AT of the Month - Paul Hrynkow ~ Manitoba Athletic Therapists Association

AT of the Month - Paul Hrynkow

AT of the Month for December - Paul Hrynkow

Paul Hrynkow is a Certified Athletic Therapist who is currently the owner of the Sport-Tec Athletic Therapy Centre in Winnipeg.  He is a graduate of the athletic training program at the University of North Dakota with over 26 years of experience in the field.  His work with athletes include:  professional football (Winnipeg Blue Bombers), and various other sports;  the Canadian Olympic program (Athletics, Volleyball, and national level athletes); university athletics (University of Manitoba).  He has done extensive work with professional ballet and modern dancers, locally, and from around the world.  As a practicing therapist in his clinic he treats a wide range of individuals from elite recreational athletes (with a specialty in distance running) to chronic workplace and motor vehicle injuries. He was the first AT to open a privately owned Athletic Therapy clinic, and hence it is the longest in existence in Canada.

What made you want to become and AT?

I became an AT because it allowed me to marry my two passions, medicine and sports.  A sports injury led me to get treatment from an AT introducing me to the profession.  Little did I know it would open up to include a much wider scope to where having an impact on restoring a person an active lifestyle would be what drives me.

Why did you choose to open your own clinic?

Truthfully, my decision to start a private clinic was one born out of necessity. With no jobs available, tied to Winnipeg for a number of reasons, and some prodding from Glen Bergeron, an idea was cultivated.  I began treating after hours in the offices of physicians I had work with the Bombers.  When I outgrew their facility, I moved out to a full time practice.

Best advice for someone who wants to start up their own business?

Advice for starting a your own business.  First you must ask yourself, are you a health care provider first and a business second, or the other way around.  I like the first option, as compassionate and expert patient care allows you to build a strong reputation, where word of mouth will be your strongest marketing product.    Have solid goals, and prepare to be creative, adaptable, patient and willing to perpetually advance your skill set as an AT.

What do you want to see for the future of AT?

I see the field of Athletic Therapy growing into the wide-ranging area of workplace injury and prevention.  The AT is the perfect animal to deal with the industrial athlete, much in the same manner as we have been doing it with sports teams for years.

Advice for Students

My advice for students is simple.  Understand the fundamentals. Not only does it create a platform to build strong assessment and rehabilitation skills, but also, it opens your mind to adapt to unique situations and injuries.  This allows you to think outside the box and grow as an AT.

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