Dr. Mark J. Smith graduated from Loughborough University of Technology, England, with a Bachelor of Science in PE & Sports Science and then obtained his teaching certificate in PE & Mathematics. As a top-level rugby player, he then moved to the United States and played for the Boston Rugby Club while searching the American college system for an opportunity to commence his Master’s degree. That search led him to Colorado State University where Dr. Smith completed his Masters degree in Exercise and Sport Science, with a specialization in Exercise Physiology. He continued his studies in the Department of Physiology, where he obtained his Doctorate. His research focused on the prevention of atherosclerosis (the build up of plaque in arteries that leads to cardiovascular disease); in particular, using low-dose aspirin and antioxidant supplementation.
Following his Doctorate, and as an affiliate faculty member in the Department of Exercise and Sport Science at Colorado State University, Dr. Smith worked extensively with Dr. Loren Cordain, the world’s leading expert on Paleolithic diets and founder of the Paleo movement. As a result of this collaboration, Dr. Smith gained significant experience in helping autoimmune patients improve their condition using a Paleolithic dietary template; as well as, helping individuals lose weight, reverse conditions associated with metabolic syndrome, and improve athletic performance. Dr. Smith has also lectured extensively on the benefits of adopting this dietary approach.
At this same time, Dr. Smith began researching and developing innovative high-intensity, short-duration, training protocols that have since become recognized as some of the most effective conditioning methods available. He is recognized as a leading authority on the health and conditioning benefits of this type of training and, as a result of his extensive lecturing on this subject, his recommended programs are now implemented at thousands of health and conditioning centers around the world.
Dr. Smith’s main interest today is the prevention of disease and the optimization of one’s health by lifestyle modification. Consequently, he emphasizes education as a means to bridge what he feels is a large gap between specific health-related research and the general public’s awareness of this research. While lecturing on the topic of high-intensity interval training, Dr. Smith met Dr. Oscar Coetzee and began a collaborative relationship combining each other’s knowledge to create a diet and exercise protocol that is unrivaled in reversing conditions associated with metabolic syndrome. Dr. Smith has maintained his own practice at The Spa & Sports Center at Mission Hills Country Club in Rancho Mirage, California since 2006. For the first four years of this position, Dr. Smith worked along side 11-year PGA Tour Physical Therapist, Rob Mottram. It was Rob that introduced Dr. Smith to the Titleist Performance Institute (TPI) and together they recorded Episode 8 of the Golf Channel’s Golf Fitness Academy Season 2 with TPI’s founders Dr. Greg Rose and Dave Phillips. Dr. Smith is now an Advisory Board Member for TPI and also lectures for their certification seminars. Dr. Smith is also an advisory board member for the Discovery Performance Center, the health and fitness division of Discovery Land Company, one the world’s most prestigious developers of luxury residential private club communities and resorts.
As well as playing first-grade rugby in the UK, Dr. Smith played for both the Denver Barbarians and the Boston Rugby Club in the U.S. Rugby Super League. He was a member of the American Eagle 50 player pool and captained the Denver Barbarians to a National Championship in 1990. He further captained the Western United States Territory. He is also an accomplished calligrapher, skier, and tennis player and wishes he started playing golf at a younger age! Dr. Smith resides in Rancho Mirage, CA with his wife Valerie, and his rescue puppy, Jackson.