Athletic Trainers in Sport Clubs

April 06, 2011

Ian McGregor, Ph.D.
McGregor & Associates

Here’s a typical situation I’ve run into on many campuses I’ve visited:

  • Women’s Rugby is a Varsity Sport
  • Men’s Rugby is a Club Sport

(or vice versa, or instead of rugby substitute any ‘high-risk’ sport)

In the above example, the women’s rugby (varsity) team has access to Athletic Trainers (and other medical services), while men’s rugby does not — or has to pay for a Trainer from Club funds — which they likely have to raise themselves.

The point is that Varsity Teams have access to Trainers, while Sport Clubs do not — irrespective of how ‘high-risk’ these Clubs are. Make sense? During my consulting trips to (many) campuses, I invariably recommend that Athletic Trainer services be provided based on the risk profile of the sport, and not on the sport’s status (i.e. whether it is varsity or not).

Experience tells me that the above scenario is the norm on most campuses across North America. However if your department funds Athletic Therapists for Sport Clubs or has a different model or if you have an opinion on all of this — please let us know!   Submit an article to the Newsletter!

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