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Faculty Spotlight: Dr. Terry Grindstaff

May 19, 2021
5 min Read
Terry Grindstaff in gym setting

When Terry Grindstaff, PT, associate professor at the School of Pharmacy and Health Professions, started his research in physical therapy, he began a life-long journey of high-level scholarship and care. 

Grindstaff has been with Creighton since 2010, and for the past several years, has conducted research in athletic joint injuries with a particular interest in the neuro-muscular consequences of knee injury. 

2021 has already proven a productive year for Grindstaff: He has recently collaborated on several articles published in theJournal of Athletic Training, the International Journal of Sports Physical Therapy, and the Journal of Orthopaedic Research.

In April, Grindstaff and Kelley Hammond, PhD, were awarded the Dr. George F. Haddix President’s Faculty Research Grant, a $15,000 grant for the support and enhancement of research and scholarly productivity of full-time faculty, for their study of molecular biomarkers of myogenesis in individuals with a history of anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) reconstruction.

“We’ve been looking at why the muscle breaks down after injury,” says Grindstaff. “Our goal is to better determine the interplay between the molecular components and the neuro-muscular components that lead to muscle weakness after injury. These findings will better help inform rehabilitation pathways to enhance injury recovery efforts.”

In addition to his scholarly pursuits, Grindstaff has volunteered with USA Wrestling for the past 12 years, providing care to some of America’s top wrestlers. This October, Grindstaff will join the medical team at the World Championships in Oslo, Norway.

“Throughout the year, I help provide care at domestic events and usually travel at least once to an international tournament,” says Grindstaff. “It’s rewarding work, but my ultimate goal is to provide care at the Olympics.”

Grindstaff’s major scholarly goal is to secure an extremely competitive National Institutes of Health grant that would give him and his fellow researchers the ability to bring in more student work and maximize the scope of their research. 

“Over the next year, we hope to gather the preliminary data to be competitive with these types of grants, and to present and publish the findings from these studies,” says Grindstaff.

COVID-19 has presented challenges for Grindstaff’s team, but he notes the tremendous base of research and scholarship they have managed to build upon.

“Support from Creighton has been great. We are doing some rebuilding, but the overall goal hasn’t changed,” says Grindstaff.

With the hard work of him and his team, Grindstaff has built momentum in both his clinical interests and his academic endeavors this year. As summer begins, he’s optimistic for his work in the future.

“We have very motivated students, and a reasonable foundation,” he says.

Over the next 18 months, Grindstaff plans to keep pushing towards his clinical and academic goals, collecting data, and working at building more connections with USA Wrestling. 

“I’m fortunate,” says Grindstaff. “The key pieces are together, and we have great people.”