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Health & Fitness Programs ►Sports Massage & Athletic Training Specialist Certificate Program with Externship


Program includes National Certification & an Externship Opportunity



The Sports Massage & Athletic Training Specialist

In today's industry of massage therapy, it is more important than ever to have knowledge and skills necessary for sports massage and athletic training. There are a wide range of opportunities available in today’s sports management and athletic programs, and there are many different potential opportunities that will be encountered throughout a typical career. Learning more about any massage therapy professional with information and tools that will ensure success in this field.


The Sports Massage & Athletic Training Specialist Program

course provides an overview of the theoretical principles for common massage therapy systems and manual techniques. The course discusses the historical influences from a variety of cultures in order to best understand the massage therapy industry and profession today. In addition, the course overviews selected major cautions and contraindications for giving massage, as well as the effects and benefits of proper massage therapy treatments in an athletic context. The course also serves to introduce both the theoretical basis as well as the demonstration of fundamental manual techniques in the traditional discipline of Western Massage (i.e. Swedish massage), and the contemporary systems of Myofascial Massage, Trigger Point Therapy, and Reflexology. Most importantly, this program also covers anatomy and physiology, and human pathology in order to understand all the inner working of the human body, how you think about the human body as a health care professional, how you communicate to colleagues and clients respectively about their bodies, and prepares you for continued studies for the applications of massage therapy.

Program Objectives

At the conclusion of this program, students will:

  • Therapeutic Massage specific to sports therapy
  • Athletic movement and effects on the body
  • Anatomy & Physiology as it pertains to massage therapy
  • Kinesiology principles relative to sports massage therapy
  • Pathology relative to sports massage therapy
  • Use Microsoft Office

HISTORY AND PERSPECTIVE OF MASSAGE THERAPY

  • Describe massage in the context of a natural healing art, and understand the traditional influences that helped to shape today's massage therapy profession.
  • Define massage and describe fundamental massage techniques commonly used.
  • Explain the concept of wellness, and understand how massage therapy is complimentary to Western medicine.
  • Comprehend the basic terminology used to describe the various types of massage styles and techniques commonly used.

THE BENEFITS AND APPLICATIONS OF MASSAGE

  • Explain the various massage techniques and the effects they have on the body, mind, and emotions.
  • Identify how and when massage therapy fits into the healing process of tissue repair.
  • Explain the primary effects that massage has on each of the body systems, and on the organism level overall.
  • Explain how massage therapy is used in treating human pathologies.
  • Understand how research literacy and the evidence-based practice is important for the massage therapy profession.
  • Explain the basic massage applications for each system of the body, and how massage is used to compliment standard medical treatment in hospitals and nursing homes.

CONTRAINDICATIONS AND MASSAGE GUIDELINES

  • Describe the major endangerment sites of the body, which require knowledge and caution to avoid injury during massage.
  • Explain the principles for general, regional, and local contraindications for massage.
  • Explain the common medications and understand the implications for giving massage to medicated clients.
  • Describe the major components for maintaining a professional presence, including sanitation and hand washing practices.
  • Explain the primary considerations for self-care as a massage therapist.
  • Describe the primary elements of massage applications, including topical substances, proper draping, safety and comfort of the client, and use of techniques.
  • Explain the paramount ethical and moral considerations for the professional of massage therapy, and confidentiality as a client’s right to privacy.

WESTERN MASSAGE TECHNIQUES & JOINT MOVEMENTS

  • Identify the primary manual techniques used in Western Massage, and the variations for each
  • Describe the variations of each of the primary western massage techniques, and how they can provide specific effects
  • Understand how to use western massage techniques appropriately in a session
  • Distinguish between active and passive movements, joint mobilization techniques, and stretching
  • Explain the therapeutic benefits of massage
  • Understand the application of mobilizing and stretching techniques for different joints and areas of the body, as well as the guidelines for applying joint movements

CONTEMPORARY MASSAGE AND BODYWORK

  • Identify three contemporary massage and bodywork systems that are popular within the industry
  • Explain the basic history and physiological basis of myofascial massage
  • Identify the primary guidelines, contraindications, and basic myofascial techniques used
  • Explain the basic history and physiological basis of trigger point therapy
  • Explain how to locate trigger points, and how they can radiate pain in predictable patterns
  • Identify the primary deactivation techniques used to treat trigger points
  • Explain the basic history and energetic basis of reflexology
  • Explain zone therapy and the guidelines in giving reflexology sessions, including positioning the receiver and body mechanic considerations for the therapist
  • Identify the primary foot reflexology techniques

INTRODUCTION TO BODY STRUCTURE AND ORGANIZATION

  • Describe body planes, cavities, regions, and directional terms
  • Define homeostasis and its importance to the human body
  • Outline the levels of organization of the body, including the body systems
  • Identify the structures and functions of the organelles of a typical human cell

THE SKELETAL SYSTEM

  • Describe the organization of the skeletal system
  • Explain the functions of bone, including its contribution to homeostasis
  • Identify the anatomical structures of the skeletal system, including the major bones of the body
  • Describe selected skeletal system diseases and disorders
  • Describe issues and changes related to the skeletal system at different points in the lifespan

THE MUSCULAR SYSTEM

  • Identify the anatomical structures of the muscular system, including the major muscles of the body
  • Explain the basic concept of muscle contraction
  • Describe how the muscular system contributes to homeostasis of the body
  • Describe selected muscular system diseases and disorders
  • Describe issues and changes related to the muscular system at different points in the lifespan

THE NERVOUS SYSTEM AND SPECIAL SENSES

  • Describe the organization of the nervous system
  • Identify the anatomical structures of the nervous system and special senses and their functions
  • Explain how an electrical impulse is conducted through a nerve
  • Explain how the nervous system contributes to the homeostasis of the body
  • Describe selected nervous system and special senses diseases and disorders
  • Describe issues and changes related to the nervous system and special senses at different points in the lifespan

INTRODUCTION TO KINESIOLOGY

  • Define kinesiology and explain the foundational concepts that that contribute to the study of human motion.
  • Explain why the study of kinesiology has relevance in the application of therapeutic methods.
  • Identify the areas of the body, positions in space, and the frame of reference for directional terminology.
  • Describe basic neuromuscular concepts and therapeutic applications to improve neuromuscular patterning

THE SKELETAL SYSTEM AND JOINT MOTION

  • List the structures and functions of the skeletal system.
  • Identify the four primary types of connective tissue found in the body.
  • Name and describe the three classifications of joints in the body.
  • Define a joint and describe its function.
  • Describe a synovial joint in the body, and explain range of motion, including factors that affect it.

THE NEUROMUSCULAR SYSTEM

  • Define the muscular system and describe its main kinesiological functions.
  • Explain the primary structure and function of the skeletal muscles.
  • Define and motor unit and the all-or-none law.
  • Define how a muscle is named and the origin and insertion of a muscle.
  • Define and describe the myofascial system and the manual techniques that address it.
  • Describe and compare the major divisions of the nervous system.
  • Define a sensorimotor loop and describe how it works in faulty movement patterns.
  • Describe the stretch reflex and a reflex arc.
  • Define a trigger point and its effects and describe the process of trigger point therapy.

BIOMECHANICS, POSTURE, GAIT, AND PALPATATION

  • Describe the primary biomechanical principles and concepts as they relate to massage therapists.
  • Explain the various forces that act on the human body, and the effects they have on movement and posture.
  • Describe several applications of biomechanics to effective and sound body mechanics for the massage practitioner.
  • Define posture and describe the components of optimal upright posture.
  • Explain the varying roles that skeletal muscles have in maintaining posture, as well as in creating movement.
  • Describe the effects of faulty posture and the negative impact it has on the body.
  • Define gait and explain the sequences of the full gait cycle.
  • Describe basic gait assessment methods.
  • Define palpation, and describe how palpation practiced as an art is useful in the massage therapy profession.

BONY LANDMARKS AND MUSCLES OF RESPIRATION

  • Identify the three main functions of the thorax and primary function of respiration.
  • List the bones and bony landmarks of the thorax, and demonstrate how to palpate them.
  • Identify the four major joints of the thorax and describe their locations.
  • Define and describe a rib separation and a rib dislocation.
  • Identify and describe two types of rib motion.
  • Identify the two primary muscles of respiration and the motion that they generate.
  • Define intra-abdominal pressure (IAP) and describe its role in respiration.
  • Identify the origins, insertions, and actions of the primary respiratory muscles.
  • Demonstrate the active movement and palpation of each primary respiratory muscle.
  • Identify the trigger points and pain referral patterns of the primary respiratory muscles.
  • Describe and demonstrate the postural patterns of inhalation and exhalation fixations, paradoxical/upper chest breathing, and belly breathing.
  • Define chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and name three types.
  • Define hyperventilation. Describe its symptoms and what to do when it occurs.

BONY LANDMARKS AND MUSCLES OF THE ANKLE AND FOOT

  • Name the 28 bones in the ankle and foot and describe the shape and location of each one.
  • Name three functional parts of the foot and the bones in each part.
  • List and demonstrate the palpation of seven bony landmarks of the ankle and foot.
  • List the major ligaments of the ankle and foot and describe their locations and functions.
  • List the three arches of the feet, identify their functions, and describe each one.
  • Name and describe five major ligaments that support the vault of the arches.
  • List the eight major joints of the foot and describe the structure and function of each one.
  • Identify the origins, insertions, and actions of extrinsic muscles of the ankle and foot.
  • Identify trigger points and pain referral patterns of extrinsic muscles of the ankle and foot.
  • Demonstrate the active movement and palpation of each extrinsic ankle and foot muscle.
  • Identify the origins, insertions, and actions of intrinsic muscles of the ankle and foot.
  • Identify trigger points and pain referral patterns of intrinsic muscles of the ankle and foot.
  • Demonstrate the active movement and palpation of each intrinsic muscle of the foot.

BONY LANDMARKS AND MUSCLES OF THE KNEE

  • Name the three bones of the knee.
  • List and demonstrate the palpation of 10 bony landmarks of the knee.
  • Describe the menisci and bursae in the knee.
  • Name and describe the two joints of the knee and seven supporting ligaments.
  • Describe patellar movement and problems that occur with poor patellar tracking.
  • Define the mechanical axis of the lower limb and the Q angle.
  • Describe the range of motion and joint mechanics of the tibiofemoral joint.
  • Name types of misalignments in the knee and describe the structural problems they cause.
  • Define and contrast axial rotation and terminal rotation of the knee.
  • Demonstrate the palpation of the menisci and prepatellar bursa of the knee.
  • Identify the origins, insertions, and actions of the knee flexors and extensors.
  • Identify the trigger points and pain referral patterns of the knee flexors and extensors.
  • Demonstrate the active movement and palpation of the knee flexors and extensors.

BONY LANDMARKS AND MUSCLES OF THE HIP AND PELVIS

  • Name the four bones of the hips and pelvis.
  • List and demonstrate the palpation of 14 bony landmarks of the hips and pelvis.
  • Describe the coxofemoral joint, its range of motion, and its supporting ligaments.
  • Describe the two femoral inclinations and how the shape of the femur creates each one.
  • Describe six ways the hip can move at the pelvis and six ways the pelvis can move on the femur.
  • Name three pelvic joints, their functions and classifications, and their ranges of motion.
  • Name and discuss four common hip problems.
  • Define the lumbar pelvic rhythm and describe efficient and inefficient rhythms.
  • Identify the origins, insertions, and actions of the muscles of the hips and pelvis.
  • Identify the trigger points and pain referral patterns of the muscles of the hips and pelvis.
  • Demonstrate the active movement and palpation of each muscle of the hips and pelvis.
  • Identify three perineal muscles and describe their general locations and functions.
  • Discuss the postural patterns that occur with chronically tight hamstrings or quadriceps.

BONY LANDMARKS AND MUSCLES OF THE SPINE

  • List the three parts of the spine and the number of vertebrae in each part.
  • Define and contrast kyphotic and lordotic curves and identify their locations in the spine.
  • Name and describe the typical features of a vertebra.
  • Demonstrate palpation of the spinal curves, spinous processes, and the lamina groove.
  • Name and describe the two types of spinal joints and their supporting ligaments.
  • Identify the normal range of motion in each part of the spine.
  • Identify the origins, insertions, and actions of the three layers of posterior spinal muscles.
  • Demonstrate the active movement and palpation of each posterior spinal muscle.
  • Identify the trigger points and pain referral patterns of the posterior spinal muscles.
  • Identify the origins, insertions, and actions of the abdominal muscles.
  • Demonstrate the active movement and palpation of each abdominal muscle.
  • Identify the trigger points and pain referral patterns of the abdominal muscles.

BONY LANDMARKS AND MUSCLES OF THE HEAD AND NECK

  • List eight cranial bones and 14 facial bones and describe the location of each one.
  • Name and describe three cartilaginous structures of the head and neck.
  • Describe the structure and function of the hyoid bone.
  • Demonstrate palpation of cranial and facial bones and miscellaneous structures of the neck.
  • List four cranial sutures, describe their locations, and demonstrate palpation of each one.
  • Describe the structure of the temporomandibular joint (TMJ) and its range of motion.
  • Describe the atlanto-axial and atlanto-occipital joints and their range of motion.
  • Identify the origins, insertions, and actions of the muscles of the head and neck.
  • Demonstrate the active movement and palpation of each muscle of the head and neck.
  • Identify the trigger points and pain referral patterns of the muscles of the head and neck.
  • Discuss the role of the facial muscles in emotional expression and describe each one

BONY LANDMARKS AND MUSCLES OF THE SHOULDER GIRDLE

  • List and describe the bony landmarks on the four bones making up the shoulder girdle.

Education and National Certifications

  • Students should have or be pursuing a high school diploma or GED.
  • There are no state approval and/or state requirements associated with this program.
  • There is a National Certification exam available to students who successfully complete this program:
    • Microsoft Office Specialist (MOS) Certification Exam.

National Certification

Upon successful completion of this Auburn University program, students would be eligible to sit for the Microsoft Office Specialist (MOS) exam. Although there are no state approval, state registration or other state requirements for this program, students who complete this program at Auburn University will be prepared and are eligible to sit for this national certification exam. Students who complete this program are encouraged to complete the externship option with their program. Students who complete this program can and do sit for the MOS national certification exams and are qualified, eligible and prepared to do so. Auburn University works with each student to complete the exam application and register the student to take their national certification exam.


Externship / Hands on Training / Practicum

Although not a requirement, once students complete the program, they have the ability to participate in an externship and/or hands on practicum so as to practice the skills necessary to perform the job requirements of a professional in this field. Students will be assisted with completing a resume and/or other requirements necessary to work in this field. All students who complete this program are eligible to participate in an externship and will be placed with a participating organization near their location. Auburn University works with national organizations and has the ability to place students in externship opportunities nationwide.