August 17, 2014

SLU AT Students Join PA Students for an Orthopedic Casting Lab


On Thursday, August 14, 2014 students from the Saint Louis University Physician Assistant Education program and Athletic Training program participated together in an orthopedic casting lab.  The lab was conducted by Certified Athletic Trainer and NATA Hall of Fame member Rod Walters; and coordinated by SLU faculty members Sr. Mary White (PA) and Dr. Kitty Newsham (AT).  This interprofessional learning opportunity was a great experience for students in both programs.  More information about Rod Walters ATC and his program are available at: http://www.rodwalters.com/

Rod Walters ATC demonstrates a casting technique on SLU AT student Tori Lycett
SLU AT students Michael Aaron and Eldon Reid practice a casting technique.


August 15, 2014

SLU AT Student Gets an International Sports Medicine Experience in Madrid


Summer Internship Blog Post - Saint Louis University, Madrid Campus
By: Christian Ahlstrom (MAT Class of 2015)

This summer, I had the privilege to do my internship abroad.  I went to the SLU campus in Madrid, Spain to get experience with physiotherapists Alvaro Garcia-Romero and Angel Basas, with the Real Federación Española de Atletismo and the Real Federación Española de Gimnasia.  I was lucky to work with these Olympic level athletes everyday for the past month and a half.  I was nervous at first because I was in a new country and I had intermediate understanding of the language.  But, the moment I started working with the athletes, that all went away.  They really appreciated the fact that I came all the way over from the states to help them this summer.  I learned that communicate was the key with my athletes.  Some of them would want to practice their English with me, while others would help me with my Spanish.


From this experience, I was able to learn how a different part of the world practices sports medicine.  I assisted in rehabilitation protocols, injury prevention workouts, evaluation of injuries, as well as some administration duties.  In Spain, they rely on a lot of manual techniques, like massage and manipulations, to help their athletes.  They also use electro stimulation and kinesiotape during rehabilitation sessions.  I was able to learn about all of these different techniques and how to implement them into my own rehabilitation protocols in the future.

Alvaro Garcia-Romero, Christian Ahlstrom and Angel Basas
This has truly been an amazing experience and I wish I had more time to work with these physical therapists and athletes.  I have loved working here every minute.  I have learned so much from this internship and cannot wait to bring back what I have learned.

I would highly recommend this opportunity to any athletic training student.

Students in the Saint Louis University Athletic Training Program have a required internship in the summer between their two professional years in the program. This blog post details a student's reflection on their internship experience.

August 12, 2014

SLU AT Student Gets Intensive Learning Experience at J Robinson Intensive Wrestling Camps



Summer Internship Blog Post - J Robinson Intensive Wrestling Camp
By: Mike Griffith (MAT Class of 2015)

This summer I spent 56 days with the J Robinson Intensive Wrestling Camp, a program run by the University of Minnesota’s head wrestling coach, J Robinson. The program is currently in its 38th year of punishing workouts, 4-a-day practices, early morning rises, and copious injuries; in other words, a hard day’s work for any athletic trainer. That’s not to say that all of the difficulties of the camp do not present any benefits. 

Over the duration of the camp, the J Robinson Wrestling Camp has exposed me to a wealth of opportunities from which to learn. With 175-300 teen wrestlers at each camp, there is a good deal of ailments to see, and most of them are skin. I’ve seen cellulitis, folliculitis, more ringworm than I could ever count, and even more cases of impetigo. These were infections that I had rarely seen in my previous clinical sites, and now I can identify them in a heartbeat. While an important bit of knowledge to have, I am hoping that I don’t have to worry about skin as regularly, going into the future.

Mike Griffith (far left) with the rest of the AT staff at the camp.
Just as common as the infections at camp are the illnesses and injuries. The first two days of camp at Minneapolis had more cases of cramps and heat exhaustion than I had ever seen in my previous two semesters. For this very reason, the camp had fairly rigorous hydration policies. Athletes were not allowed to lose more than 1.5% of their initial weight for the duration of camp, under threat of sitting out for 24 hours. 
Furthermore, there were the injuries. At J Rob I saw sprains, strains, tears, subluxations, fractures, acute or chronic injuries, and the day-to-day overuse injuries. The greatest experience actually happened my last week, where I was able to stabilize the head of an athlete with a suspected cervical spine injury, and I was then able to call the shots throughout the transportation of the athlete from the ground to the spine board. Thankfully the athlete was fine, and it was all precautionary, but it proved to be a great environment with which to practice possibly one of the most important critical care techniques in a live setting.

The J Robinson Intensive Wrestling Camp definitely lived up to its title as an intensive camp. It was as much a boot camp for Athletic Training as it was for wrestling, thanks in part to the oftentimes 100+ ailments that needed to be treated daily. Thanks to the camp, I was forced to confront some of the weaker points in my development as an Athletic Trainer, and make them stronger. I had to adapt to a changing environment, work long hours, and get enough rest so I could repeat the process the next day. As difficult as it all was, I’m very happy with my experience and the amount I have advanced as an athletic trainer thanks in part to J Rob.

Students in the Saint Louis University Athletic Training Program have a required internship in the summer between their two professional years in the program. This blog post details a student's reflection on their internship experience.

SLU AT Student “Gets Grizzlie” Spending a Summer with Pro Baseball Team



Summer Internship Blog Post - Gateway Grizzlies
By: Josh Harris (MAT Class of 2015)

A part of the West Division of the Frontier League (Independent League; non-MLB affiliate), the Gateway Grizzlies Professional Baseball team resides right across the Mississippi River in Sauget, Illinois. GCS Ballpark is where the Grizzlies play their home games and it was also was the site of my athletic training internship for the summer. Outside of GCS Ballpark, I had the opportunity to gain more athletic training experience by traveling with the team to T.R. Hughes Stadium in O’ Fallon, Missouri. These trips to O’ Fallon would occur when the Grizzlies were scheduled to play their cross-town rival, the River City Rascals. I share the internship experience with a fellow ATS from the University of Arkansas, Andy Scheumann, and the head athletic trainer of the Grizzlies, Geof Manzo, MS, ATC. Geof was really great to work with and he undoubtedly helped Andy and I build upon our athletic training skills.

Andy Schuemann, Izzy the Grizzly, Geof Manzo ATC and Josh Harris
The vast majority of my summer internship was spent at GCS Ballpark; in the athletic training room, treatment and rehabilitation room, on the field, and in the dugout. A typical day interning with the Grizzlies would begin around 1pm and end about an hour or so after the game was over. As soon as we arrived at GCS, Andy and I had to fold towels, that would later be used by the players on both teams, and also prepare the visiting team’s athletic training room. After these prep tasks were completed, Geof, Andy, and I would wait for our players to show up and then begin treatment and rehab with those who needed it. Some common treatments we performed on the players throughout the day included: therapeutic ultrasound, electrical stimulation, thermotherapy via heat packs, cryotherapy via ice bags, massage, taping, therapeutic exercise, and stretching. The treatment session lasted until 3pm, which is when we would go outside and begin the warm-up session for pitchers. About 30 minutes after that, we would begin the warm-up session for position players. After the warm-ups were over for both sets of players, batting practice would commence and then end around 4:45pm.

From the end of batting practice up until about 6:30pm, we would again perform treatment on any player that requested it or needed it. It was then time for the game, where all of us would be sitting in the dugout with the team. If any injury presented itself during the game, Geof would walk out on the field and evaluate the athlete. After his evaluation, he would come back into the dugout and discuss his findings with Andy and I. If there was no injury presented during the game, we would mostly spend our time making sure our players (and umpires) were properly hydrated. At the conclusion of the game, Andy, Geof, and I would all return to the athletic training room and wait for players to come to us for any treatment or evaluation before they went home for the night. The last task Andy and I had before the day was considered over was cleaning up the opposing team’s athletic training room.

Going into this summer internship, I really didn’t know what to expect. It was a totally new environment for me, as I had never worked with a baseball team this in-depth throughout my whole first year of athletic training practice. The experience was also an opportunity to practice with high-level athletes; much higher of a level than I had worked with in previous athletic training experiences at Parkway South High School and Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville. Overall, I feel that I have gained a lot of athletic training knowledge by engaging in this internship. I am very blessed to have had the opportunity to work with a great athletic trainer, staff, and team. This experience with the Grizzlies taught me a lot and I am looking forward to the next steps and challenges in becoming an athletic trainer.

Students in the Saint Louis University Athletic Training Program have a required internship in the summer between their two professional years in the program. This blog post details a student's reflection on their internship experience.

SLU AT Student Returns Home to the Sunshine State for a Summer Internship Experience

Summer Internship Blog Post - Pensacola State College
By: Shannon Kane (MAT Class of 2015)

Pensacola State College has three main campuses in the Pensacola area.  The Pensacola campus is where the sports teams practice, live, and play.  Select Medical and Select Physical Therapy provide AT, PT, and sports medicine services to the athletes attending PSC.  Pensacola State College, formerly Pensacola Junior College, is a community college with a variety of degrees and programs available, including many Associate’s degrees and an exceptional BSN program.


This summer I have definitely been busy!  Phil Loesch ATC, the Assistant Athletic Trainer, is also the strength and conditioning coach for the volleyball, softball, and women’s basketball teams.  I get to come along to morning workouts and get some experience helping him coach.  A strength and conditioning certification is something I am very interested in pursuing in addition to athletic training, and this wonderful experience has helped me get a better look at this career path.

It is summer, so many of the sports are not in season, but the Pensacola State Athletic Department hosts many summer camps for children ranging from 5 year olds to high schoolers.  I have had the opportunity to run warm ups, give talks about the importance of hydration, and provide athletic training services, along with the ATCs, to the softball, baseball, basketball, and volleyball camps.

Deb Lee ATC, Shannon Kane and Phil Loesch ATC
Ken Byrd PT, ATC, who is an athletic trainer and a physical therapist, comes over to the athletic training room a couple times a week so that the student athletes don’t have to go to the clinic.  Ken has a great personality, and has been so much fun to work with.  He takes time out to make sure that I learn something every time I am with him.  If I have not seen something new that day, he asks me what I want to learn.  We have discussed everything from the Graston Technique and joint mobilizations, to the physiology behind the healing process and the use of modalities.

Deb Lee ATC is the Head Athletic Trainer at Pensacola State.  She has been with Select Physical Therapy for almost 20 years.  Her southern accent and huge smile are enough to make anyone’s day better.  She is very smart, and has helped me grow as an athletic training student.


At PSC, although I have been there for a very short time, I feel like part of the family!  The atmosphere is always light-hearted and welcoming.  The relationship of respect and trust that Deb and Phil have developed with the coaching staff, not only for them as people, but as professionals, has carried over to me.  The coaches all respect what I have to say, and have welcomed me as one of their own.  It will be a sad day when I have to leave the Pensacola State family!  I have learned a lot, but the summer is not over yet.  I look forward to the adventures to come!

Students in the Saint Louis University Athletic Training Program have a required internship in the summer between their two professional years in the program. This blog post details a student's reflection on their internship experience.

August 11, 2014

SLU AT Student Spends a Summer with the Sixers



Summer Internship Blog Post - Philadelphia 76ers Basketball Camps
By: Emily Costabile (MAT Class of 2015)

This summer, I had the opportunity to work for the Philadelphia 76ers as their summer basketball camp athletic training intern.  The 76ers camp brings in kids from all over the world.  Representing 20 different countries, kids ages 8-18 can come for weeks at a time to gain experience playing basketball.  From 8am-9pm the kids participate in a variety of basketball activities, from playing full court games to knock-out competitions.  I have been working under the direction of Caitlin Murphy, ATC, alongside five other athletic training interns.  Caitlin is a graduate of Ithica College in Ithica, NY and is currently in grad school working towards her DPT. 

Emily Costabile and Caitlin Murphy ATC
The camp is held on Valley Forge Military Academy and College’s campus.  There are twelve different courts the campers play on, and our job is to sit at each of the set of courts and respond to whatever injury may occur during competitions.  We have seen a large variety of injuries in the past 4 weeks of camp, all ranging in severity.  I have even had the opportunity to accompany some of the campers to the hospital as well as visits to an orthopedics office.  

This experience with the 76ers has given me great insight into the different settings I could potentially practice in down the road.  It has allowed me to practice skills I previously had as well as develop a whole set of new ones.  Working with athletic training students from five different schools has also given me a chance to see how others practice and what techniques they find useful.  The experience I have had here has been invaluable and I am grateful to the kids and staff for helping make this summer one I will never forget.  

Students in the Saint Louis University Athletic Training Program have a required internship in the summer between their two professional years in the program. This blog post details a student's reflection on their internship experience.

SLU AT Student Gets a Physician Extender Internship Experience



Summer Internship Blog Post - Advanced Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
By:  Connor Doherty (MAT Class of 2015)

This summer I have had the incredible opportunity of working with Amy Schork, ATC, Dr. Tyler Wadsworth, and Dr. Jason Browdy as well as the rest of the staff at Advanced Orthopedics and Sports Medicine.  They operate an orthopedic medicine practice that sees a variety of patients, from young athletes to geriatric patients.  At their location they have a variety of tools at their disposal, including x-ray machines, various injections, and a physical therapy clinic that is stationed right next door to them.  Dr. Wadsworth and Dr. Browdy are the respective team physician and orthopedic surgeon for Clayton High School, Ladue High School, and Webster University.  Dr. Browdy also serves as the orthopedic surgeon for the St. Louis Cardinals.

Connor Doherty and Amy Schork ATC
During my time here I have learned a ton about the importance and role of certified athletic trainers working in the role of a physician extender.  In this role they take on many responsibilities in the office, and act as an extension of the physician, to increase quality and effectiveness of health care provided.  I had the great opportunity of not only observing and assisting Dr. Wadsworth during patient visits, but also was able to observe Dr. Browdy in the operating room.  This summer I have learned a great deal about the field of sports medicine and how certified athletic trainers can contribute to it in a non-traditional way through the role of the physician extender.

Students in the Saint Louis University Athletic Training Program have a required internship in the summer between their two professional years in the program. This blog post details a student's reflection on their internship experience.

August 07, 2014

SLU AT Students Spend a Summer in Columbia with the Mizzou Tigers


Summer Internship Blog Post - University of Missouri
By: Andria Lampe and Will Rath (MAT Class of 2015)

This summer we were fortunate enough to work at the University of Missouri under head athletic trainer Rex Sharp, ATC, assistant athletic trainer Casey Hairston, ATC, and the athletic training staff, including SLU graduate Dan Herrin, ATC.  We worked with a diverse group of Mizzou’s athletes, including the football, swim & dive, soccer, track & field, and softball teams. Every day brought on new challenges and opportunities to allow us to grow as future athletic trainers and gain valuable experience in the field.

SLU AT Students Will Rath (3rd from left) and Andria Lampe (second from right) on Faurot Field with 2014 SLU Alum Dan Herrin MAT, ATC (on right)
Our responsibilities ranged from filling water for 6:30 am football conditioning, helping with rehab treatments in the athletic training room, assisting with high school sports camps coverage and afternoon football practices, and being present in the athletic training room for all athletes throughout the day.  Of course, we always followed morning conditioning with a hearty breakfast with the rest of the staff every morning to prepare for the long days of rehab and treatment. On a typical day we would assist with twenty football rehab treatments consisting of strengthening exercises, a broad spectrum of modalities, and functional rehabilitation.  Swimmers, divers and runners trickled in and out throughout the day as well.  We were lucky enough to utilize advanced equipment such as a Swim-Ex, a Biodex and the DARI to get our athletes back on the field quicker.  We saw a variety of injuries throughout the summer that took advantage of the great technology Mizzou provides for their student-athlete population.

The time we have spent at Mizzou and the experience we have gained has helped shape and guide us towards the athletic trainers we are striving to be. The staff here has always been open to our questions and willing to help however they can.  We have been exposed to techniques and ideas that can only be learned through hands-on experience in the athletic training room. Rex Sharp and his staff have excelled as a result of years of practice. Having the opportunity to learn from one of the top programs in the country has been a once in a lifetime experience.

Students in the Saint Louis University Athletic Training Program have a required internship in the summer between their two professional years in the program. This blog post details a student's reflection on their internship experience.

August 04, 2014

SLU AT PROGRAM DIRECTORY AND LINKS

Main Number: 314-977-8561
Fax: 314-977-6988
Program e-mail: atep@slu.edu
Mailing Address:
SLU Athletic Training Program
3437 Caroline Mall, Suite 2004
St. Louis, MO 63104
Twitter: @SLU_AT

ADMINISTRATION

Mark Reinking PT, PhD, SCS, ATC, Chair, 
Dept of Physical Therapy and Athletic Training
Office: 314-977-8505

Anthony Breitbach PhD, ATC, Program Director
Office: 314-977-8654
Cell: 314-413-2543

Tyler Wadsworth MD, Medical Director
Office: 314-721-7325

CORE FACULTY

Timothy Howell EdD, ATC, Clinical Education Coordinator
Office: 314-977-8637

Mike Markee ATC, PT, COMT
            E-mail: mmarkee@slu.edu
            Office: 314-977-8109

Kitty Newsham PhD, ATC
Office: 314-977-8507


ADJUNCT FACULTY

Lori Khazen, MS LAT, CSCS, Instructor - MAT 616
Office: 314-368-9772

Michael Ross PhD, Instructor - MAT 562
            E-mail: rossmj@slu.edu
            Office: 314-977-2292


Tyler Wood MAT, ATC, Graduate Assistant
            E-mail: twood9@slu.edu
            Office: 314-977-8561


STAFF

Jennifer Baine, Administrative Assistant
Office: 314-977-8561

Bridget Quirk MAT, ATC, Outreach Athletic Trainer/Instructor
E-mail: bquirk1@slu.edu
Office: 314-977-8561

Leslie Neistadt ELS, Managing Editor, NATA Journals
Office: 314-977-7811

Kevin Clear, Editor, NATA Journals
E-mail: clearkp@slu.edu
Office: 314-977-8591

August 02, 2014

SLU AT Student Experiences Personal and Professional Growth During Summer Internship


Summer Internship Blog Post - Washington University
By: Brittany Koops (MAT Class of 2015)

When I transferred to SLU last summer as a post-baccalaureate student I had so many expectations, thoughts, and hopes for the upcoming year and even more so towards to summer internship. While my internship at Washington University in Saint Louis was nothing like I had dreamt, it was still more than I could ask for.

I’ll admit, I was skeptical at first. I didn’t know what to expect going into the internship, and I was somewhat saddened that I was staying in Saint Louis instead of returning home to be with my friends. While I was skeptical I went in with a positive attitude, and knew I’d give it nothing but my best. From the first day I walked in I felt welcomed and trusted as a student. The amount of freedom they gave me made me feel competent in my skills. The staff wasn’t over bearing and constantly hovering over me. I had space to work, and practice the skills that I had the past year to learn.

Brittany Koops with Washington Univ. AT Jacob Blasingame MAT, ATC (SLU MAT Class of 2011)
I’m the type of person who hates being wrong. When a professor or instructor hovers over me I feel nervous, incompetent and not trusted. This causes me to freeze up, and I’m not always able to practice or show my knowledge to my full potential. While I was allowed to take control, I was confident knowing that if I did need help that the staff would be right there to eagerly answer any questions or help me if I needed it. The athletic trainers at Wash U were all friendly, and open to helping me reach my full potential.

This past year has been a real struggle for me, It is the first time I’ve ever been away from my family and friends. This has caused me to feel out of place, and uncomfortable. When I don’t feel like I belong then I crawl back into my shell and hide. I sit back and watch more than try to stand out and show off how much I actually know. This past summer at Wash U has really helped me gain the confidence in myself that I will need this upcoming year, and even more so in my future. I felt welcomed by all the staff, and that made me feel like I was wanted and a part of the team this past summer. I wasn’t afraid to speak up, or communicate with the coaches. The compliments from the coaches at the soccer camp on how I went above and beyond when I could to help them made me feel like I finally wasn’t passing the years by in Saint Louis unnoticed. I realized the coaches could see my passion, and I just needed to show it more, and take that drive to allow myself to open up and not be afraid to be wrong and practice my skills. I need to not be hesitant to ask questions, or speak up about what I believe.

I was wrong in an initial assessment of an injury once during the summer, and the world didn’t end like I thought it would. The summer went on, and I learned from my mistake. I learned to be more careful, and to communicate better. I gained confidence in my assessment skills, and learned to trust my own knowledge. I learned different ways of taping and modifications to the special tests, that can help me improve my assessment skills even more. All in all, I feel that the confidence I gained these past few months is the most valuable thing I can take away. Without confidence I won’t be able to learn more. I need to carry this confidence with pride, and not be afraid to show off the skills that I have learned. By taking this new found confidence I will be happier, and it will be easier to find a place to belong here in Saint Louis. I will no longer be hiding back in the shadows just waiting for the semester to pass by. I now look forward to my upcoming clinical rotation year, and finding my place and confidence there, to really be able to practice and master the skills I’ve spent years of my life studying.

Students in the Saint Louis University Athletic Training Program have a required internship in the summer between their two professional years in the program. This blog post details a student's reflection on their internship experience.

SLU AT Student Experiences Collaborative Athletic Health Care at Division I Setting



Summer Internship Blog Post – Georgetown University
By: Tori Lycett (MAT Class of 2015)

During my summer internship I had the opportunity to work under Erin Pettinger ATC at Georgetown University in Washington, DC. Georgetown University, much like other NCAA Division 1 colleges, has multiple Athletic Trainers on staff who each have designated sports. Erin specifically works with Men's Lacrosse, Men's Golf, and Sailing, however I had the chance to get experience with several other ATs on staff under the supervision of Erin.  Each of the Athletic Trainers on staff came from different parts of United States and had different backgrounds in education and experience. This gave me the opportunity to learn different techniques, and help to widen my perspective of different parts of Athletic Training. At Georgetown University most of the athletes on campus were there for summer workouts or summer camps. Although it was not the busiest season for sports, this gave me the opportunity to better understand how a D1 Athletic Training room functioned, and how the staff utilized interprofessional care for each athlete. Each week different physicians would visit the athletic training room to run physicals, check up on athletes, and talk directly with the athletic training staff to ensure that everything was ready for the fall preseason. Throughout my internship I also had the privilege to observe one of Georgetown University sports medicine PT's who had a very unique and educational approach to evaluations and treatment of athletes.

Erin Pettinger ATC, Tori Lycett and Emily Deck ATC.
Going into my internship I didn't know what to expect and went in open minded. I chose to intern at Georgetown because I want to eventually work in a D1 setting. Since I was once a college athlete I had an idea of what it would be like however being an athlete is completely different than athletic training. In my fall rotation I worked at Lindenwood University, a small NAIA college, however interning at Georgetown University ensured my goal. Working with college athletes is completely different then other settings. Not only are the athletes motivated differently but the interprofessional care they receive is different especially in D1. In D1 the athletic trainers directly work with physicians, orthopedists, PTs, etc. That aspect of health care is not only important for the patient-centered care of the athlete, but it also helps for you as a practioner to learn. I can't thank Erin and the athletic training staff at Georgetown University enough for giving me this opportunity to learn and become more familiar with the dynamics of a D1 athletic training room.

Students in the Saint Louis University Athletic Training Program have a required internship in the summer between their two professional years in the program. This blog post details a student's reflection on their internship experience.

July 29, 2014

SLU AT Student Returns to CBC for a New Type of Clinical Experience


Summer Internship Blog Post - Christian Brothers College High School
By: Tony Mosello (MAT Class of 2015)

This semester I have had the opportunity to work at Christian Brothers College (CBC)  High School with Athletic Trainer Kristen Jeans ATC from Excel Sports and Physical Therapy.  CBC is located in Town and Country, MO, only 20 minutes from SLU’s campus.  Under Kristen’s supervision, I have worked with a variety of sports during my two-month internship, seeing injuries in football, soccer, baseball, and basketball. During the season, CBC has five soccer teams, four football teams, and five basketball teams, and the athletic training room is often a very busy place.  Luckily for me, this was not my first experience at CBC High School.  I was placed here for my Fall PY1 clinical rotation and everyone was excited to have be back to help!  The coaches asked how my spring semester went and congratulated me on attaining my degree. The athletes were happy to have me back as well; often asking if I would be back with them this fall.  It was a great advantage already knowing the layout and routine of the school, but more so was having already built a great relationship with Kristen.   

Kristen Jeans and Tony Mosello
Going into this summer internship, I already knew it was going to be very different from my fall clinical placement.  The majority of the two-month internship was filled with youth camps, something I had little-to-no experience in beforehand.  The summer started out with a few little league baseball and football camps. Then the youth basketball and soccer camps began.  Then finally, the CBC student athletes were attending the camps.  The best part about the summer youth camps was that the coaching staff from each respectable sport put-on the camp themselves.  Kids were able to learn first-hand from the coaches a variety of different techniques and skills.  The age group varied for every camp, but over the summer I have treated kids as young as 8 years old.  Along with most of my class, this was a first for me.  However, it was an excellent opportunity to gain experience in a part of the Athletic Training field that I had no previous knowledge of. Especially important because I believe our scope of practice will continue to shift towards youth sports in the future.


My internship was filled with great experiences, but there were also a few challenges as well.  Evaluating a child is a lot tougher than evaluating a high school kid; you have to be able to tell when there is an injury or just when they want attention.  It is also difficult to get them to concentrate long enough in order to evaluate or treat them.  Another very different aspect is how you talk to them.  These kids obviously don’t understand all of the medical jargon we know, so talking to them in a way they understand is very important.  Working with youth athletes is extremely different from older sports, but they require just as much care and treatment.  Over the summer, I have gained a substantial amount of experience on how to not only evaluate and treat athletes in youth sports, but how no interact with them as well!   My second and final placement at CBC was an immensely importing learning experience, one that is sure to follow me throughout my future professional career thanks to Kristen!    

Students in the Saint Louis University Athletic Training Program have a required internship in the summer between their two professional years in the program. This blog post details a student's reflection on their internship experience.


SLU AT Students Get an Interprofessional Summer Internship Experience



Summer Internship Blog Post - NutriFormance/Athletic Republic
By: Kayla Kelley and Ju Hyung Kim (MAT Class of 2015)

NutriFormance/Athletic Republic is a top-of-the-line workout facility located in Frontenac, MO. They offer a variety of fitness programs in addition to their general gym membership such as personal training, group training, spinning, physical therapy, massage therapy, and nutrition counseling.

Kayla Kelley, NutriFormance staff member Emily Grace ATC (SLU MAT Class of 2014) and Ju Kim 
This really makes NutriFormance unique with all the different healthcare professionals on staff. It is not unusual for these healthcare professionals to work together. For example, the personal trainer may be working with their client’s physical therapist to gauge the client’s progress and figure out what they need to focus on. They might also work with their client’s nutritionist, especially if the client is trying to lose weight or has a medical condition such as hypertension. It is essential for these healthcare providers to be on the same page when it comes to the overall health of their client. Each healthcare provider has a different scope of practice and work together to provide the best care possible for each individual client. This is interprofessional practice at work and guarantees the best care for the client. It has been an amazing opportunity to be a part of this team over the course of the summer. We will be able to take what we have learned about interprofessional practice and put it into good use as we continue our journey to becoming athletic trainers.

SLU AT students providing an in-service for NutriFormance staff.
As interns, we spent most of our time on the Athletic Republic floor assisting the coaches with the speed, agility, and functional strength classes. Our time here this summer has really opened our eyes to the level of commitment and hard work it takes to be an athlete. We have also gained a lot of insight on proper running mechanics and immensely improved our rehab skills. A huge part of Athletic Republic is geared towards bridging the gap between a doctor’s clearance and full sports participation. They begin with a digital video analysis (DVA) to determine what areas need improvement. A program is then tailored to their specific needs, and as they build up their strength and agility, they are gradually released to participate. In this way, the athletes are able to return to their sport in the healthiest way possible while minimizing the chance of re-injuring themselves or incurring a new injury.


We feel very fortunate to have been a part of the team at NutriFormance/Athletic Republic. We were able to improve upon our communication and rehab skills—skills that will continue to build and serve us well in our future career. But above all, we learned the importance of the individual. Every athlete is different and has varying levels of fitness and motivation. Therefore, while you may have two athletes with the same injury, their rehab and strengthening programs may be different based on their needs and how their body responds. 


We are thankful for the experience we have had at NutriFormance and we are blessed to have learned so many things that cannot be gained from a textbook.

Students in the Saint Louis University Athletic Training Program have a required internship in the summer between their two professional years in the program. This blog post details a student's reflection on their internship experience.

July 28, 2014

SLU AT Student's Alma Mater Provides a Great Internship Opportunity


Summer Internship Blog Post - St. Xavier High School
By: Stuart Plamp (MAT Class of 2015)

This summer I have been fortunate enough to have my internship at my Alma Mater, Saint Xavier High School, in Louisville Kentucky.  Working with athletic trainers Danny McDonald ATC and R.J. Romero ATC, we have had a fantastic time working with athletes at the various camps that Saint Xavier hosts over the summer.  

RJ Romero, Stuart Plamp and Danny McDonald
The campers, ranging in age from incoming 1st graders to incoming 9th graders, have enjoyed working with coaches to better their skills in football, basketball, wrestling, baseball, lacrosse, tennis, and cross country. This has given me a chance to get experience covering a wide variety of sports.  It has also been great working with many of the coaches and teachers that I had during my time as a student athlete at Saint Xavier. We are lucky enough to have well equipped training rooms and athletic facilities at the school as well.

I have had a fantastic time honing my skills and learning new ones at Saint Xavier, and I am sad to see it ending in the near future.  Summer camps are nearly over, but I have will have the chance to work with the high school students when football practice starts in July.  I cannot wait to use the knowledge I have learned this summer at my new clinical site in the fall.

Students in the Saint Louis University Athletic Training Program have a required internship in the summer between their two professional years in the program. This blog post details a student's reflection on their internship experience.

SLU AT Student Spends a Summer Learning in the Big Leagues



Summer Internship Blog Post - St. Louis Cardinals
By: Michael Aaron (MAT Class of 2015)

Since May 26, 2014 I have had the opportunity to work with a team of great athletic trainers and team doctors that work with the St. Louis Cardinals.  I was lucky to start with some advice from 2014 SLU MAT graduates Dan Herrin ATC and Kelley DeGreeff ATC who were able to work with the Cardinals in the 2013 season.  Even with the advice and assurance that I would learn more than I could imagine, I am still blown away by the information and skill sets that I have been able to observe and begin to apply on a daily basis.

Greg Hauck, Michael Aaron and Adam Olsen
Greg Hauck ATC is the Head Athletic Trainer for the Cardinals and is assisted by Chris Conroy ATC and Adam Olsen PT, ATC. These three have had a big impact on the way that I look at and will evaluate injuries in the future.  Their approach is much different than other athletic trainers that I have worked with and it’s easy to tell why players get back on the field in good shape when coming off injuries.  This isn’t just due to the athletic trainer’s efforts, but also the team doctors that put a lot of time and thought into each evaluation and rehab process.  They all take their jobs very seriously and have fun doing it, which makes an atmosphere that the athletes are more inclined to include themselves in on a daily basis for any work that they may need done.  Not only did they make the environment good for the athletes, but it was a good environment for me to learn, observe and ask questions for hours every day.

Chris Conroy and Michael Aaron
Some of my responsibilities for the summer included making lots of hydration drinks, keeping first aid items stocked, help taking inventory, packing for road trips, keeping things organized and clean, and trying to absorb as much information as possible.  These things may not sound like a lot of fun, but they are things that have to be done in order to keep the athletes on the field every day.


Overall, I was very pleased with my experience and I can’t thank Greg, Chris and Adam enough for the opportunity to watch and learn from them all summer.  It is an experience that will have a big impact on the rest of my career.

Students in the Saint Louis University Athletic Training Program have a required internship in the summer between their two professional years in the program. This blog post details a student's reflection on their internship experience.

July 26, 2014

SLU AT Students Start a Year-long NFL Experience with Summer Internship


Summer Internship Blog Post - St. Louis Rams
By: Hilary Stepansky and Jose Mendez (MAT Class of 2015)

Working with the St Louis Rams has truly been a once in a lifetime opportunity.  We still find it unbelievable to be given the opportunity to serve as athletic training interns for the 2014 St. Louis Rams. Through countless hours of hard work and observation, we have learned about new treatment protocols, performance enhancement, and sports-specific rehabilitation progressions that has expanded our knowledge from textbook learning to real world application. The St. Louis Rams are without question a high-level organization from top to bottom.  We have been lucky enough to work with the great athletic training staff headed by Reggie Scott ATC, James Lomax ATC, Byron Cunningham PT, ATC, Tyler Williams ATC, and 2014 SLU Alum Nick Gastorf ATC. Each and every member of the athletic training team has taught us so much and the relationships we have made as athletic training interns are invaluable.

Back Row: Byron Cunningham, Tyler Williams, James Lomax and Nick Gastorf
Front Row: Jose Mendez and Hilary Stepansky
In the days leading up to our May 20th start date, we were not exactly sure what to expect. The first couple days of “information overload” were overwhelming, but soon enough the routine became natural.  From day one, we worked long hours until it felt like our legs would fall off, but we left everyday excited to come in the next day.  Rams Park has a way of making even the longest days fly by. The phrase “time flies when you’re having fun” applied to our experience at Rams Park.  Even with the early morning workouts, we could not help but wake up ecstatic for the opportunity and lessons that waited with each new day.  We have worked every OTA (organized team activities) and were recently extended through the rest of the season including training camp! So far we have worked alongside four of the six training camp interns, one seasonal intern, four full time staff members who amass over 29 years of NFL experience combined.  Our days as athletic training interns consisted of preparing the athletic training room for daily treatments, monitoring the recovery room for HRV (heart rate variability) readings each morning, pre-practice set up and post-practice breakdown, performing daily treatments with therapeutic modalities and therapeutic exercises, and taping the players prior to all practices.

Hilary Stepansky
Jose Mendez
With the amount of time we have worked with interns from other Athletic Training programs, we have grown personally and professionally by expanding our view of the profession outside our specific spheres of education.  This has been a valuable takeaway to us, as we can learn just as much from each other through simple observation and communication as we can from our textbooks in the classrooms.  Many of our weaknesses as clinicians may be strengths of other programs.  At the end of the day, we all want to leave as successful and confident athletic trainers; helping one another is essential to our success as a sports medicine team. Not only was knowledge exchanged, but also new connections were made that, otherwise, would have never been possible without this experience.

Always remember...it’s great to be St. Louis Ram!

Students in the Saint Louis University Athletic Training Program have a required internship in the summer between their two professional years in the program. This blog post details a student's reflection on their internship experience.

SLU AT Student Experiences Professional Baseball with Future Colleagues


Summer Internship Blog Post - River City Rascals
By: Eldon Reid (MAT Class of 2015)

My internship this summer was with the River City Rascals. The Rascals are an independent professional baseball team, which play in the West division of the Frontier League. The Frontier League consists of 14 teams primarily from the Midwest. The Rascals play their home games at T.R. Hughes Ballpark in O’Fallon, MO, which is about 35 miles west of Saint Louis.

Eldon Reid, Jordan Schaeffer ATC and Melanie Burkholder
I worked along with 3 other interns this summer. I got to work every day with Melanie Burkholder, an athletic training student from Missouri State. Chris and Aaron, who attend school at Lindenwood, were the other 2 interns that would come and help out. All of us worked under Jordan Shaeffer ATC, who is the athletic trainer for the River City Rascals.

 Melanie and I would get there usually about 4 hours before the game started. Our day usually started with us making the water and ice coolers for both teams. After that, we would administer treatments before players went to batting practice.  We would go out and watch the players take batting practice. Then we would perform pre-game treatments before the game started. After the game was over, we would do any post-game treatments to players if they needed it.


It was definitely a fun and challenging experience working with the Rascals. It was challenging due to the limited budget and number of resources, but we made do with what we had. The team was great to work with, and they would let us do some extra stuff like take batting practice or help shag balls during batting practice. I would like to thank EXCEL Sports and Physical Therapy and Rascals for allowing me to have this opportunity.

Good luck to the Rascals on the rest of the season!

Students in the Saint Louis University Athletic Training Program have a required internship in the summer between their two professional years in the program. This blog post details a student's reflection on their internship experience.

July 25, 2014

Golden Gopher Hockey Gives SLU AT Student a "Cool" Summer Internship


Summer Internship Blog Post - University of Minnesota
By: Angie Vitale (MAT Class of 2015)

This summer I had an amazing internship opportunity at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis.  Under the direction of athletic trainer Jeff Winslow ATC, I spent the summer working with the Men’s hockey team. Having never worked in a D1 environment before, I was not sure what to expect.  I quickly learned that a higher level of performance means a much higher degree of dedication, commitment, and hard work.  Even in their off season, these men come in everyday bright and early ready for whatever work out their strength and conditioning coach has made up for them.  Even after these rigorous work outs, many of them spend time on the ice, getting prepared for the coming season.


This level of play comes with it many perks in the athletic training room.  Many sponsors supply additional advanced modalities that I have never personally used before.  With all this advanced technology, however, the main thing I have learned from Jeff is that what we as athletic trainers do is primarily done with our own two hands.  Given all that he has to offer his athletes, his favorite techniques are still active release therapy, massage, and joint mobilizations.  As he has shown, it builds a higher level of trust and interaction with the athletes.

This has been a very eye opening experience into the world of D1 collegiate athletics.  In these past few months I have seen many chronic issues, some acute, and many athletes performing daily rehab. Athletes come in the training room to work, knowing that it will better their future performance.  They trust Jeff’s advice as well as the advice of their other superiors, and do what is requested of them.  I am very grateful for my time here and look forward to seeing what Golden Gophers hockey brings in the coming year!

Students in the Saint Louis University Athletic Training Program have a required internship in the summer between their two professional years in the program. This blog post details a student's reflection on their internship experience. 

July 01, 2014

SLU AT Program Has a Busy Week at the NATA Meeting in Indianapolis


The National Athletic Trainers' Association 65th Clinical Symposia and AT Expo took place in Indianapolis, Indiana on June 25-28, 2014.  In addition to participation in professional development and committee work, SLU AT Faculty participated as presenters in the event.

Dr. Kitty Newsham presented a poster entitled "Three Minute All-Out Test as a Diagnostic Challenge for Exercise-Induced Dyspnea, A Pilot Study" in the Free Communications Session on Thursday, June 26, 2014.

Dr. Kitty Newsham
Dr. Anthony Breitbach participated as a presenter in a Feature Presentation entitled "Interprofessional Management of the Diabetic Athletic" along with SLU AT Medical Director Dr. Tyler Wadsworth, St. Louis College of Pharmacy faculty Dr. Amy Drew and SLU Nutrition and Dietetics faculty Dr. Katie Eliot on Friday, June 27, 2014.

Dr. Katie Eliot, Dr. Tyler Wadsworth, Dr. Anthony Breitbach and Dr. Amy Drew
Dr. Drew and Dr. Wadsworth were interviewed on "NATA-TV"'s recap of the Friday activities.  See the video here (starting at 6 min mark): NATA-TV, Friday June 27, 2014 Highlights

The SLU AT Program, along with the Alumni Office at SLU, hosted an event on the evening of Friday, June 27, 2014 for SLU Alumni and friends at Ike and Jonesy's Restaurant in Indianapolis.

SLU AT Alums Sarah Hall, ATC Derrick Neuner ATC, Lizzy Kienstra ATC and Jacob Blasingame ATC at SLU Alumni Reception.
Overall, it was an outstanding week of scholarship, service and fellowship!

We look forward to welcoming the 66th NATA Clinical Symposia and AT Expo to St. Louis on June 23-27, 2015.