Why I became an Athletic Trainer/Therapist

My career choice of becoming an athletic trainer/therapist came initially from my love of sport and a desire to spend my professional life around athletics.

My goal of working in elite sports was fulfilled with my MLB career. I worked with the Toronto Blue Jays during the playoffs in 1992 and 1993.

I continued the sports emphasis working with professional and elite amateur sports teams and athletes as a sport-specific orthotist An orthotist is a healthcare professional who makes and fits braces and splints (orthoses) for people who need added support for body parts that have been weakened by injury, disease, or disorders of the nerves, muscles, or bones.

Finally, I was able to take all of these experiences to Honsberger Physio+ and continuing to work with athletes and non-athletes alike.

The credentials A.T.,C and CAT(C) represent the same profession with identical scopes of practice. In addition, from a ‘sports medicine clinical’ perspective there is not much difference between an AT’s and a RPT’s scope of practice except for a few very high level manipulative techniques. 

The formal education of AT’s is sport and athlete centered, however clinically we can treat any client that would enter our clinics, with the constraints of insurance being the greatest hurdle. Having a athlete focus in school and subsequent work experience provides a good perspective to treat all clients as if they were elite athletes, with equal level of care for all.

The scope of practice of an AT (athletic trainer/athletic therapist) includes but is not limited to:

- injury prevention, pro-active care

- examination and assessment

- treatment and rehabilitation

- manual therapy

- joint and soft tissue mobilization

- myofascial release techniques

- massage techniques

- proprioceptive techniques

- modalities

- on-field care and assessment

- management of head and spinal injuries

- design/ implementation of EAPs

- bracing and taping

- ergonomics

- health and wellness

- optimize client/patient activity (athletics, work, life)

- nutrition

- supplementation

- illness prevention

- wellness protection

- immediate and emergency care

- concussion testing and evaluation

- exercise prescription

- design/ implementation of conditioning programs

- sport specific training

- work hardening

Written by: BRENT ANDREWS, BPE, ATC

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