By the Division of Professional Licensure

4.01: Definitions

Accredited Educational Program. An athletic trainer educational program accredited by JRC-AT.

Approved Educational Program. Athletic trainer educational programs approved by the NATA Professional Education Committee.

Athlete. An individual who prepares for or participates in sports activities.

CAAHEP. Committee on Accreditation for Allied Health Education Programs, which grants accreditation to educational programs for the athletic trainer.

Course. The instruction or teaching of appropriate athletic training knowledge or skills in a structured classroom environment. Academic credit of at least three semester or four quarter hours at the undergraduate or graduate level must be assigned.

Conditioning. Programs designed to enhance athletic performance or physical fitness in, but not limited to, the following areas: cardiorespiratory endurance, flexibility, muscular endurance, neuromuscular coordination and strength.

Dentist. A licensed practitioner of dentistry, who is identified by the initials DDS or DMD.

Direction. The prescription, definition or order of a plan of care by a physician or dentist.

Discretion. A directing physician or dentist may permit the athletic trainer to render the following services:

(a) Initiate injury recognition procedures and management techniques for athletic injuries and/or conditions that effect athletic performance.

(b) Plan, implement, evaluate and modify appropriate pre-conditioning, conditioning and re-conditioning programs for athletes utilizing, but not limited, to the physical modalities described in M.G.L. c. 112, § 23A.

(c) Apply adhesive tape, elastic tape, protective devices, corrective devices, temporary splints, elastic bandages and other supplies for the prevention and/or treatment of athletic injuries.

(d) Design, construct and apply protective padding and supportive devices for the protection of soft tissue injuries.

NATA. National Athletic Trainers Association, Inc.

NATABOC. National Athletic Trainers Association Board of Certification, Inc. The administratively independent agency which sets and establishes entry level certification requirements and maintains continuing educational requirements for athletic trainers.

NATABOC Certification. The certification granted by NATABOC based on the achievement of a passing score on the national certification examination for entry level practitioners of athletic training.

Physician. A licensed practitioner of medicine, who is identified by the initials MD or DO.

Pre-conditioning. The preparatory conditioning programs which an athletic trainer utilizes to improve an athlete's fitness and performance.

Re-conditioning. The process of restoration of an athlete's injured body to a level of fitness that enables safes sports participation.

Team/Organization. Any group which sponsors athletic participation.


4.02: Rules

(1) The athletic trainer practices in accordance with the standards described in M.G.L c. 112, § 23A. The physical presence of a directing physician or dentist is not required.

(2) The athletic trainer, except in life-threatening emergencies and when no physician or dentist is available, advises an athlete that he is not a physician or dentist and that an athletic trainer renders athletic training services only under the direction of physician or dentist.

(3) The athletic trainer will provide to the directing physician or dentist the historical and physical data of an athlete in a timely manner.

(4) In an emergency, the athletic trainer renders emergency care necessary to avoid disability or death of an injured athlete until a transfer of medical responsibility is made to a directing physician or dentist or to recognized emergency medical services which have been summoned for such purpose by the athletic trainer.

(5) No person may use in connection with her name or place of business the letters "A.T.", "A.T.C.", "L.A.T.", "L.A.T.C.", "Athletic Therapist", "Athletic Trainer", "Licensed Athletic Trainer", or "Licensed Athletic Therapist" when such person has not been duly licensed by the Board.

(6) The ethical standards of practice shall be the Code of Ethics of NATA and Standards of Practice of NATABOC, as the same may be amended and republished. The Board may, whenever appropriate, consider other standards of practice or conduct for approval.


4.03: Licensure of Athletic Trainers

(1) An applicant for licensure as an athletic trainer shall:

(a) be a graduate of a NATA approved or CAAHEP accredited athletic training education program approved by the Board; or

(b) be a graduate of other program of study deemed acceptable by the Board; AND

(c) have successfully passed a certification examination approved by NATABOC and the Board.

(2) An applicant for licensure as an athletic trainer who is a graduate of a program of study deemed acceptable by the Board must demonstrate at the time of application successful completion of at least one course in EACH of the following areas of athletic trainer education:


Prevention of Athletic Injuries/Illnesses
Evaluation of Athletic Injuries/Illnesses
Therapeutic Modalities
Therapeutic Exercise
Administration of Athletic Training Programs
Human Anatomy
Human Physiology
Exercise Physiology
Personal/Community Health
Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation - Current American Red Cross or American Heart Association certificate
First Aid - Current American Red Cross or equivalent certificate or advanced emergency care certificate (Emergency Medical Technician)

(3) EFFECTIVE JANUARY 1, 1998, those programs of study which are not approved by NATA or accredited by CAAHEP will not be accepted by the Board for licensure as an athletic trainer. Any applicant who is a graduate of a program that is not approved by NATA or accredited by CAAHEP, who files an application for licensure after January 1, 1998 will not be approved for licensure by the Board. 259 CMR 4.03(3) shall not apply to applicants who are currently NATABOC certified.

(4) License Renewal. To renew an athletic training license, a licensee must verify to the Board:

(a) current CPR certification; and
(b) current NATABOC certification.


259 CMR 4.00: M.G.L. c. 112, § 23M.