Athletic Training

Wallace State – Cullman Area Career Awareness Fair 2017


Wallace State Community College and Cullman Area Chamber of Commerce invited 8th Grade Students from across the Greater Cullman area to come explore hands-on a variety of careers and professions at the Cullman Area Career Awareness Fair on November 7, 2017. Almost 1,000 students attended the event held at Wallace State in Hanceville, Alabama.

Cullman Career Awareness Fair

Sharing their passion for athletic training and rehabilitation are Encore Rehabilitation Athletic Trainers l-r: Gage Brewer; Dewayne Fortenberry; Adrianne Borland; and Jessica Burnetti with Occupational Therapy Assistant Leslie Perry. Also representing Encore Rehabilitation at the event were Adrian Dickerson and Bo Shirey.

Encore Rehabilitation, Inc. was proud to share the fields of Athletic Training-Sports Medicine, Physical Therapy, and Occupational Therapy. Encore Rehabilitation Athletic Trainers worked with students to teach the proper way to place an individual onto a spine board when there is a suspected neck or spine injury. The Athletic Trainers also  discussed the need for taping in sports and activities to provide greater stability and prevent injury and some students received a taping to their ankle. Therapists were on hand to share how physical therapy and occupational therapy can help individuals recovering from an accident, injury or illness.

Best of success to all of the students in attendance!


Gulf Shores High School’s AD thanks Encore ATCs, Camille Forte and Lee Steiner.

“A high school parent returned some crutches to me that their son had to use after he injured his hip.  He really was appreciative of [our ATC] Camille Forte and the way she not only took care of his son, but also the way she handled the situation and relayed information to him.  He also expressed his thankfulness to the fact that we have a sports medicine team in place here and how well it worked.  I would also like to brag on Camille and the job she is doing and show my appreciation to her, Lee, Encore and the orthopedic group/Doctors for what we have in place.  I can still remember when us coaches did all the sports medicine routines-

Let’s just say we are in much better hands now!”

Jamie W. Williams 

Athletic Director and Head Football Coach at Gulf Shores High School

Arab Encore Athlete of the Month, James King.

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Congratulations to the Arab Encore Athlete of the Month, James King! James is a Senior, multi-sport athlete at Brindlee Mountain High School in Guntersville, AL. He is a member of the football, basketball, golf, and track teams. James has played on varsity for 4 years and wears jersey number 55. He has qualified for the sub-state award in golf and plans to attend Missouri Valley College on golf scholarship while pursuing a degree in Athletic Training. James is the son of Todd King and Michelle Franks.

Fayette Encore Athlete of the Month, Sarah Ellison

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Congratulations to the Fayette Encore Athlete of the Month, Sarah Ellison! Sarah is a Freshman athlete at Fayette County High School.  She is a member of the Tigers Varsity Volleyball team and wears jersey #22. She currently has a 3.9 GPA and plans to attend the University of West Alabama and pursue a career in Athletic Training. Sara is the daughter of Danny and Tracy Ellison.

Keep up the good work, Sarah!

Monroeville Encore Athlete of the Month, Shawn White.

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Congratulations to the Monroeville Clinic Athlete of the Month, Shawn White! Shawn is a senior and multi-sport athlete from Excel High School. He has played varsity football, basketball, and baseball for the Panthers for 4 years. Shawn has won the All County Football award and the Cy Young baseball award for best pitcher.

Shawn has been visiting us for therapy from his ACL reconstruction. Below is a video of Shawn using the Biodex Isokinetic Machine. He will be back in the game in no time! Keep up the good work, Shawn!

Shawn White

“What should I eat for pre-game fuel?” We’ve got the solution.

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“So you’ve practiced hard all week.  You’ve hydrated and ate your pre-game meal 3-4 hours before kickoff.  But right before you go out for pregame warm-ups, your stomach is telling you it needs more fuel.  Keep it small and light.  1 hour prior to kickoff, eat 1-2 granola bars or a sports bar along with 1-2 cups of water or sports drink.  Find a bar high in carbohydrates (at least 20-30 grams) and light to moderate in protein (2-10 grams).  The carbs will give you the energy you need while the protein will satisfy your hunger but without giving you that full feeling.”

– Eric Oehms, Encore ATC

We are excited to be partnering with Alabama Soccer!

Alabama Soccer Association



Birmingham, Alabama —  The Alabama Soccer Association is proud to announce a new partnership with Encore Rehabilitation, that will increase sports medicine coverage for ASA athletes.

Under this partnership, Encore will provide on-site athletic trainers at all ASA events, as well as extensive performance and injury reduction for coaches and players.encore_225x225

“We are thrilled to team up with Encore Rehabilitation. Player safety is of the utmost importance and Encore Rehabilitation delivers on that mission to keep players healthy and able to continue in their sports successfully,” says Tom Condone, Executive Director of the Alabama Soccer Association.

Alabama Soccer Association is the state’s largest soccer organization and governing body for youth soccer in Alabama on behalf of the United States Soccer Federation (USSF).

“Encore is extremely proud to partner with the Alabama Soccer Association, not only to provide athletic training coverage to ensure the highest quality care possible for all injured players at ASA events, but also provide educational content on how to keep the athletes healthy and reduce the risk of injury.  The goal of this comprehensive program is to ultimately keep all players injury free and safe, so they can concentrate on reaching their peak potential,” says Marc Bernier, Clinical Director of Sports Medicine.

To learn more, visit

About Alabama Soccer Association

As the Alabama affiliate of US Soccer and US Youth Soccer, the Alabama Soccer Association (ASA) is a non-profit and educational organization whose mission is to foster the physical, mental, and emotional growth of players of all ages, by creating and increasing opportunities for wholesome participation. ASA has a current membership of over 15,000 registered players statewide, youth and adult, and approximately 2,000 active coaches, referees, and administrators. For more information, please visit

About Encore Rehabilitation

About Encore Rehabilitation, Inc. – Encore Rehabilitation, headquartered in Decatur, AL is one of the nation premier rehabilitation, fitness and sports enhance companies. Encore rehabilitation division specializes in state-of-the-art physical therapy, occupational therapy, and speech therapy. Encore is also the exclusive sports medicine provider for the Alabama High School Athletic Association. For more information, please visit


“What’s in my bag” Encore ATC edition.

Almost everyone has heard about the Us Weekly “Whats in my bag” survey they give to the celebs every month. We thought it would be fun to ask a few of our ATCs what all they carried in their bags. Knowing we would get a few funny answers, we decided to share them with you, and here are a few of our favorites answers!

Do you carry a bag or fanny pack? 

We got anything from sling pack, to messenger bags, to rolling (splint) kits.

What brand is your bag/fp? 

Muller, Cramer, MedPac, Medco, Alert Service, and our favorite… The Bushwalker.

Do you ever carry food/drinks with you?

Gum and mints (we all need them sometimes), BBQ Sunflower seeds (exclusively said from the softball/baseball ATCs), peppermint, 20oz Diet Coke, peanut butter crackers (more protein), and Mt. Dew.

Ever found anything you forgot you had in your bag?

Candy that students give out, earrings, tampons, and Fungo athletes foot spray.

Name one, or a few things, others wouldn’t expect you to carry with you. 

Battery powered drill, 6 foot water hose, Benchmade rescue hook cutter, “female products” (very smart), tiger tail, helmet face-mask removal, scalpel, hemorrhoid cream, razor, chapstick, hairspray, sewing kit, and the news paper (why not?).

After reading all of the answers that were submitted, we have decided that ATCs are like the Marry Poppins of the sport’s world, and we don’t know what we would do without them!

encore rehab

What is Encore about?


Encore Rehabilitation, Inc. is one of America’s most diversified rehabilitation providers. It began with two University of South Alabama classmates in the physical therapy program who visualized a rehabilitation company that would provide exceptional physical therapy services and expand their roles as healthcare providers to a national level.

Under the partnership of Paul G. Henderson, PT and Paige B. Plash, PT, Encore Rehab was founded in 1981 and delivers the best rehabilitation services to thousands of patients daily in locations throughout Alabama and Mississippi. Encore Rehab is an employee-focused company with a tremendous team of dedicated and experienced employees who understand the many environments in which a therapist can provide treatment. Through the company’s specialized divisions, Encore Rehab provides rehabilitation services of unsurpassed quality that help patients return to a healthier lifestyle.

  • Encore Rehab focuses on providing services in outpatient clinics, but also offers contract services for healthcare facilities, nursing facilities, schools, businesses, and many other settings.


“Overtraining and Injury in Youth Athletics”

By Marc Bernier, MPT CSCS

 The environment of youth athletics has undergone a major transformation over the past several years, most notably in the manner in which kids train for their respective sports.  Unfortunately, the changes that have occurred are not always necessarily for the better, as the injury rates in youth athletics are increasing, as are the severity of injuries.

One potential cause for these increasing injury rates that has been identified by medical professionals is overtraining.  There are many factors that can play into overtraining; however, there are 2 components that are particularly concerning:

  1. Specialization” in a single sport during the early childhood years.
  2. Failure to provide adequate recovery from the physical stress of the sport season.

In all actuality, these two factors are actually closely intertwined.  In today’s competitive climate of youth athletics, many kids are pushed towards dedicating themselves exclusively to one sport at a young age, with the thought being that the more training they get in that specific sport, the more they will excel (this thought actually goes against the recommendations of the top sports performance enhancement specialists who promote the idea of youth athletes being encouraged to compete in multiple sports until their freshman or sophomore year in high school, at which time specialization is more appropriate).  As a result, sports such as soccer become a year long endeavor, in which kids are playing the same sport for 10-11 months of the year (it may take slightly different forms, such as outdoor, indoor, etc).  Unfortunately, this is a faulty approach for two reasons:

1. By participating in the same sport throughout the year, the same repetitive physical stresses are placed on the relatively fragile growth plates and soft tissue structures (muscles, tendons, ligaments), resulting in overuse injuries.

2. Participation in a single sport can limit the overall athletic development of kids.  All sports have unique skills and movements that require the development and utilization of different muscle groups, and in vastly different ways.  This is especially true for the core and trunk muscles; participation in “upper extremity” sports such as baseball, tennis and basketball will train the core in a much different manner than “lower extremity” sports such as soccer.  It has been theorized that playing in multiple sports may actually increase kids’ overall athleticism and make them “better” athletes.

Simply put, we do not provide our kids enough time to rest, nor allow their joints enough time to recover from the physical stresses their bodies endure during a season (not to mention the fact that kids today typically train harder and more frequently than current adults did in their childhood).  Recovery time is absolutely essential for athletic growth; without it, the structures of the body are continually broken down, inhibiting strength and endurance potential, and ultimately athletic potential.

In an ideal scenario, children should have a two week period after the season is completed of minimal activity.  After that has passed, participation in a different sport is acceptable, as that sport will not have the same physical stresses, and will be less traumatic to the joints of kids.  If a child does not participate in another sport, some form of cross training can be performed to maintain baseline fitness levels.  Some recommended activities would include: cardio workouts on stationary bikes, stairsteppers or elliptical machines; swimming; pick up basketball; or simple jogging.

Kids should be encouraged to take a break from sports, and having a free weekend every once in a while is a good thing!

  • **Marc Bernier is the Clinical Director of Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation for Encore Rehab at the Inverness Clinic and Spain Park High School.  Marc has served as an international sports medicine consultant specializing in the field of rehabilitation and conditioning for European based professional soccer clubs, and is a national lecturer on the management of youth sports injuries.  He can be contacted for any questions at
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