Exciting Developments in the Athletic Therapy Profession

Athletic Rehabilitation Therapy Ireland are pleased to announce that the ARTI membership has overwhelmingly voted to change the name of our membership to Certified Athletic Therapists (CAT). A quorum was reached and 97% of voters agreed that the term Athletic Therapy will be now adopted to describe the profession of members of ARTI. Unlike other professional bodies, there is an entrance exam to ensure the high standard of skill, knowledge and proficiency of ARTI members. Therefore, to reflect this, the term Certified Athletic Therapist will be used to distinguish members of ARTI and they will use the postnominal initials CAT. At this critical junction for the Athletic Therapy profession both nationally and internationally, this strategic name change will align Irish Certified Athletic Therapists with global terminology.
This name change was ratified by the ARTI executive at their most recent board meeting and the ARTI executive encourage all our members to use the term Certified Athletic Therapist and Athletic Therapy in all promotional material, websites and credentialing.

Mr Andrew Watson, ARTI President, stated
“I am delighted to announce this significant title change for ARTI members. The fact that our members voted so strongly indicated the need for a title that is not only in keeping with our international partners in other nations but also clearer for the public to understand.”
This name change was ratified by the ARTI executive at their most recent board meeting and the ARTI executive encourage all our members to use the term Certified Athletic Therapist and Athletic Therapy in all promotional material, websites and credentialing.

“Please use Certified Athletic Therapist (CAT) in all your professional dealings and ARTI will ensure to continue to promote and support our highly skilled members.”

Thank you to all our members for voting.

ARTI are proud members of the World Federation of Athletic Training and Therapy (WFATT)

ARTI are now proud members of WFATT. WFATT works to achieve international recognition for Athletic Therapy and Training as “an essential part of multidisciplinary healthcare teams”.

WFATT leads us in advancing the international interests of its members for the common goal of optimal health care for physically active populations.

World Federation of Athletic Therapy and Training (WFATT) holds an annual World Congress to promote its vision, network and discuss new and upcoming research. Official representatives from all associated members attend and all members are encouraged to attend – http://www.wfatt.org/world-congress

Explore our association with WFATT – http://www.wfatt.org/member-associations

The SSE Airtricity Dublin City Marathon 2018 has been and gone!

The SSE Airtricty Dublin City Marathon 2018 was a great success!

This was an important year for ARTI as it was the first year Certified Athletic and Rehabilitation Therapists (ARTC) were involved in supporting the health and safety of the athletes taking part in the Dublin City Marathon. Both qualified and student ARTI members were invited to assist at the event. ARTCs were responsible for the provision of emergency care and management of acute injuries and illnesses. In a great example of the importance and benefits of multi-disciplinary care, each ARTC was allocated a Medical Tent, where they treated casualties along with  a nurse and a medical doctor. During the event, they dealt with patients with issues such as hypothermia, cramps, psychogenic shock, exhaustion and many musculoskeletal injuries.

ARTCs proved to be a very successful addition to the Dublin City Marathon Medical Team. Owen Feeney ARTC who worked at the event thoroughly enjoyed the expierence and the coollaboartion with a multi-disciplinary medical team.

“Getting to interact with the other therapists and medical staff was a unique experience. It was very well organized and I hope to be a part of the event again next year”.

The student ARTI members involved in the event also gained great expierence. Kirsty Mc Ilwaine, a third year student of Dublin City University’s BSc in Athletic Therapy and Training remarked:

“I enjoyed the event. The exposure I got far outweighed the demanding nature of the work. It was a great environment to put our Emergency First Responder skills into practice which was very rewarding. It gave us a good insight into my future  role as a Certified Athletic and Rehabilitation Therapist.”

We look forward to this being an annual event for ARTCs moving forward. Thank you to Dr. May Tan, the Medical Director of the Dublin Marathon and the Race Series, and thanks to all ARTI representatives who attended.

Owen Feeney ARTC is up and running

This week ARTI is chatting to Owen Feeney ARTC, a recent graduate of the BSc in Athletic Therapy and Training programme in DCU. Owen set up his own clinic in January 2018, just a few months after graduating.

Owen is based in UrbanHealth, Ranelagh for the last 5 months. “The space is open plan and shared between various therapists and instructors, including myself. Equipment and gear is brought in prior to each session and is often shared which is helpful, especially when starting off. It helps to keep initial costs to a minimum.”

Owen treats a mixture of patients, many of them coming from teams he works with. “The majority of my clients are athletes from the teams I work with.  Time constraints mean I don’t get to treat everyone on match days. I also see individuals from gyms who often have issues from overuse, impeding their return to full activity. I treat office workers whose issues arise from a lack of activity or repetitive daily actions that cause them issues. The treatments are often quite different which makes it interesting and challenging.”

Owen shared some advice with us on important things to consider when setting up on your own. Owen believes the location of your clinic is key when considering setting up on your own. “Take your time making this decision as it will influence business. Thankfully for ARTCs, we don’t need a huge workspace and we can do a lot with a little when it comes to equipment.”

“One of the things I would never have considered before finishing college would be how to sell yourself and advertise as well. Be it social media, business cards or flyers you should consider how to advertise optimally”.

Planning is important but don’t give up at the first hurdle. “You will do things right and wrong and it will take time before you understand the business side of it.  I haven’t completed a business degree, so it will take time and research. Seeking advice from someone with a business or marketing background may really help. I was lucky enough to have such a person and honestly, I wouldn’t have thought about half of the things I needed without their help. It is ok to ask for help and ask for advice, you’re only fresh out of college, no one expects us to be the Bill Gates of the ARTC world so don’t put too much pressure on yourself.

Owen highlighted the importance of maintaining involvement in pitch side work.  “Getting involved with a sports team will help with spreading your name and building a client base.

Pitch side and clinic-based rely on the same body of knowledge yet are so vastly different.  Working in both environments, you learn that one compliments the other.  I think it would be best to think of one as an extension of the other.

Thanks to Owen for his time and advice. You can contact Owen directly on

0857315944 or owenfeeneyat@gmail.com, or on his website


Hannah Tallon ARTC gets hands on

This week ARTI is chatting to Hannah Tallon ARTC, a recent graduate of the BSc in Athletic Therapy and Training programme in DCU. Hannah began working in her own clinic very soon after graduation.

Hannah is based in KLeisure Gym, Naas, Co.Kildare where she treats a variety of demographics, both athletic and general. “I’m really enjoying the challenge that is working on my own. It’s great to put the knowledge and practical skills to use as soon as you can after college. Certainly, it’s a learning curve for me. I love meeting new people and new problems daily. It keeps me interested and constantly learning”

Following her degree, Hannah completed a course in dry needling which she says is very effective and popular with clients. “Dry needling is a very effective drug free pain relief to offer clients. In my experience it can offer immediate and long-lasting relief. It’s definitely a good idea to build on the skills you learn in college.  It’s important to keep investing in your education.”

Hannah chose to work in a clinical setting because she enjoys the one-on-one encounter. “I enjoy the client-clinician dynamic and the work itself can be very rewarding.” Hannah agrees setting up on your own can be a daunting prospect but assures that it is worth it in so many ways. “Only a few months along in my career, I would advise anyone considering taking a similar route, to jump in with two feet and go for it. Nothing ventured, nothing gained. I’m grateful that I got the opportunity to give it a go at least.”

Hannah gave some advice on setting up your own clinic as a new graduate. Setting up in a gym is a good starting point for new graduates as it requires very little alteration before you get going. It will already have parking, toilets, changing rooms etc, not to mention footfall! Many of Hannah’s clients are gym members. “Not having to find clients allows me to focus on my work more.”

“At the start, you can be very excited about it all and take on a bit too much. Be aware that there is an adjustment period so allow yourself to get used to it before you give up on it.” It takes time to get into a routine. Rest becomes as important as work, otherwise the standard of work will inevitably fall.

Hannah highlighted the importance of confidence early in your career. “It’s important to realize the skills you have when leaving college and take confidence in the practitioner you already are. You will always have a lot to learn and working on your own makes you learn that bit quicker – why not start now?”

Thanks to Hannah for giving her time to discuss her new clinic. You can contact Hannah on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/HTmusculoskeletaltherapy/ or book an appointment with her on 0894072263.

ARTI Student Information Evening in DCU

ARTI Student Information Evening in DCU

Dublin City University hosted our inaugural ARTI Student Information Evening recently. The evening, organised by our Education Committee was a great success in helping students gain an insight into what to expect following graduation. Hazel Cooney, ARTI Education Committee member and DCU graduate organised the evening.

“ARTCs experience a huge learning curve following graduation. ARTCs have to quickly learn to promote ARTI in order to promote themselves. Very often to work as an ARTC you need to pursue self-employment and I think that this is an option that students may find daunting.”

The evening was designed to educate students about ARTI, employment opportunities and further education options open for to our ARTCs. Five ARTCs who were all past graduates of the DCU ATT programme spoke to the students. Four video presentations from ARTCs that couldn’t make it on the night also featured.

From the evenings presentations, it is apparent that ARTCs are working as an inherent part of multi- disciplinary teams in professional and high level amateur sports throughout Ireland and abroad. A number of graduates have pursued self-employment, and it was clear that they had become quite successful running their own businesses. ARTCs are becoming more widely recognised in the community by the general public and other health professionals. This seems to have been mainly achieved through networking and involvement in community events. Many students have also decided to pursue further education including medicine, physiotherapy, and research degrees and highlighted the value of maintaining their affiliation with ARTI as they consider it an asset to their future career prospects.

“The speakers discussed practical real-world perspectives into the workings of ARTI and daily life as an ARTC and really highlighted the importance of networking, professionalism, and having a strong work ethic”

The DCU students found the event inspiring and the ARTI Education Committee plan to host similar evenings in Athlone IT and IT Carlow in the comings months.

Thanks to Hazel Cooney ARTC for organising the night and our speakers, Ciara Mulrooney ARTC, Sam Rice ARTC, Aoife Burke ARTC, James Storm ARTC, Karen McCann ARTC
for their helpful practical tips and insights to our student members. Thanks to Emma Doherty ARTC, Ciaran Nannery ARTC, Eadaoin Holland ARTC and Laura Langton ARTC for sharing their video presentations in their absence.

Dr.Siobhan O’Connor M.Sc., Ph.D., ARTC has been ratified as Vice President of WFATT!

CONGRATULATIONS to Dr. Siobhan O’Connor  M.Sc., Ph.D., ARTC who has been newly ratified as the Vice President of the World Federation of Athletic Therapy. This is a fantastic achievement and we are so lucky to have an ARTI member holding such a prestigious position. We wish Siobhan the very best of luck! Onwards and upwards! Follow this link for more info http://www.wfatt.org/ 

Conor McIlwaine ARTC takes a spin abroad

 Conor McIllwaine ARTC working alongside the Cycling Ulster Senior Men’s team at “L’estivale Bretonne 2017′ in Brittany, France.

ARTI Member Conor Mc Ilwaine has been working with Cycling Ulster teams for the last two years and has traveled around Ireland and across the water to Wales and France.

Tell us about your recent work as an ARTC

I have been lucky enough to work alongside some of Ireland’s most talented athletes with Cycling Ulster. Many of the races were internationally renowned, such as ‘Ras na mBan’, a 5-day International Women’s Stage Race held in Kilkenny, and the ‘Junior Tour of Wales.’ ‘Travelling with the teams is definitely a perk of the job. It has allowed me to see some beautiful parts of the world’

What are your responsibilities when working with a cycling team?

In the cycling world the role is called ‘Soigneur’, which is French for helper/trainer. My responsibilities included: looking after the riders’ nutrition on and off the bike. This involved a feeding during the stage and examining and treating any injuries. In this role, you see a range of injuries from chronic injuries like lower back pain or overuse knee issues to injuries to acute injuries such as wrist sprains/breaks occurring during crashes. We also see more race day issues like bad road rash etc.

Did you manage any road crashes?

I have managed plenty of road crashes. In the cycling world, these are just so common particularly in stage races. Some can be difficult to manage in that they cover such a large area, and they can be nasty. The main thing is just to avoid infection at all costs. Making sure dressings are changed frequently and wounds kept clean is essential. Simple tips like vaseline and cling film at night to stop from sticking to the bedsheets is a simple trick of the trade.

Do you have any advice for ARTCs looking to get involved in the cycling community?

Well first things first I wouldn’t get involved at all if you don’t want to work hard. Working with cycling teams is quite taxing! You cover all the needs of the cyclists and not just massage and recovery. It is an exciting environment to be part of, from navigating your way to feed zones in the French countryside, dressing wounds and treating chronic injuries to buttering bread rolls in the back of the team van. As you can imagine, it can get quite busy. All in, a fantastic experience for anyone keen on traveling.

You’ve just returned from Rotterdam. How was that experience? How did working with Triathletes compare to working with just cyclists?

Rotterdam was a magnificent experience. The trip was just so relaxing. The high-octane paceh!! With regard to racing, the level was just so high, even though the weather was awful. I have a new-found respect for triathletes and there exceptional bike handling skills in the greasy, wet cobbles of Rotterdam. All in it was one of the best experiences I have had working with a team so far. The professionalism of Triathlon Ireland, meant that everything ran so smoothly. It was a fantastic opportunity for me to be involved in such a professional set-up. of cycling races couldn’t have differed more from the relaxed and focused triathlon approach. I even managed to get to see some of Rotterdam, provided I woke early enough!! Regarding racing, the level was just so high, even though the weather was awful. I have a new-found respect for triathletes and their exceptional bike handling skills in the greasy, wet cobbles of Rotterdam. All in it was one of the best experiences I have had working with a team so far. The professionalism of Triathlon Ireland, meant that everything ran so smoothly. It was a fantastic opportunity for me to be involved in such a professional set-up.