Who We Are
Athletic trainers (AT) are 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.
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. 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. Even though ATs provide health care to many types of patients, the profession continues to embrace its proud culture and history by retaining the title. In other countries, athletic therapist and physiotherapist are similar titles.