The NATA stands for the National Athletic Trainers Association. It is an professional organization for certified atheltic trainers as well as anyone who may be aspiring to become an athletic trainer. the NATA was established in 1950 with only a few members and has grown today to over 30,000 members. The mission statement of the NATA reads as follows: " the mission of the National Athletic Trainers' Association is to enhance the qualit of health care provided by certified atheltic trainers and to advance the athletic training profession."
Athletic training is a profession that is practiced by athletic trainers and or healthcare professionals in collaboration with team doctors or physicians. However, athletic training does not only pertain to athletics. Major corporations like car manufacturers such as Hundai use athletic trainers in their industrial atmospheres to ensure the safety of their workers. They can also work in clinical settings such as rehab facilities, doctors offices and retirement homes. The majority of athletic trainers choose to stay with atheltics because it is a more exciting atmosphere but other opportunities are out there. You might go as far as to say that athletic trainers are doctors with out the title of Dr.
Athletic trainers are involved with the on field care of an athlete. They participate in the prevention, diagnosis, and intervention of emergency situations. They are required to CPR certified as well as AED certified and certified as a first responder and emergency responder. In a clinical setting, athletic trainers act just as a physical therapist would; creating exercise and rehab programs for injured athletes, using theraputic modalities such as ultrasound and electrical stimulation as part of their treatments for athletes. Athletic trainers are not just standing on the sidelines in case of an emergency but they are also there to help prevent injury from occuring in the first place.
It is the athletic tranier's responsibility to educate athletes and other individulas such as EMT's and paramedics on how to best prevent injury or in the case of EMT's and paramedics, proper spine boarding techniques etc. Every year the Plymouth State Athletic Training Department holds a convention every year that educates individulas in the surrounding area on the proper techinques of helmet removal, spine boarding techniques and concussions.
Athletic training is recognized by the American Medical Association as an Allied Health Profession though they are not treated as such. They are looked down upon by physical therapists and doctors and are seen as an expendable profession; but the truth is that without athletic trainers there would be no one to do any on field evaluations of athletes or immediate clinical evaluations of atheltes proceeding an injury sustained. The only difference between athletic trainers and physical therapists or doctors is that they are not permitted to perscribe medications. Other than that there is not really a difference between the professions.