Mueller College of Holistic Studies

Mueller College offers a wide range of holistic health subjects such as massage therapy, hypnotherapy, herbology, reflexology, Reiki, nutrition, and Eastern and Asian modalities.

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Athletic Trainer

Overview of Athletic Training

Athletic trainers are recognized as allied health professionals. They specialize in the prevention, assessment, treatment, and rehabilitation of musculoskeletal injuries. They help prevent and treat injuries for people of all ages from professional athletes to industrial workers. They are the ones first on the scene helping injured athletes during sporting events. They must be able to recognize, evaluate, and assess injuries and provide immediate care when indicated. Athletic trainers work under the supervision of a licensed physician.

History of Athletic Training

In ancient China, the philosopher Confucius recognized that physical inactivity was associated with certain diseases. Cong Fu gymnastics was developed to encourage regular physical activity. The ancient Greek civilization held development of the body to be as important as development of the mind. The National Athletic Trainers’ Association was founded in 1950 to set professional standards and promote recognition for the profession.

Current/Future Situation as an Athletic Trainer

There are currently more than 14,000 athletic trainers in the United States. One-third work in health care. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2008-2009 Edition, employment growth is expected to be about 24% through 2016. Jobs will be concentrated in health care such as ambulatory health care and hospitals. The demand for athletic trainers should grow as the result of advances in technology, increasing emphasis on preventive care, and an increasing number of older people who are more likely to require medical care.

Career Descriptions/Places to Work as an Athletic Trainer

Many athletic trainers work indoors; others, especially those involved with sports, spend most of their time outdoors. Most work full time. Schedules vary depending on where the work is done. Those in nonsports settings usually have a set schedule of about 40 hours a week. Trainers in hospitals and clinics may spend part of their time at satellite locations. Some work in schools, colleges, and businesses.

Athletic trainers in sports jobs have variable schedules and often long hours since they must be present for team practices and games. Some teach in high schools and colleges in addition to working with the sports teams. Athletic trainers for professional sports teams generally work the most hours, sometimes 12 hours per day.

The median annual salary for athletic trainers is about $36,500; the top 10% earn more than $57,500.

Day in the Life as an Athletic Trainer

An athletic trainer who works for a college often teaches some classes during a typical day. When the sports team is ready for practice, he is on the sidelines alert for any injury that may occur to a player. If an injury does occur, he is the first to arrive at the player’s side to evaluate and treat the injury. He may also instruct the team members on the best ways to prevent injuries. When a game is scheduled, the trainer accompanies the team and is present throughout the game. He is available to render immediate aid to any player who may be injured. There is some stress involved since the athletic trainer is responsible for their players’ health and sometimes has to make quick decisions. It is a very rewarding career.

Graduate/Professional Quote

"I honestly cannot think of a more fulfilling way to use my athletic training skills than to treat national heroes or even future heroes." – Micah Allison

Stat/Fact/Tip of the Day

A bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university is required for almost all jobs as an athletic trainer. Courses include anatomy, physiology, nutrition, biomechanics, and other sciences. Most states require licensure by the Board of Certification for athletic trainers. According to the National Athletic Trainers Association, 70 percent of athletic trainers have a master’s or doctoral degree.

Good social and communication skills and the desire to help people are necessary to succeed in this profession. Organizational and time management skills are also helpful.

There are athletic trainers working for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration helping to prepare astronauts for space travel.

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2008-2009 Edition