1. What are the qualifications of an Athletic Therapist?
All professional members of the Canadican Athletic Therapy Association have passed university and college courses specified by the CATA. After having completed an internship (1200 hours) comprised of both clinical and fieldwork, a stringent written and practical set of national exams must also be successfully completed.
Certified Athletic Therapists participate in an annual mandatory maintenance of certification program. This ensures that all Athletic Therapists demonstrate that they continually remain current with the developments in their professional field. Athletic Therapy is one of the very few Canadian health care professions that require annual professional development of its members! The national and provincial chapters work together to oversee the certification process, the continuing education, and professional development of its members. The CATA is a leader in an active approach to health care in Canada and over the years, has gained credibility and professional status while becoming widely recognized throughout the health care community.
2. What type of care do Certified Athletic Therapists provide?
Certified Athletic Therapists create/implement and facilitate individualized treatment plans for optimal recovery, rehabilitation and for everyday maintenance. Your therapist will accomplish this by utilizing contemporary rehabilitation techniques as seen fit. These techniques may include, but are not limited to; soft tissue release, joint mobilizations, muscle reconditioning, and exercise prescription/rehabilitation.
A key philosophy and component of rehabilitation at Omni Rehab is patient education. Proper awareness and understanding of the injury, treatments, rehabilitation process, and preventative measures of how to avoid reoccurrence of injury is crucial for a quick and successful return to your normal activities of daily life.
3. How is Athletic Therapy different from Physiotherapy?
There are many similarities between Physiotherapists and Athletic Therapists when it comes to orthopaedic (musculoskeletal and biomechanical) assessments in the clinical setting. It is largely in the treatment styles and varying work environments in which we differ.Certified Athletic Therapists specialize in musculoskeletal assessment and rehabilitation of all physical injuries as well as sport specific exercise rehabilitation. Athletic Therapy is based on the sports medicine model of rehabilitation which aims to not only get you back from injury as quickly and as safely as possible, but also to make you stronger than you were prior to injury.
4. Who can benefit from Athletic Therapy? Do I need to be an Athlete?
Everyone can benefit!! And you most definitely do not need to be an athlete!
Other than the athletic population, athletic therapy can also be beneficial to those suffering from all forms of aches, pains or biomechanical disadvantages. An athletic therapist most typically treats:
Chronic or acute back and neck pain
Motor vehicle injuries (ICBC)
Repetitive strain injuries
Pre and post surgery conditions
If you have an ache or a pain, an Athletic Therapist will assess your condition and provide the best care for your specific injury. Athletic Therapists are determined to return patients to work or play in better condition than they were prior to their injury. Whether you have an injury or want to prevent an injury from occurring, an Athletic Therapist can help.
For somebody who is already suffering from an injury a traditional rehabilitation approach will take place. For the individual who is interested in prevention, activity-specific training, postural correction or improving mechanics may be the best approach.
5. Is Athletic Therapy covered by my insurance provider?
The following Insurance Companies accept billing for Athletic Therapy. Each individual policy will vary, so you may need to look into your individual insurance plan. Although an insurance provider may offer Athletic Therapy as an option, the plan will be dependant on what services the employer has selected for their employees benefit package.
• Allsport Insurance Marketing
• BC Hockey Association
• Canada Life Assurance Company
• Citadel Assurance
• The Co-Operators
• Desjardins Financial Security
• The Economical Insurance Group
• Equitable Life of Canada
• Great West Life Assurance Company
• Industrial- Alliance Pacific
• Liberty Health
• Manulife Financial
• Premier Life Insurance Company
• Reliable Life Insurance Company
• Standard Life
• Sun Life Financial
• Wawanesa Life
You may find an updated list of insurance providers at the Athletic Therapist Association of British Columbia:
6. Please explain when and how I pay for my treatments.
Omni Rehab accepts most methods of payment (MC, Visa, Debit, Cash, Cheque). We do not currently direct bill to your insurance company therefore, payment must be made a time of service. Receipts are provided for the patient to arrange reimbursement.
If you are being seen following a motor vehicle accident we may be allowed to direct bill your insurance company for your treatments. Athletic Therapy is covered under Section B.
7. Do I need a doctor’s referral?
No you do not need a doctor’s referral; however some insurance companies may require a doctor’s referral in order to reimburse you for any costs incurred.
8. What might an initial appointment/assessment entail and how long might it take?
comprehensive verbal history
developing goals and expectations
visual movement screen (including observing postural alignment, gait, and any signs of any tissue distress)
full orthopaedic assessment (observing/testing and comparing range of motion, flexibility, strength, special/functional tests for differential diagnosis
palpation of surface anatomy
development/execution of a plan of action to determine the best course of action for treatment
developing/implementing a home program
Initial assessments could take 45-60min
9. What should I wear?
Loose comfortable clothing is recommended for the visits. You may be required to perform certain exercises or stretches that would be limited by tight clothing. We do have a full shower and changing room available if needed.