CEO & Founder
Dr. Chris Garcia holds the distinction as San Diego’s first and only residency trained sports clinical specialist in physical therapy. He has extensive experience in treating athletes of all levels and sports, including working with Olympic, professional and recreational athletes. For three years, Chris served as a physical therapist at the United States Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista, where he treated the nation’s best athletes. Additionally, he has been an integral member of sports performance teams during the NFL Combine Training program. He further enhanced his treatment methodology with a 4-month clinical internship with world-renowned physical therapist, Dr. Shirley Sahrmann, PT, PhD, FAPTA. Chris excels at relieving pain and improving performance of athletes by blending manual therapy with movement analysis to quickly identify and correct inefficient movement patterns. He has a special interest in managing low back pain, hip pain and knee ACL injury prevention. He has developed a unique screening assessment and approach to identify athletes at risk for injury. Having traveled around the world managing the care of the nation’s best athletes, Chris brings this vast experience and knowledge to help you train longer, harder and pain free.
A San Diego native, Dr. Garcia received his Bachelor’s degree from San Diego State University in Kinesiology and was honored as the Outstanding Graduate of the Year in a graduating class of 10,000 students. He earned his Doctor of Physical Therapy degree from Washington University in St. Louis, ranked at the top 1% of the nation’s physical therapy programs. Chris went on to complete a 15-month intensive sports physical therapy residency from The Ohio State University Sports Medicine Center. Chris is a board certified Sports Clinical Specialist through the American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties, Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist through the National Strength and Conditioning Association, and Advanced Sports Performance Coach through USA Weightlifting. Chris has presented at local, state and national conferences on sports medicine, including core stability, hip pain, sports performance, and bridging the gap between rehabilitation and return to sport. He also serves as adjunct faculty in the Doctor of Physical Therapy program at San Diego State University.
- Licensed Physical Therapist, PT
- Doctor of Physical Therapy, DPT
- Board Certified Sports Clinical Specialist, SCS
- Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist, CSCS
- USA Weightlifting Sports Performance Coach Level 1 and 2, USAW
- Selective Functional Movement Assessment Level 1 and 2, SFMA
- Functional Movement Screen Level 1 and 2, FMS
- Graston Technique Accredited Technician
- Sports Taping Specialist
- Posture Specialist
- Movement Expert
- 4-month Movement System Impairment Clinical Internship with World Renowned, Dr. Shirley Sahrmann, PT, PhD, FAPTA
Chris served on various medical teams to provide care for Olympic, Paralympic and professional athletes nationally and internationally.
- ATP World Tennis Tour: Rogers Cup – Montreal, Canada
- IPC Athletics Grand Prix Final – London, England
- EXOS / Athletes’ Performance NFL Combine Prep Program
- ATP World Tennis Tour: Wimbledon – London, England
- ATP World Tennis Tour: Roland Garros French Open – Paris, France
- UCI BMX Supercross World Cup – Chula Vista, CA
- IPC Athletics World Championships – Lyon, France
- Paralympic Games – USA Track and Field, London, England
- USA BMX Olympic Trials – Chula Vista, CA
- USA Rowing National Regatta Olympic Trials – Chula Vista, CA
- USA BMX National Championships – Chula Vista, CA
- USA Sevens Rugby Tournament – Las Vegas, NV
- HSBC Seven Ruby World Series- Wellington, New Zealand
- ParaPan American Games – Guadalajara, Mexico
- USA Track and Field Torpe Cup – Chula Vista, CA
- USA Archery SoCal Showdown – Chula Vista, CA
DR. STEPHANIE GARCIA
The Real CEO
– Doctor of Physical Therapy
– Certified Athletic Trainer
– Certified Strength And
– Sports Performance Coach
Dr. Stephanie Garcia is co-owner of Sports Performance and is one of our most experienced physical therapists. Originally from Ohio, she graduated with her Bachlor’s Degree from Ohio University with a double major in Athletic Training and Exercise Physiology in 2006, as well as competed as a Division 1 athlete on the Ohio Bobcat’s Track & Field Team, running the 800m. Her personal best was 2:17.
Stephanie graduated with her Doctorate in Physical Therapy in 2009 from Ohio University. She met Dr. Chris Garcia while working at The Ohio State University Sports Medicine, and moved to San Diego in 2011. As a Certified Athletic Trainer and a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist since 2006, she has experience treating a wide variety of injuries and athletes, specializing in a manual therapy approach.
Stephanie enjoys an active lifestyle, including CrossFit, yoga, running, and traveling.
DR. MELANIE HOAD
Sports Physical Therapist
– Doctor Of Physical Therapy
– Movement Specialist
Dr. Melanie is originally from Michigan but moved to Pensacola, Florida to pursue a competitive junior tennis career, regionally and nationally at the age of 8. Melanie’s passion for physical therapy began through her own experiences from injuries while playing tennis & surfing. Tennis was a big part of her life and when injuries stood in the way of competition, she turned to physical therapy to regain function & optimize her performance.
Melanie earned a B.S. degree in Health Sciences from Florida Gulf Coast University in 3 years and began Physical Therapy school that same month at The University of South Alabama, where she graduated with her Doctorate of Physical Therapy. Dr. Melanie recently moved to San Diego, CA with her husband who is a helicopter pilot in the United States Navy. In her free time, she enjoys golfing, playing tennis, hiking, traveling & discovering new restaurants around San Diego. Dr. Melanie is very passionate to provide clients one-on-one care, helping them achieve an active and healthy lifestyle.
DR. JASON UMALI
Sports Physical Therapist
– Doctor Of Physical Therapy
– Certified Clinical Athlete Weightlifting Coach
– Movement Specialist
Dr. Jason is originally from the beautiful Pacific Northwest where he graduated with his Bachelor’s in Kinesiology from Washington State University (Go Cougs!). Jason now calls San Diego home after receiving his Doctorate of Physical Therapy with high honors from the University of St. Augustine. Jason made it an emphasis to gain experience in a variety of settings from an inpatient level 5 trauma center for spinal rehabilitation, vestibular rehab, aquatic therapy, post-operative orthopedics, and sports rehabilitation and performance for athletes at all levels. Dr. Jason found his true passion with Orthopedics and Sports Performance and enjoys treating fitness athletes. He is a Certified Clinical Athlete Weightlifting coach using a combination of manual therapy techniques and strength and conditioning principles in his practice.
During school, Jason volunteered his time working with Rock Steady boxing classes for Parkinson disease clients and the Senior CA Olympic Games athletes which truly showed there is no limit for anyone to perform at a high level no matter age or skill level. Jason considers anyone an athlete that wants to pursue an active lifestyle so it’s his mission to keep you healthy to keep you doing what you love throughout your lifespan.
Jason places a big emphasis on personal growth and continual learning which he shares with his clients to empower them to make positive decisions for their well-being. Jason spends time keeping up to date with scientific literature both in the Physical Therapy and Strength & Conditioning realm along with continuing education courses such as Spinal Thrust Manipulation, Corrective exercise, and Olympic Weightlifting assessment courses with much more planned in the near future to provide the best service to his clients.
Outside of Sports Performance, you can find Jason exploring sunny San Diego at breweries, coffee shops, or out hiking with his girlfriend, Robin, and their dog, Porter. Jason competes in Olympic Weightlifting at a national level in the 67kg/73kg weightclass with plans to also compete in Powerlifting. He also enjoys cooking, reading, skateboarding, and he is always open to new hobbies to challenge himself.
Sports Massage Therapist
Alicia Lamb is a massage therapist who specializes in sports recovery. One of only a handful of massage therapists working with athletes every day, currently, Alicia is the senior therapist at the US Olympic Training Center here in Chula Vista, and has been for the past 7 years. She has worked exclusively with America’s greatest Olympic athletes both winter and summer, and has the distinction of having served in the last two Olympic Games, London in 2012 and most recently Rio in 2016. Alicia brings experience and passion to her work and is privileged to be the therapist of choice for the Olympic Rowing team and Team USA’s Track and Field athletes. Her expertise has taken her all over the world to assist these elite level athletes in achieving their goals. ACE instructor certified for almost 15 years, Alicia teaches Kickboxing classes at the YMCA, allowing her to understand movement, exercise and body mechanics from more than just a therapist’s angle. She enjoys skiing, golfing, yoga, and beekeeping in her spare time.
Alicia holds an Associate of Science degree in Massage Therapy, rare for massage therapists, from the State University of New York system. Having graduated at the top of her class, she is Nationally Board Certified and holds a Holistic Health Care Practitioner’s license in California and a Massage Therapy License in New York. Alicia has training in myofascial release, trigger point therapy, neuromuscular facilitation, myofascial decompression (cupping) and Reiki energy work. More than just a wealth of knowledge, Alicia brings intuition and caring to her healing practice, believing that a healthy body is the extension of a healthy mind both requiring loving attention.
Sports Massage Therapist
Sherry has been practicing massage for nearly two decades. Professionally, she has worked as a massage therapist for the San Diego Chargers, the NFL Combine and with musicians backstage at concerts. Sherry was a member of the medical staff at the Olympic Training Center for six years and was invited to be on the medical staff for the 2016 Olympic games in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil. Before she was a massage therapist she used to be a chef and photographer. She also used to run 15 health clubs at Bally’s Holiday Spa.
She loves what she does for clients. She loves facilitating and helping people become a better them. In her free time, she enjoys riding horses twice a week.
– Certified Personal Trainer
Alex Hart was raised in Greenwood, Indiana where he developed a passion for sports and fitness. He started playing soccer at a young age and played a variety of other sports including basketball, baseball, football, swimming, and ultimate frisbee but developed a special passion for weightlifting that he would carry into his adult life and eventually teach others.
Alex joined the Navy in 2013 upon graduating high school and Attended Navy Dive School where he was tested to his mental and physical limits before beginning a career as a deep-sea diver. He spent his 6 years of service stationed in San Diego, CA diving on Navy vessels and performing underwater repairs but his true passion was above the surface training and coaching others. As a Company Fitness Leader for his unit, Alex developed fitness programs for his team to stay in excellent shape and provided personal training to those who wanted to go the extra mile to meet their goals.
After being Honorably discharged in 2019, Alex earned His Personal Trainer Certification from the National Academy of Sports Medicine and enrolled in National University where he is currently pursuing a degree in Human Biology in preparation for Physical Therapy school.
Cecilia, a super fun individual who is passionate about leading a healthy and active lifestyle. An artist at heart, she met her husband in art school and somehow found herself living in the beautiful state of Pennsylvania, where she ran her own wedding and portrait photography business. She is a mother to a beautiful, smart and vibrant son who has Asperger’s, an Autism Spectrum Disorder, and due to his nature, she found herself having to put her photography work on hold. Cecilia also has many years of working in the medical administration field. She is continuously seeking new skills to explore and learn.
Born in Salinas, California and raised here in San Diego, Cecilia moved to the east coast and lived in Philadelphia for over 10 years (GO EAGLES!) only to come back to the west coast to live in beautiful Imperial Beach in southern San Diego. Having graduated from the Antonelli Institute of Art and Photography, Cecilia is a professional photographer whose work has been displayed at Pennsylvania’s State Capital in Harrisburg. In 2017 she competed in the 2017 NAS Strongman National Championships!
CLIENT CARE SPECIALIST
Cristianah is the youngest team member on Team SP! Cristianah loves going to the gym and making those gains! In her free time, Cristianah enjoys getting homework done, studying at local coffee shops, and spending time with her family. She’s studying international business and financing in college. Cristianah one day hopes to work on Wall Street. She loves spending time with her little brother, the two are inseparable.
CLIENT CARE SPECIALIST
Carly was born and raised in the Bay Area playing several sports but primarily focused on basketball and swimming. Standing at 6’1”, Carly is the shortest in her family with her brother standing at 6’7”, mom at 6’2” and dad at 6’4”. She is always up for a good road trip, whether it is a two-hour drive or a nine-hour drive, traveling and seeing new things will always have a soft spot in her heart. She enjoys playing and watching all sports, but her favorite team of all time will forever be the San Francisco Giants.