Sports Medicine FAQs

Athletic Training

What is the difference between athletic trainers and personal trainers?

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Athletic trainers are sometimes confused with personal trainers. There is, however, a large difference in the education, skill set and job duties between an athletic trainer and a personal trainer. The athletic training academic curriculum and clinical training follows the medical model, and athletic trainers must graduate from an accredited baccalaureate or master’s program.

Personal trainers focus on fitness programs for all types of clients and can be accredited by national agencies for a variety of certifications.

How does the role of an athletic trainer differ from that of a physical therapist?

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An athletic trainer is specifically trained in on-field acute injury management to stabilize an athlete and direct further medical attention if necessary. On the other hand, a physical therapist evaluates and treats various musculoskeletal injuries with a focus on sub-acute and chronic conditions.

Can my local athletic trainer just do my rehabilitation following a sports injury instead of a physical therapist?

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The short answer is yes, they can direct rehabilitation. But if they are to do so themselves, it must be done with a physician’s order. A physical therapist has more leeway and can perform physical therapy services without the direction of a physician for a certain length of time, depending on the state you are in.

Concussion Management

What is the Baseline Test?

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The Baseline Test provides a view into an athlete’s pre-injury state and the current gold standard. Having a piece of data pre- and post-injury can assist your physician in the difficult decision about returning to play.

Does Performance offer ImPact testing for any athlete?

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Yes. We offer it at a $25.00 fee, but check with your local youth sports organization to see if they have a contract with Performance. We contract with several youth sports organizations which pick up the cost for your athlete.

How long does the ImPact test take?

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The test takes about 30 minutes to complete.

Is there an age restriction on testing?

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The test is valid for any child over the age of eight, although the test is slightly different for those over 11 years of age.

If my child has been diagnosed with a concussion, can he/she go back to sport immediately once symptom-free?

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Return to sports progression can be tricky. There should be a graded exposure back to sport based on heart rate, environment and symptom reproduction. Performance can assist you and your doctor in this progression to make best educated return to sport recommendation.

Should my child refrain from all exercise once diagnosed?

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New research from PLOS ONE shows that some level of light exercise may be helpful in recovery. Ask our concussion specialists about this new data.

My child had a Baseline Test last year. Do they need another?

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The test is valid for two years from date of test.

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