Missouri State University
Athletic Training Education Program
Department of Sports Medicine and Athletic Training

Rehabilitation and Fitness Program Designs in ATC 441

As part of a semester long project in Clinical Practicum VI, ATC 441, fourth year athletic training students are designing rehabilitation and fitness programs for their partners.  Course instructor, Dr. Allan Liggett designed this challenge in order to provide students with the experience of taking a patient from setting realistic goals though the design and completion of a workable plan.


Students meet at HealthTracks weekly to go through their program with their partner.  Allan states “in addition to designing rehabilitation and fitness programs, the semester long project also assesses other clinical proficiencies such as psychosocial, communication, and billing/administrative activities”.



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Sports Medicine Advisory Committee Update From Gary Ward

(Written by Gary Ward)

Gary2012Committee News Update from Gary Ward of the Sports Medicine Athletic Training (SMAT) Department:

I have decided to step down as the southwest Missouri representative on the Sports Medicine Advisory Committee for the Missouri State High School Activities (MSHSAA), a position I was selected for in 1986.  I have recommended that Jim Raynor, who is currently on the committee, become the sole  southwest region representative.  The purpose of the committee is to advise the board of directors for MSHSAA on matters related to the health and safety of high school athletes.  The committee is composed of members from throughout the state who are athletic trainers and physicians.  Link: http://www.mshsaa.org/SportsMedicine/

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Graduate AT Student Megan Jeffris Presents Via Podcast

Yesterday, second year graduate athletic training (AT) student Megan Jeffris presented her thesis research to a group of high school students through the Sports Medicine Broadcast in Pasedena, Texas.  The Sports Medicine Broadcast is a podcast to promote athletic training through discussion with many people in Sports Medicine and related fields.  They desire to use this medium to improve practice, connect students with the real world, and to improve and promote the profession of athletic training.


Megan Jeffris, ATC, LAT is finishing her last term in the Master of Science in Athletic Training (MSAT) program at Missouri State University.  Her thesis topic is levels of body satisfaction in collegiate female athletes in relationship to their social media usage.

Megan describes her rational of choosing this thesis topic here’ “through personal struggles and the strain of body dissatisfaction I have witnessed in other female athletes, I chose this topic because I wanted to know why this happens. With all the debate about “is social media a problem or isn’t it?” really got to my nerves; I thought it was naive of society to blame low body satisfaction on one part of our technological lives. There have been body satisfaction issues before social media, and there will continue to be body satisfaction issues after social media in our culture. I looked at self-reported ratings from a quantitative scale and qualitative responses from individual participants to see if there was a discrepancy between their ratings and what they put down on paper — and surely enough, there is.”

You may access Megan’s podcast here: http://sportsmedicinebroadcast.com.

(female athletes in social media-124)

Well done Megan!

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Airway Management in ATC 221

Today in ATC 221, clinical skills in athletic training, the first year athletic training students learned about devices to use for airway management.  These include Oropharyngeal Airways (OPA), Nasopharyngeal Airways (NPAs), suction devices, resuscitation masks, and bag-valve masks.  AT students learn these skills as part of their vital sign unit and professional rescuer CPR certification that is required for the AT program at Missouri State University.  In class, most students practice these skills on mannequins and not each other as many are not appropriate to practice on a conscious individual.  However, today, first year students Michael Nolan and Tyler Decavele of the students decided to practice the NPA on themselves (the one device that can be appropriately used on a conscious individual) and agreed to share their experience for this blog!

Video Link 1 (Michael) – IMG_0500 

Video Link 2 (Tyler) –  IMG_1457

First year AT student, Michael Nolan with AT graduate student, Josh Bell inserting a NPA.
First year AT student, Michael Nolan with AT graduate student, Josh Bell inserting a NPA.

**Disclaimer, this technique should not be attempted by anyone not formally trained.  Second disclaimer, the content of the video and some language may be offensive to some viewers**     

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Graduate AT Student Amy Smith Defends Thesis

Second year master of athletic training (MSAT) student Amy Smith successfully defended her thesis today in from of faculty, peers, and her committee. AmySmith1

Amy’s thesis topic was titled ‘Knowledge and Attitudes of Certified Athletic Trainers towards Providing Care for Athletes with Cerebral Palsy’.  To collect data for her study, she surveyed certified athletic trainers from all over the United States on both their experience with and attitudes towards working with athletes specifically with cerebral palsy disability.   Amy’s thesis committee included Sports Medicine and Athletic Training (SMAT) department faculty Dr. Tona Hetzler (thesis chair), Dr. Allan Liggett, and psychology department faculty Dr. Erin Buchanan.

Amy with her thesis committee (from left to right; Dr. Tona Hetzler, Amy Smith, Dr. Erin Buchanan, Dr. Allan Liggett).
Amy with her thesis committee (from left to right; Dr. Tona Hetzler, Amy Smith, Dr. Erin Buchanan, Dr. Allan Liggett).

Amy Smith is in her last term of the MSAT program.  During her time at Missouri State University, she has also held a graduate assistant positions at Mercy HealthTracks, Mercy Sports Medicine, and assists in teaching undergraduate athletic training courses in the department.  In addition, Amy has led several undergraduate athletic training student groups in medical volunteer opportunities with the Special Olympics of Missouri.  She is currently exploring job opportunities in athletic training post-graduation.

Please join the department in congratulating Amy for a job well done today!

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NATA Award Winners

Please join the Department of Sports Medicine and Athletic Training (SMAT) in congratulating two of our very own faculty members who will be receiving awards from the National Athletic Trainers’ Association (NATA) at the annual convention this summer.  Dr. David Carr of SMAT will be awarded the ‘Most Distinguished Athletic Trainer’ and Gary Ward of SMAT will be awarded the ‘Athletic Training Service Award’.  Take a minute to send them a congratulation and if you are planning on attending the Annual convention in June (in Saint Louis), the awards ceremony is open for all to attend.



Hall of Fame:  Terry Noonan

 Most Distinguished Athletic Trainer:  David Carr, Ron Walker

Athletic Training Service Award:  John Donnell,  Bruce Fischbach,  David Fitzhugh,  Cheryl Lindly,  Rob Marshall,  Jeffery McKibbin,  Amy Schork,  Phillip Vardiman,  Gary Ward


Congratulations Dr. Carr and Gary Ward!!

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Special Olympics Basketball Tournament

This past weekend, several undergraduate athletic training students from Missouri State University (MSU) traveled to Neosho, Missouri to provide volunteer medical coverage for a Special Olympics of Missouri (SOMO) basketball tournament.  Let and supervised by certified athletic trainer and MSAT graduate student, Amy Smith, these athletic training students were able to gain experience with this athletic population.

When reflecting on the experience, Amy, who is heavily involved with the SOMO stated “We had a really good time at the tournament. The students all had great questions and interest in this setting opportunity. We handed out a few bandaids and also had an ankle injury to assess which was a great experience for the students. We made a few new friends and I was able to see some athletes I had interacted with before. It’s always a heart warming experience to be with these athletes, especially when they remember you from other events.”

If you are interested in volunteering in future SOMO events as part of the medical team, please contact Kristin Tivener (MSU faculty) at KTivener@MissouriState.edu.  The SOMO sunner games will be held on the campuses of MSU and Drury this upcoming May 29-31st, 2015 and volunteers are needed!  Kristin will be following up with an announcement/call for medical volunteers in March/April for this event.

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2015 Missouri Athletic Trainers’ Association Educator’s and Student Leadership Conference

Over the weekend, several faculty members from the Sports Medicine and Athletic Training Department (SMAT) at Missouri State University traveled with over 25 undergraduate athletic training students to the 2015 Missouri Athletic Trainers’ Association Educator’s and Student Leadership Conference.  This was the third annual Educator’s and Student Leadership Conference and this year was held on the campus of Central Methodist University in Fayette, Missouri.  The conference began with combined sessions that included speakers for crisis response, emergency action plans, and application of the long spineboard latest literature reviews.  After a lunch, the students and educators/certified athletic trainers separated and attended sessions relevant to their areas of interest.  Dr. Allan Liggett and Kristin Tivener of the SMAT department presented at an afternoon student session on conflict management and effective communication.

The afternoon ended with the state quiz bowl competition.  Missouri State University was represented by Melanie Burkholder, Adam Sparks, Lyndsey Knapp, and Brittany Kiefer.  The team did a great job representing the MSU athletic training program and was cheered on by other students and faculty.

The conference day ended with a memorable trip home that included one van losing air in a tire and then again in the spare tire.  All faculty and students stopped to help which turned into a comical situation and illustrated good team work.



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Lacrosse and Hockey Equipment Day in ATC 241

equipment1Today in ATC 241 (Clinical Practicum II), members of the Missouri State University Men’s Lacrosse and Hockey teams came into class to discuss equipment and common injuries for their sports.  Athletic training students got a chance to learn from these athletes as they explained how the equipment fits and what layers are included in dressing for each sport.




Additionally, the lacrosse and hockey athletes discussed common injuries in their respective sports and considerations for athletic trainers such as field/rink conditions when responding to an injury.  Athletic training students learned the proper way to remove pads and equipment should they need to gain access for injury assessment and treatment.





Thank you to members of the MSU Men’s Lacrosse and Hockey teams for taking the time to come to class today!

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