doctors and yeah, patients are blown away by it. So that’s always exciting to hear and see those from other people.


Dr. Andrew Wells: One of the things I speak most loudly about is that you’ve done laser therapy for 22 years. Yeah, so that’s a big number. And what I found, at least in our profession as chiropractors, is that we tend to jump from gadget to gadget, technology to technology. Like, what new thing came out this year that everybody seems to be using in our profession, But you’ve been using Erchonia lasers for 22 years and still continue to use them. And here we are, continuing to talk about these things. It’s one of those things that becomes kind of an axiom. It’s somewhat self-evident that it sticks around for so long because it works and it’s valuable. It’s valuable to patients, it’s valuable to doctors. And that’s what, you know, as we interview more and more doctors and experts like Dr. Rerucha, they say the same things. Like, this is a really valuable tool that you’re using in conjunction with what you’re already doing and also kind of spans the scope of all the different variables in our profession. You have your upper cervical doctors, you have your pediatric doctors. I mean, shoot, we’ve interviewed veterinarians on the show that will tell you like, lasers are amazing for their patients, for their animal patients. And so that’s one of the really magical things about and one of the reasons we actually really enjoy doing this podcast. Not just to promote something that we think is valuable and helpful to patients and health worldwide, but just to meet really interesting people and just the scope of what you can do with laser therapy is pretty, it’s pretty unbelievable. And it’s really entertaining, actually, for us to do this because every time I do an interview, I’m kind of blown away. And this interview particularly with you, the story of Gail is just incredible. And I really appreciate you sharing that with us and tell her thank you for being a story that we can share and help inspire other people to age in a great way and to perform well into their 60s and 70s. And I’m really curious to see what Gail will look like in her 80s and from what it sounds like, she’s not stopping anytime soon.


Dr. Jerome Rerucha: Yeah, she has the intensity for competitive lifting like I had when I was in my prime, you know, trying to win nationals. So it is inspiring. She’s inspired a lot of people.


Dr. Andrew Wells: I love it. Well, Dr. Rerucha, thank you so much for being a guest on The Laser Light Show. And for your second episode. I really appreciate it and I’m sure we’ll have you on again sometime in the near future. For all of our guests, thank you so much for listening to this episode. If you have any questions about how laser therapy works, you can always visit Erchonia’s website, Erchonia.com, to get more information. And thanks for listening and we’ll see you in the next episode.


Dr. Chad Woolner: Thanks for listening to The Laser Light Show. Be sure to subscribe and give us a review. If you’re interested in learning more about our Erchonia lasers, just head on over to Erchonia.com. There you’ll find a ton of useful resources including research news and links to upcoming live events, as well as the Erchonia e-community where you can access for free additional resources including advanced training and business tools. Again, thanks for listening and we will catch you on the next episode.


About The Guest(s):

Dr. Jerome Rerucha has been a thought leader in weightlifting and sports performance who has been using low-level laser therapy in his clinic for over 2 decades! To learn more about Dr. Rerucha and his work go to: https://www.performancepractic.com/



The podcast episode #26, “Lasers for Performance Enhancement,” hosted by Dr. Andrew Wells on The Laser Light Show, features an in-depth conversation with Dr. Jerome Rerucha about the benefits of low-level laser therapy (LLLT) in chiropractic care and performance enhancement. The episode opens with Dr. Chad Woolner sharing his fascination with lasers from childhood experiences and their profound impact on his professional life as a chiropractic physician. The discussion then moves to Dr. Rerucha, who provides insights into his journey with laser therapy and its transformative effects on patients, particularly highlighting the story of a 75-year-old patient named Gail, whose life was significantly changed through chiropractic care and laser therapy, leading her to become a world champion powerlifter.


Key Takeaways:

  • Low-Level Laser Therapy (LLLT) Applications: LLLT has gained FDA clearances for its therapeutic applications, demonstrating its effectiveness in treating a wide range of health issues and enhancing performance.
  • Personal Journeys with Laser Therapy: Both Dr. Woolner and Dr. Rerucha share personal and professional experiences that showcase the profound impact of laser therapy in their lives and the lives of their patients.
  • Transformative Patient Story: Gail’s story serves as a powerful testament to the potential of chiropractic care combined with laser therapy. Starting as a pain patient with significant physical limitations, Gail became a world-champion powerlifter in her senior years, breaking numerous records and defying age-related expectations.
  • Performance Enhancement: Beyond pain relief, LLLT and chiropractic care are highlighted as tools for performance enhancement, not just for athletes but for individuals across all walks of life seeking to improve their physical capabilities and overall quality of life.
  • Laser Therapy in Chiropractic Practice: The conversation emphasizes how LLLT can be integrated into various chiropractic practices to improve patient outcomes, from pain management to performance optimization.



  • Dr. Chad Woolner: “As a chiropractic physician, I have seen firsthand just how powerful laser therapy is helping patients struggling with a wide range of health problems.”
  • Dr. Jerome Rerucha: “When I saw lasers, I just kind of had an aha moment of how it was very different from everything else that was being done.”
  • Dr. Jerome Rerucha on Gail: “She was a chronic pain patient and never could lift until she was 68 years old… and now she’s a world champion many times over.”
  • Dr. Andrew Wells: “What’s actually happening when you’re lasering somebody from a performance standpoint on a cellular level? What’s the mechanism of action that’s actually working there?”
  • Dr. Jerome Rerucha: “Lasers work point and shoot, they work better through activation… especially if you have the talent to adjust soft tissue and lasers make everything work better, a lot better.”