What is an Athletic Trainer

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The title of “athletic trainer” and the National Athletic Trainers’ Association

 The statutory title of “athletic trainer” is a misnomer. Athletic trainers provide medical services to all types of people - not just athletes participating in sports - and do not train people as personal or fitness trainers do. However, the profession continues to embrace its proud culture and history by retaining the title. In other countries, athletic therapist and physiotherapist are similar titles. The AT profession was founded on providing medical services to athletes. NATA represents more than 34,000 members in the U.S. and internationally, and there are about 40,000 ATs practicing nationally. NATA represents students in 325 accredited collegiate academic programs. The athletic training profession began early in the 20th century, and the National Athletic Trainers’ Association was established in 1950.

 Athletic training is practiced by athletic trainers (AT), health care professionals who collaborate with physicians to optimize activity and participation of patients and clients across age and care continuums. Athletic training encompasses the prevention, diagnosis, and intervention of emergency, acute and chronic medical conditions involving impairment, functional limitations, and disabilities. ATs work under the direction of physicians, as prescribed by state licensure statutes.
Athletic trainers are well-known, recognized, qualified health care professionals

State regulation of athletic trainers
Athletic trainers licensed or otherwise regulated in 47 states; efforts continue to add licensure in Alaska, California and Hawaii. NATA has ongoing efforts to update obsolete state practice acts that do not reflect current qualifications and practice of ATs under health care reform.

Athletic trainers practice under the direction of physicians.

ATs work under different job titles (wellness manager, physician extender, rehab specialist, etc.).

Athletic trainers licensed or otherwise regulated in 47 states; efforts continue to add licensure in Alaska, California and Hawaii. NATA has ongoing efforts to update obsolete state practice acts that do not reflect current qualifications and practice of ATs under health care reform.Athletic trainers practice under the direction of physicians. ATs work under different job titles (wellness manager, physician extender, rehab specialist, etc.).

ATs relieve widespread and future workforce shortages in primary care support and outpatient rehab professions.

 Academic curriculum and clinical training follows the medical model. Athletic trainers must graduate from an accredited baccalaureate or master’s program; 70 percent of ATs have a master’s degree.

46 states require ATs to hold the Board of Certification credential of “Athletic Trainer, Certified” (ATC).

ATs improve patient functional and physical outcomes

 

Physicians, hospitals, clinics and other employers demand ATs for their versatile wellness services, and injury and illness prevention skills.

Employers demand ATs for their knowledge and skills in manual therapy and similar treatments for musculoskeletal conditions, including back pain.

ATs commonly supervise and motivate obese clients and patients to safely improve their health and fitness.

ATs commonly work with patients with asthma, diabetes, heart disease and other health conditions.

ATs specialize in patient education to prevent injury and re-injury, which reduces rehabilitative and other health care costs

 

In a patient-centered team, adding ATs to the team does not cost the health care system money. Studies demonstrate that the services of ATs save money for employers and improve quality of life for patients.

 

Profile of Athletic Trainers National Athletic Trainers’ Association

National Athletic Trainers’ Association 2952 Stemmons Frwy., Suite 200

info@nata.org Dallas, Texas 75247

V 214.637.6282 • F 214.637.2206 www.NATA.org