August 23, 2012

SLU AT Program Gets Facility Upgrades for New School Year

The  Saint Louis University Athletic Training Program in the Doisy College of Health Sciences is pleased to announce facility upgrades that have been finished over the Summer 2012 in time for the Fall Semester. The program once again has its own dedicated reception space and entrance in the Allied Health Building on second floor.

The Therapeutic Modalities Lab, room 2064 in the Allied Health Building, has also been upgraded with 2 new traction tables and new teaching technology.  The new teaching technology includes the Tegrity lecture capture system, which allows our students to access recorded class presentations on their computers or mobile devices.  Therapeutic Modalities (MAT 430) and Rehabilitation in Athletic Training II (MAT 555) will utilize room 2064 this fall.

View from the hallway of the new reception space.
SLU AT Program Administrative Assistant Jennifer Baine stands ready to greet program guests.
View from back to front of room 2064, a bright functional space.
The traction tables are just some of the fine equipment in room 2064.

August 20, 2012

SLU AT Program Welcomes New Faculty

SLU Athletic Training Program Announces Addition of Markee and Siler to Full-time Faculty

The Doisy College of Health Sciences at Saint Louis University is happy to announce the following changes in the teaching faculty and teaching assignments within the Athletic Training Program and the Department of Physical Therapy and Athletic Training.

Mike Markee, ATC, PT, OCS, COMT 
Mike Markee, ATC, PT, OCS, COMT is an athletic trainer and physical therapist with over 12 years of experience.  He is a board certified orthopedic specialist, and a certified orthopedic manual therapist.  He graduated from the Program in Physical Therapy at Saint Louis University in 2000, and Mike has worked as a PT almost exclusively in outpatient orthopedics.  While at SLU he served as an internship student with Billiken athletics and gained the Certified Athletic Trainer credential. In addition to his clinic work, he has worked in a variety of athletic settings, working with high school, collegiate, and professional athletes.  He has integrated aspects of both athletic training and physical therapy with his approach in sports specific rehabilitation.  In his most recent position, Mike served as a director of both inpatient and outpatient rehab staff at a 150-bed hospital in Memphis, Tennessee.
Mike will have a joint appointment in the Department of Physical Therapy and Athletic Training, where he will be teaching MAT 550 and 555 Rehabilitation in Athletic Training I and II.  He will also be engaged in scholarship and service in the Athletic Training Program.  Mike will work in the Physical Therapy Clinic at the SLU Student Health Center.

Bill Siler PhD
William (Bill) Siler PhD grew up in Waterloo Iowa and received his B.S. in Physical Education with a specialization in adapted physical education from the University of Northern Iowa in 1982.  He received an M.S.Ed. in Physical Education with a specialization in biomechanics from Northern Illinois University in 1984.  During that period he assisted Dr. Robert Shapiro in conducting motion analysis studies of the pitching staff of the Chicago White Sox during the era of Tony LaRussa and Dave Duncan and his thesis was a comparison of the fast ball and the slider using a mechanical energy analysis approach.  Bill then moved on to complete his Ph.D. in Exercise Science with a specialization in Biomechanics from Arizona State University in 1989.  His role at Arizona State focused on studies of muscle activation patterns with elite archers with Dr. Philip Martin and his dissertation studied changes in running mechanics during a run to exhaustion at a constant velocity.
Bill’s first faculty appointment was at The University of Texas at Tyler in the Department of Health and Kinesiology where one of his roles was as the faculty adviser to a physical therapy clinic housed in the department.  That role evolved laid the foundation for his move to the Department of Physical Therapy at Saint Louis University (SLU) in 1992.  Bill became Assistant Dean for Research in the School of Allied Health Professions in 1999, later Associate Dean for Research, and then Associate Dean for Administration.  Bill returned to the faculty in March 2012 and his primary role and responsibilities are in the Athletic Training Program, though he will also teach research related courses for the Health Sciences Program and in Health Informatics and Information Management and mentor graduate students and faculty in research.  Dr. Siler will be now teaching MAT 565 Research in Athletic Training and MAT 670 Athletic Training Capstone in addition to MAT 510 Athletic Training Kinesiology, which he has been teaching as an adjunct faculty since Fall 2008.

In addition to these changes in the Department of Physical Therapy and Athletic Training, Dr. Jason Bennett moves to a full-time faculty position in the Program in Physical Therapy and will serve as Co-Course Coordinator for DPT/MAT 430 Therapeutic Modalities with Dr. Anthony Breitbach.  Dr. Kitty Newsham will teach MAT 524 and 525, Musculoskeletal Assessment in Athletic Training I and II.

August 15, 2012

SLU AT Student Wraps Up a Busy Summer!

A Summer to Remember!
By: Bridget Quirk (SLU MAT Class of 2013)

Bridget Quirk (MAT Class of 2013) received a 2012 NATA Foundation Scholarship this summer.
Over the course of the summer, I was fortunate enough to experience not one, but three amazing opportunities. My triad of experiences included: providing medical coverage for Nike Elite 100, helping the MAT class of 2014 with their summer courses, and interning with Dr. Matt Matava at Washington University Orthopedics. There are an overwhelming number of career paths in the field of athletic training to consider as I begin my final year of the program. This summer, I had the unique opportunity to explore the role of an athletic trainer as an educator and as a physician’s extender.

I kicked off my summer in a traditional athletic training setting: the basketball courts. My classmates and I provided medical care to the Nike Elite 100 athletes under the supervision of the SLU athletic training faculty. We stayed busy taping and stretching the athletes before each practice. We were also responsible for assessing, treating, and documenting any injuries that occurred throughout the weekend. I have worked with high school basketball in the past; however, this experience was standout. The nation’s top 100 high school freshman and sophomore basketball players were invited to this skills development event. This elite-level of training brought about a high intensity atmosphere, which added a new dynamic to the experience.

Most of my summer days were spent working with the MAT class of 2014 as they entered the professional phase of the program. I was the teaching assistant for their summer athletic training course as well as a private and group tutor for gross anatomy. Although it was still a challenging class, I enjoyed gross anatomy much more the second time around. I was able to apply concepts from my kinesiology and musculoskeletal assessment courses to the cadavers, which reinforced my understanding of the material. Nonetheless, I spent quite a bit of time reviewing the textbook and identifying structures in the cadaver lab. The most enjoyable part of this experience was getting to know the incoming graduate class. The entire group is enthusiastic about the profession and eager to begin the program, especially now that they have survived gross anatomy. Over the course of the summer, the MAT students developed a basic skills set in preparation for their first clinical rotation. They will put these skills to use this week when football camp begins at their assigned high school or college. I am excited to hear about their first clinical experiences this fall.

The highlight of my summer was my internship with Dr. Matt Matava at Washington University Orthopedics in Chesterfield. Dr. Matava is the head team physician for the St. Louis Rams and Washington University athletics, and the assistant team physician for the St. Louis Blues. He specializes in orthopedic surgery and sports medicine, particularly injuries involving the knee and shoulder joint.

For the first few days, I observed Dr. Matava as he examined patients in the clinic. Most of these patients complained of activity-related injuries. After taking a history, evaluating the injury, and analyzing the radiographs, Dr. Matava would advise the patient on the suspected diagnosis and recommended course of treatment. He used a combination of laymen’s terms, analogies, and 3D anatomical models to effectively communicate with the patient. As soon as I became familiar with the clinic, Dr. Matava would allow me to see the patient first. I was responsible for taking a thorough history and documenting it appropriately. I would then present the case to Dr. Matava and suggest a possible clinical diagnosis. Often times, Dr. Matava came up with relevant history questions that I did not think to ask the patient. His feedback allowed me to greatly improve and refine my history taking skills throughout the summer.

Over the course of my internship, I became proficient in recognizing the signs and symptoms of common knee and shoulder orthopedic conditions. However, the most valuable piece of information I learned from this experience was the primacy of the patient. Dr. Matava constantly stressed the importance of interpersonal communication and showing interest in the patient’s activities and goals. This experience gave me insight to the role and responsibilities of an athletic trainer working as physician’s extender.

Washington University Orthopedics provides an excellent learning environment for graduate and medical students. The medical staff I worked with was amazing. Not only did I have the opportunity to learn alongside Dr. Matava’s medical residents and fellow, but also I was able to learn from them. They shared personal experiences, explained patient cases, and encouraged me to ask questions. I am very grateful to have had this opportunity to learn from Dr. Matava and his colleagues. I look forward to staying connected with Dr. Matava and the Washington University sports medicine team as I start my fall clinical with Washington University athletics.

Students in the Saint Louis University Athletic Training Education 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 02, 2012

SLU AT Students Team Up for a Great Summer Internship Experience

NutriFormance: A Wrap Up
By: Hilary Orf (SLU MAT Class of 2013)

This summer, I had the opportunity to intern at NutriFormance, a small gym co-owned by a husband and wife duo, located in Frontenac, Missouri.  NutriFormance packs a punch with its wide range of professionals in the health care industry, including: personal trainers, registered dieticians, physical therapists, sports performance coaches, and licensed massage therapists.  The staff is always full of energy and they genuinely care about each and every client they train. 
Hilary Orf (SLU MAT Class of 2013) demonstrates use of heavy ropes in physical conditioning.
I also had the extreme pleasure of working with my fellow classmate, Katie Schneebeck and Heidi Frey, MA, ATC, CSCS.  Katie and I meet with Heidi once a week to map out our schedule.  We talked injuries, proper lifting form, and strength testing.  Katie and I got to observe and eventually help lead speed and agility classes (sometimes we even joined in!) as well as followed the strength trainers as they take their clients through their circuit programs.  NutriFormance also offers a variety of classes such as mat Pilates, spinning, and hybrid classes that we are encouraged to try so that we can get a full understanding of what the facility is all about.
Katie Schneebeck and Hilary Orf (SLU MAT Class of 2013) pose in the gym with staff members from NutriFormance.
I honestly could not have asked for a better experience.  Not only did every member of the staff welcome us and encourage our learning, so did their clients.  It was really interesting to see how each trainer developed certain programs for their clients based on their educational background.  Heidi was more than helpful with answering any questions we had, as well as demonstrating proper techniques.  She organized our entire summer experience to make sure that Katie and I observed/participated in every aspect of the facility.  Heidi is so enthusiastic about her work, and it shows.  She takes each client’s goals and develops a personal training plan based on that client’s specific needs.  I am so grateful for all of the hard work that Heidi put in to our experience.  I learned more this summer that I thought possible.  I want to thank all of the Nutriformance staff for being so open and supportive of our education! I could not have picked a more perfect place to spend my summer!

Students in the Saint Louis University Athletic Training Education 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 01, 2012

SLU AT Student Develops Skills with Summer Camps at Washington University

Working and Growing at Washington U.
By: Rachel Cocek (SLU MAT Class of 2013)

The past two months I have gotten the opportunity to work with the four wonderful Athletic Trainers at Washington University in St. Louis: Rick Larsen, Jim Anderson, Kelly Lawson, and Jacob Blasingame.  In these few months, I covered various summer sports camps with athletes ranging from age six all the way up to seniors in high school.  Working with such young athletes allowed me to have an extremely unique experience which helped me further develop skills that I had originally only practiced on Division I and III collegiate athletes.  I definitely gained a lot more experience in clinical evaluation because sometimes kids don’t want to talk to you and tell you what’s going on with them so you really have to work with them and ask all the right questions to get information regarding their injury out of them.  On the other hand, some kids will tell you anything that’s on their mind so I learned how to filter what was most important in order to make an accurate diagnosis and create a recovery plan for them.  I also learned how to simplify my explanations and the details of their injury so that they could know exactly what was going on with them and not feel lost or out of the loop.  I feel that this is something that I can definitely carry over into working with high school and college athletes because they might not always understand the anatomical terms or the facts about the injury they have sustained.
Rachel Cocek (SLU MAT Class of 2013) taping an ankle before a practice session.
This summer has also made me realize that younger athletes and older collegiate athletes can be so different but so alike.  The younger athletes seem to be a lot more trusting right away just because of their personalities and how they interact with new people.  Towards the end of my internship, I worked a soccer camp for high school female soccer players and I could tell it was going to take a little bit more for them to trust me and the skills that I have.  Although they are different in this way, younger athletes and older athletes tend to have one big trait in common: stubbornness.  Neither wants to accept that they are injured and need to sit out in order to fully recover.  While it was frustrating for both the athletes and myself, it was so rewarding in the end when they recovered and could return to play pain-free.

I also loved working with four different Athletic Trainers because I got to experience how each one assesses an athlete or performs special tests.  I think working with so many ATCs had helped me to understand the process of evaluation and develop my own way of evaluating an athlete so as to reach the correct diagnosis and start treating that athlete.  I also got the chance to work with many of the different coaches at Washington University and it was so great because they were very enthusiastic about me being there and willing to work with me so that I could learn as much as I could in two months.

Students in the Saint Louis University Athletic Training Education 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.