Waltham News Tribune
February 2016

Walden Behavioral Care, one of the country’s leading hospitals for treating eating disorders, announced the launch of Goals, which is believed to be the first program in Massachusetts dedicated to treating athletes with eating disorders.

Goals, an intensive outpatient program (IOP) for high school, collegiate and adult athletes, will offer programs on three evenings per week beginning in February at Walden’s Waltham clinic, Suite 2000, 69 Hickory Dr.

“Studies show that athletes are two to three times more likely than the average person to have an eating disorder,” according to Emily Slager, program director of the Waltham clinic. “Having an eating disorder can not only hamper performance and make athletes more susceptible to injuries, it can also cause serious physical damage and even threaten the athlete’s life.”

Walden has been treating athletes since its founding 13 years ago, President and CEO Stuart Koman said, but the Waltham program will be the first designed to meet the specific needs of athletes, helping them to be healthy and in peak form for competing.

Both individual and group sessions will focus on sports nutrition, body image, performance and identity issues, and stress management in the context of the athlete’s lifestyle, Slager said. Walden will also offer cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) to help athletes develop the skills they need to overcome eating disorders.