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About Specialties

The Athletic Trainer orthopedic specialty is exciting. And with even more specialties to come, so is the future.

With Athletic Trainers practicing their craft more and more in focused areas of practice that require specialized knowledge and skills, it only makes sense to follow the specialist paradigm created by other health care providers. That’s why the orthopedic specialty is only the beginning. We look forward to many more specialties to emerge in the coming years.

The ATC® credential represents significant knowledge, skill and commitment. Achieving a specialty credential is an additional way to signify both specialized focus and dedicated experience. The specialty rides alongside your Athletic Trainer credential providing you a one-two punch in competitive job markets.

What is a Specialty Certification?

BOC specialty certification is a voluntary process by which an Athletic Trainer earns formal recognition of their advanced education and experience within a specialized area of clinical practice.

Specialty certification identifies Athletic Trainers who have clinical practice abilities beyond the ATC® credential. These abilities will be identified via demonstration of post-professional education and training (e.g., CAATE-accredited residency and/or employment experience), and passage of a specialty certification exam. The specialty certification demonstrates an ability to enhance quality of patient care, optimize clinical outcomes, increase cost-effectiveness, provide value-based care, and improve patients’ health-related quality of life within a specialized area of athletic training practice.

Benefits of Specialty Certification:

  1. Quantifies an advanced level of skills and knowledge in a specific area of practice
  2. Improves quality of care
  3. Enhances clinical outcomes
  4. Improves patient’s quality of life

Specialty Council

The council’s charge is to guide the recognition and validation of athletic training specialties. The council also oversees the credentialing of Athletic Trainers who have demonstrated advanced knowledge, skills and abilities in the respective area of specialization.

The Specialty Council consists of seven members, along with liaisons from the National Athletic Trainers’ Association (NATA) staff, NATA Executive Committee for Education (ECE) and Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education (CAATE).

Specialty Council
Back row from left to right: Sidney Fuller, Russ Richardson, JJ Wetherington, Ken Rogers and Suzette Nynas.
Front row from left to right: Mary Beth Horodyski, Brandie Martin, Mike Hudson, Brian Farr and Bonnie Van Lunen.


Michael Hudson, PhD, ATC
Missouri State University


Brian Farr, MA, ATC, LAT, CSCS
The University of Texas at Austin
Suzette Nynas, EdD, ATC
Montana State University Billings

Kenneth Rogers, PhD, ATC
Russ Richardson, EdD, ATC/L
National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics

Brandie Martin, MS, ATC, OTC
The Steadman Clinic
Jefferson (JJ) Wetherington, MS, LAT, ATC
St. Luke’s Sports Medicine


Stacy Arrington
Brian Vesci, DAT, ATC
ECE Chair

Sidney Fuller
Bonnie Van Lunen, PhD, ATC
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