What do you think of when you hear the job title “athletic trainer?” You may think of someone who runs onto the field when an athlete is injured in a sporting event. At OhioHealth, an athletic trainer does more than sports injury rehabilitation. Amy A. Harrison, MS, AT, CSCS, CES, PES, FMS, is an athletic trainer. She also runs OhioHealth’s athletic performance clinics. According to Amy, “We take care of the whole athlete. It’s not just the injury when it happens or the recovery afterward.”
What is the role of an athletic trainer?
At OhioHealth, an athletic trainer can help you when you want to:
- Avoid an injury
- Heal from an injury
- Improve your performance
- Become more active
You do not need to participate in an organized sport or run marathons to see an OhioHealth athletic trainer. If you are active and want to stay healthy, athletic training services can help.
Of course, the best thing you can do is not get injured in the first place. An injury reduction clinic can analyze how you move and identify where you are showing poor form. Many times you exhibit poor movement because of past injuries or weaknesses. When the cause is uncovered, an athletic trainer can help you with strength training to correct your form and reduce your risk of injury.
The team uses functional movement screenings, a series of standardized tests for specific movements, like squats or lunges. Each test will highlight weaknesses, imbalances and limitations in your body which can lead to injury. The team also uses video analysis software to pinpoint risky movements and suggest improvements. For example, Amy will videotape a runner while running on a treadmill and compare that video to their screenings. This analysis will uncover why the runner is performing specific risky movements that could lead to injury. With that information, Amy will suggest how the runner can run more efficiently and safely.
This technology can be a game changer for active individuals who want to stay healthy. If you experience ongoing soreness or pain when active, don’t let it get worse. Athletic training services help you pinpoint the cause of your pain and build strength to avoid serious injury.
Heal from an injury
You can continue healing from an injury after physical therapy ends. An athletic trainer will use video analysis to adjust your movements to be more efficient, build strength and avoid re-injury.
“We want to fill that gap from physical therapy to full recovery, giving the everyday athlete the same care our competitive and elite-level athletes get,” says Amy. “We want to help patients improve their performance as they heal.”
At the clinic, patients can use technology like an anti-gravity treadmill to build muscle during recovery. This treadmill uses a lifting effect to ease the impact on your muscles and joints. It can also help improve your recovery time. The clinic also uses dynamic air compression therapy to reduce muscle fatigue and soreness, to help you recover faster.
Improve your performance at OhioHealth sports clinics
You are at risk for certain injuries if you play a sport like running or golf. At OhioHealth, the sports clinics use technology to screen for and analyze these risks.
For example, the golf clinic uses a golf simulator and Titleist Performance Institute screening to study your swing. There are also clinics for runners, cyclists, throwers and a customizable sports clinic for other sports. These clinics use video analysis to evaluate sport specific movements and prescribe exercises to correct any dysfunction. Many of our athletic trainers are certified in this technology, so you can be confident you are receiving an accurate analysis.
Become more active
An athletic trainer is a valuable resource when starting a new sport or exercise program. They will work with you to find the best activity for you, build a strength and conditioning plan, and give tips for avoiding injury. The clinics are also available for workouts and personal training. “We will work with you to achieve your goal, no matter what it is,” Amy says.
Your athletic trainer can connect you to sports medicine and primary care doctors if needed. In addition, you will have access to a sports dietician and a licensed massage therapist. The clinic’s goal is to offer a multi-disciplined approach. “You can get all your needs met in one place, including physician visits, athletic training, video analysis, biomechanics and everything else,” says Amy.
Athletic trainers are not just for athletes. Anyone looking to be active, healthy and strong could benefit from athletic training services. The new athletic performance clinic at OhioHealth’s New Albany Medical Campus will be open for clients on December 6.