Child, Adolescent & Family Sports Providers

Sports Psychiatrist

Neevon Esmaili, MD (Medical Director)

Neevon Esmaili, MD provides medical treatment of general mental health concerns of the child and adolescent athlete using psychotherapy or psychiatric medication when indicated. 

Dr. Esmaili has a passion for providing care for child and adolescent athletes. He has been a little league coach and is involved in a youth sports mental health committee. He has experienced competitive sports on a personal level (including coming from a family line of two NFL players) and is still an active participant in sports. Dr. Esmaili understands the pressures, unique psychology and environment the athlete competes in from personal experience. He genuinely shares in the joy of his patient’s success.

His approach in these cases includes maximizing potential in competition with mindfulness, cognitive behavior therapy, supportive psychotherapy, and the use of psychiatric medication if necessary for severe disorders.

Background:

  • Two Board Certifications in Adult Psychiatry and Child & Adolescent Psychiatry.
  • Fellowship in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at Harbor-University of California Los Angeles, named Chief Fellow.
  • Trained in Adult Psychiatry at the University of Southern California, earned the resident research award and was a graduate education committee representative involved in shaping curriculum.
  • Attended Medical school at the State University of New York Downstate Health Science Center at Brooklyn.
  • Attended the University of California, Berkeley, graduating with a major in neurobiology as well as a minor in theatre and performance studies.

Scholarly Activities:

  • Adjunct Clinical Assistant Professor of Psychiatry & the Behavioral Sciences (Voluntary) at the Keck School of Medicine of University of Southern California*
  • Co-Author of a literature review paper published in a peer reviewed journal on ketamine abuse and diversion. (Read Journal Article Here)
  • Published a case report on the management of a patient with a brain tumor and mental illness in the American Journal of Psychiatry Residents Journal. (Read Report Here)
  • Presented research findings on medical disorders in adult psychiatric outpatients at the American Psychosomatic Society annual meeting on a travel scholarship.

Professional Memberships:

  • American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry
  • American Psychiatric Association
  • American Medical Association

ISSP

Experience:

  • Practicing as a medically licensed physician since 2011.
  • Practicing as a Board Certified Adult Psychiatrist since 2013.
  • Practicing as a Board Certified Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist since 2014.

*Mental Fitness Clinic is not affiliated with the Keck School of Medicine of University of Southern California

Sports Psychotherapist

Neevon Esmaili, M.D. (Medical Director)

Neevon Esmaili, M.D. provides psychotherapeutic treatment of general mental health concerns and performance enhancement psychotherapy for the adolescent athlete.

Dr. Esmaili has a passion for providing psychotherapeutic care for adolescent athletes. He has been a little league coach, and is involved in a youth sports mental health committee. He has experienced competitive sports on a personal level (including coming from a family line of two NFL players) and is still an active participant in sports. Dr. Esmaili understands the pressures, unique psychology and environment the athlete competes in from personal experience. He genuinely shares in the joy of his patient’s success.

His approach in these cases includes maximizing potential in competition with mindfulness, cognitive behavior therapy, and supportive psychotherapy.

Background:

  • Two Board Certifications in Adult Psychiatry and Child & Adolescent Psychiatry.
  • Fellowship in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at Harbor-University of California Los Angeles, named Chief Fellow.
  • Trained in Adult Psychiatry at the University of Southern California, earned the resident research award and was a graduate education committee representative involved in shaping curriculum.
  • Attended Medical school at the State University of New York Downstate Health Science Center at Brooklyn.
  • Attended the University of California, Berkeley, graduating with a major in neurobiology as well as a minor in theatre and performance studies.

Scholarly Activities:

  • Adjunct Clinical Assistant Professor of Psychiatry & the Behavioral Sciences (Voluntary) at the Keck School of Medicine of University of Southern California*
  • Co-Author of a literature review paper published in a peer reviewed journal on ketamine abuse and diversion. (Read Journal Article Here)
  • Published a case report on the management of a patient with a brain tumor and mental illness in the American Journal of Psychiatry Residents Journal. (Read Report Here)
  • Presented research findings on medical disorders in adult psychiatric outpatients at the American Psychosomatic Society annual meeting on a travel scholarship.

Professional Memberships:

  • American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry
  • American Psychiatric Association
  • American Medical Association

ISSP

Experience:

  • Practicing as a medically licensed physician since 2011.
  • Practicing as a Board Certified Adult Psychiatrist since 2013.
  • Practicing as a Board Certified Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist since 2014.

*Mental Fitness Clinic is not affiliated with the Keck School of Medicine of University of Southern California

Dr. Esmaili can also treat general mental health concerns of the child and adolescent athlete with psychiatric medication when indicated.

Sports Psychotherapist

Polster HeadshotDouglas R. Polster, PhD (Adolescent Psychotherapist)

*Adolescent patients 13-14 and over only

Dr. Polster is a licensed clinical psychologist with specializations in neuropsychology and sports psychology.

Dr. Polster provides sports psychology services to athletes in a number of areas including injury recovery, stress management, and anxiety/depression, as well as performance enhancement. He has successfully worked with professional, Division-I, and high school athletes. Dr. Polster works with athletes to identify what drives them to succeed and assists them in leveraging their innate abilities to ensure the best results.

Dr. Polster grew up in a sports environment and played varsity basketball at Johns Hopkins University, serving as a captain his senior year. In his free time, Dr. Polster serves as a director of an LA-based social and fitness group and enjoys golfing and surfing.

Education:

  • Fellowship trained in Sports Neuropsychology at the UCLA Steve Tisch BrainSPORT Program and UCLA Medical Psychological Assessment Center
  • Internship at Broward Health Medical Center, Fort Lauderdale, FL, focusing on the intersection of medical conditions and psychiatric disorders
  • Doctor Of Philosophy (PhD) in Clinical Psychology from Nova Southeastern University
  • Bachelors of Arts from Johns Hopkins University in Psychology and Spanish

Scholarly Activities:

  • Multiple research presentations at national conferences including the University of California Neurotrauma Conference and the American Academy of Neurology Sports Concussion Conference
  • JAMA Pediatrics editorial on pediatric health-related functioning after concussion
  • Member of the UCLA Steve Tisch BrainSPORT research team

Training and Certifications:

  • Licensed by the state of California to practice psychology (PSY 29235)
  • ImPACT (Immediate Post-Concussion Assessment and Cognitive Test) certified

Sports Neuropsychologists

Polster HeadshotDouglas R. Polster, PhD

*Adolescent patients 10 and over only

Dr. Polster is a licensed clinical psychologist with specializations in neuropsychology and sports psychology. He provides expert neurocognitive evaluations designed to assess strengths and weaknesses in order to help individuals better understand how to leverage their strengths as well cope with any weaknesses. He offers baseline and post-injury concussion evaluation, psychoeducational testing, and ADHD and learning disability evaluations, as well as testing for memory related difficulties. Each evaluation is tailored to the individual to provide the most accurate results and contains personalized recommendations.

Dr. Polster grew up in a sports environment and played varsity basketball at Johns Hopkins University, serving as a captain his senior year. In his free time, Dr. Polster serves as a director of an LA-based social and fitness group and enjoys golfing and surfing.

Education:

  • Fellowship trained in Sports Neuropsychology at the UCLA Steve Tisch BrainSPORT Program and UCLA Medical Psychological Assessment Center
  • Internship at Broward Health Medical Center, Fort Lauderdale, FL, focusing on the intersection of medical conditions and psychiatric disorders
  • Doctor Of Philosophy (PhD) in Clinical Psychology from Nova Southeastern University
  • Bachelors of Arts from Johns Hopkins University in Psychology and Spanish

Scholarly Activities:

  • Multiple research presentations at national conferences including the University of California Neurotrauma Conference and the American Academy of Neurology Sports Concussion Conference
  • JAMA Pediatrics editorial on pediatric health-related functioning after concussion
  • Member of the UCLA Steve Tisch BrainSPORT research team

Training and Certifications:

  • Licensed by the state of California to practice psychology (PSY 29235)
  • ImPACT (Immediate Post-Concussion Assessment and Cognitive Test) certified

Client Testimonial