Gary Vitti

Gary Vitti

Head Athletic Trainer

Los Angeles Lakers

Los Angeles, CA USA

If you don't have a passion, find one. The world is one big puzzle, and you've gotta find where you fit into it.


By Roadtrip Nation

Gary Vitti


My road in life took a while to figure out.
He originally chose to get his bachelor's degree in meteorology, because he'd heard it was an occupation with a "big upside."
After three years, he realized he had no passion for meteorology; one of his friends recommended that he go into sports medicine.
The athletic training program at the University of Utah was already full, but the head trainer agreed to let Gary audit his classes.
The head trainer quickly realized that Gary was more dedicated to the program than any of his students and got him into the sports medicine program.
By a stroke of luck, the New Orleans Jazz relocated to Salt Lake City; Gary started working for them part-time while finishing his master's degree.
All the while, he was making contacts within the industry, so in 1984, when the Lakers' head training job opened up, his name was at the top of the list.
Says that by working hard, always following his heart, and never settling, he positioned himself to take fortuitous opportunities.
Believes that the key to pursuing your passion is always keeping a short-term goal, a mid-term goal, and a long-term goal.
Keep following my journey


Head Athletic Trainer

I train the Lakers throughout the season using state-of-the-art methods in conditioning, dieting, and testing.

Career Roadmap

My work combines:
My work combines:
Working with Others

Day to Day

I'm responsible for the care, prevention and treatment of injuries to Lakers players, assuring the coaching staff that each athlete is in the best possible condition throughout the year. I conduct an initial assessment of an athlete's injury or illness in order to provide emergency or continued care and collaborate with physicians to implement rehab programs. I also develop training programs to keep the athletes in the best shape possible. Traveling is frequent.

Advice for Getting Started

Here's the first step for high school students

Network and make connections that matter. Find the people that have made it and that have come from a similar situation as you and use their advice, insight, and experience to help yourself succeed. Volunteer in your free time and put yourself out there.

Recommended Education

My career is related to what I studied. I'd recommend the path I took:


The Noise I Shed

From Myself:

"Once I get to a particular point in my life, then I'll be happy. "

Challenges I Overcame

First-Generation Immigrant

Interviewed By

Ready to Rise

Ready to Rise

Confronting systemic barriers to success