Alumni from UCF’s athletic training program have traveled with organizations throughout the world, thanks to their talent, drive and skills learned in the classroom and through a variety of clinical internships.
Sometimes, the world comes to UCF. The program’s reputation of preparing career–ready athletic trainers reached Japan, where leaders at a judo therapy school saw how UCF was preparing future athletic trainers and how it could benefit its students.
Every year beginning in 2017, the Athletic Training Program has hosted the Keishin Group -Judo Therapy School from Japan for training in various procedures taught by program instructors and students. This year, the group’s visit was just in time before travel restrictions were put in place due to COVID-19. Judo therapy is essentially the practice of manual therapies to orthopedic injuries. In Japan, athletic trainers are a growing profession, and as such, the Keishin Group wanted to expand its students’ knowledge of athletic training related skills as it is in direct alignment with best preparing its students for future careers.
In the United States, athletic trainers are recognized as healthcare professionals by the American Medical Association. While athletic trainers play an important role of healthcare delivery to athletes, athletic trainers can also work in non-sports related fields where their expertise in triaging, diagnosing and life-saving skills are needed.
Because of the growing popularity of American football in Japan, the Japanese students also wanted to learn spine therapy evaluation, spine motion restriction, and hands on techniques like how to remove protective equipment from patient with a spine injury to provide the correct standard of care.
Students in the UCF AT program contributed to the workshops by demonstrating those skills, said Carlos Gual, instructor for the Athletic Training Program. “They also gained important experience in how to communicate effectively through cultural and language barriers, while understanding the importance of inter-professional healthcare.”
“In the ever evolving world of healthcare, certified athletic trainers play an important role, not only in athletic competitions and organized sports, but also in any business where there is a chance of an injury occurring on the job,” Gual said. “We look forward to our continued partnership with Keishin and helping those providers in Japan be best equipped to help patients.”