The State of Hockey recently welcomed its newest professional sports team— the Minnesota Whitecaps of the National Women’s Hockey League—and TRIA is proud to be the team’s official medical provider. We asked our medical staff about their experience working with the Whitecaps and making history as the first all-female medical staff supporting a professional sports team.

What is it like working with the Whitecaps?

“It is thrilling to be part of the Whitecaps organization. There is enormous energy and excitement with the team, coaches, medical staff and (especially) the fans. It was wonderful to see such enthusiastic support from men and women of all ages.” – Anne Moore, MD, Head Team Physician

“Working with the Whitecaps is great. The players and coaches are a wonderful group of incredibly dedicated women, and the fans’ energy for opening weekend at TRIA Rink was contagious. I’m excited to see what the rest of the season holds.” – Caitlin Chambers, MD, Orthopedic Surgeon

What was the atmosphere at TRIA Rink during the first home stand?

“It was a great hockey weekend! The Whitecaps are a team to watch as they change the landscape for future generations of hockey players. Young boys and girls can watch these pros put on a hockey clinic every time they hit the ice. If you want to see fast skating, creative passing, defensive showdowns and great goal-tending, just go to a Whitecaps game!” – Marielle Gatenby, ATC, Team Athletic Trainer

“The Whitecaps opening weekend at TRIA Rink was what dreams are made of. The excitement from every person in the rink was palpable; it was electric. They all knew the significance. There were several moments throughout the weekend where I heard an announcement, saw a face, watched a play, and got a little choked up because I was so proud of, and so happy for, the women who made it possible. It was an honor to be a part of such a significant milestone in Minnesota hockey.” – Amy Hamilton, ATC, TRIA Sports Medicine Program Manager

What does it mean to be part of the first all-female medical staff for a professional sports team?

“It is a unique and exciting opportunity to work with high level female athletes, coaches and medical providers. Given the popularity of women’s sports, I’d expect this will become a more common arrangement for teams.” – Anne Moore, MD, Head Team Physician

“When I found out that our group was the first all-female medical staff in professional sports, I was honestly surprised because it seems like something that should have happened already. That being said, I am honored to be a part of this groundbreaking team and I hope that our group represents the tipping point of female representation in professional athletic medicine.” – Caitlin Chambers, MD, Orthopedic Surgeon

“I am honored to be a part of the medical staff for the Whitecaps. This is such an exciting time for women’s professional sports; and this team truly consists of amazing women. I love that the medical staff happens to be all women and that all these talented women worked at TRIA and were willing to dedicate their time and expertise to providing the best medical care for this team. This really speaks to the quality of care, respect, and equal opportunity of TRIA’s culture; regardless of gender, opportunity awaits if you are willing to work for it.” – Aimee Custer, PsyD, Team Neuropsychologist

Why is it important to have female medical professionals working in orthopedics and sports medicine?

“Having females in sports medicine and orthopedics is helpful in that we promote attention to ways in which women are both unique as well as similar to male athlete counterparts in terms of performance and injuries. It also allows us to serve as role models for younger women with interest in pursuing these fields professionally.” – Anne Moore, MD, Head Team Physician

“Half of all medical school graduates are female, but only 14 percent of orthopedic surgery residents and a handful of professional sports team physicians are women. I think that increasing the visibility of female physicians in professional sports can help to show the next generation of young girls that this is a realistic goal for them.” – Caitlin Chambers, MD, Orthopedic Surgeon

“Working with the NWHL and the Whitecaps, and getting to be a part of the growth of the game, it’s been priceless to see young female hockey players now have professional female hockey players they can look up to and a new level of the game they can aspire to play. Seeing women in other roles, such as being a team physician or athletic trainer, allows young females a glimpse into even more of their potential and professional options in life through the sport they love.” – Amy Hamilton, ATC, TRIA Sports Medicine Program Manager.

TRIA’s partnership with the Minnesota Whitecaps aligns with our commitment to providing expert care to active women of all ages and abilities through Women’s Sports Medicine at TRIA. For more information about our Women’s Sports Medicine program or to schedule an appointment, call 952-831-8742.