The Complete Student-Athlete Experience: Medical and Athletic Training

Our goal is to fund the complete student-athlete experience. Contributors to the I-Club fund scholarships, team travel, medical and athletic training, equipment and uniforms, academic services, nutrition, and strength and conditioning.  Your gifts enable us to provide the best possible experience for our student-athletes.

During the 2015-16 athletics year, we will highlight the seven areas that make up I-Club members' investment in the complete Hawkeye student-athlete experience.

Medical and Athletic Training: An average of $3,374 is spent per year, per student-athlete, on medical and athletic training. 

Success for our 24 Hawkeye sports teams is a total team effort. Student-athletes play an obvious part in the success, but the medical staff -- certified athletic trainers, graduate assistant athletic trainers, physical therapists, and undergraduate athletic training students -- ensures our student-athletes are healthy and safe during competitions.

The 60 members of the UI sports medical staff—who are nationally ranked experts in bone, joint, and muscle disorders—not only help student-athletes recover from their injuries on the playing field, but they also help ensure a healthy and vibrant future for student-athletes long after their college careers are done.

“Because of the support from countless contributors, our student-athletes receive the best care, no matter what is necessary,” said Terry Noonan, program manager for UI athletic training.

Ally Disterhoft, an Academic All-American on the women’s basketball team, understands the importance of a premier medical staff. Disterhoft suffered a wrist injury last year during Iowa’s Sweet 16 season.

“I cannot say enough about the quality and commitment of the athletic training staff here at Iowa,” said Disterhoft. “They have not only helped me become the best athlete I can be, but at the same time, they have successfully guided my recovery from a serious wrist injury.”

Mike Gesell, a fellow Academic All-American on the men’s basketball team, echoed those sentiments.

“One of the most over looked, yet most important parts of preparation, is rest and recovery,” said Gesell. “At this level you have to be getting better every day and you cannot do that unless you are healthy and fresh. Here at Iowa, we have one of the best athletic training staffs in the country and they are the reason we can go to battle and get better every single day.”

Individuals like Mark Kaufman (1986 B.S.) understand the importance of keeping student-athletes healthy. As the founder of Athletico Physical Therapy, he helps those who need physical, industrial, and hand therapy, as well as provides athletic training services. Instead of becoming a history teacher as planned, Kaufman majored in physical education and focused on athletic training, thanks in part to Danny T. Foster, director of athletic training education in the UI Department of Health and Human Physiology.

Because of Foster and the work of his program, Mark Kaufman and his wife, Mary Ann, made a $500,000 gift in 2005 to establish an endowed fellowship in the UI Athletic Training Education Program. This year, the couple pledged $1 million to transform the fellowship into the Danny T. Foster Partnership in Athletic Training Education.

Whether it’s transformational gifts from individuals such as the Kaufmans or annual support from our more than 17,000 I-Club members, Noonan and his medical and athletic training staff are able to keep Our Hawkeyes healthy and safe.

“There are a lot of things that are special about the UI and its athletic training department,” Kaufman said. “I asked what I could do to solidify the future of the program, and we were prepared to help however possible.”

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