What is Athletic Therapy & What to Expect at Your Athletic Therapy Appointment?
A Certified Athletic Therapist is a health care practitioner skilled in the prevention, identification, intervention, management and rehabilitation of acute and chronic musculoskeletal conditions and injuries (muscle, bones & joints).
In other words, athletic therapy involves the assessment of orthopaedic conditions alongside the treatment of physical dysfunctions caused by pain and/or injury through the usage of various manual therapies, modalities, exercise prescriptions, prophylactic support/taping in order to help clients return to their daily activities or playing their sport.
Athletic therapy is used to treat a wide range of patients, which can include but are not limited to: active individuals with a musculoskeletal injury, injured workers, motor vehicle accident injuries, as well as recreational, professional, competitive and amateur athletes.
Athletic Therapy seeks to help optimize the ability of professional and amateur athletes in performing their best through sport specific training, injury prevention techniques, and various injury sustaining treatments and rehabilitations for rapid return to work or play.
What to expect at your Athletic Therapy appointments
The Athletic Therapist will provide a diagnosis by interpreting the mechanism of injury and determining signs, symptoms and predisposing factors of an injury or condition. To do so, the therapist will perform appropriate specific physical, orthopaedic and/or fitness testing related to the condition. An assessment could also be of sport related traumatic brain injuries or concussions. The Athletic Therapist will determine the biomechanical impact of injury to promote return to play/return to work.
*Manual therapy if time allows + Home Exercise Program given*
At the follow-up appointment, the Athletic Therapist will perform a quick re-assessment of the status of the injury or condition to determine appropriate treatment, rehabilitation and/or fitness/strengthening/reconditioning plans. Afterwards, they will apply rehabilitative therapies (manual therapies, modalities, exercises, stretching, prophylactic support) to prevent dysfunction. In other words, they will set goals and provide guidance in treatment to facilitate recovery, function and/or performance. They will also educate the patient on risks and corrective actions associated with participation in fitness and sport programs, as well as aid physical conditioning by designing and implementing programs to prevent dysfunction in sport, active lifestyle and workplace settings.