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.

SLU MAT Class of 2014 - 100% First Time Pass Rate on BOC Exam!

The Saint Louis University Athletic Training Program in the Doisy College of Health Sciences is proud to announce that the Master of Athletic Training Class of 2014 has achieved an 100% First Time Pass Rate on the Board of Certification Examination.

The SLU MAT Class of 2014 has 18 students, 14 took the the April exam and 4 took the June exam.

Congratulations to our most recent graduating class!

Angelo Bongiorno
Claire Botting
Abby Breseman
Jessica Buschjost

Cat Costello

Michelle Cybulski

Kelley DeGreeff

Nick Gastorf

Emily Grace

Dan Herrin

Blake Hudspeth

Heather Koch

Jay Maturan

Kelly Peck

Mary Rhatigan

John Runde

AJ Vander Vorste

Tyler Wood