First NATA meeting in 1950 at the Muehlebach Hotel in Kansas City where about 200 athletic trainers gathered (left). In 2018, more than 11,000 members, exhibitors and guests attended the 69th NATA Clinical Symposia & AT Expo held in New Orleans at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center (right). 


NATA History

In the early 1900s, many early leaders, inventors and sports medicine practitioners were pioneers in their own right and contributed to what is now known as the modern-day athletic training profession. As a result of their efforts, NATA was founded in 1950 and has since expanded over the years to encompass a global membership.

Recognizing the need for a set of professional standards and appropriate professional recognition, NATA has helped to unify athletic trainers across the country by setting a standard for professionalism, education, certification, state regulation, research and practice settings. Members serve as leaders of the association, which has multiple committees working together to advance the profession.  

From the humble beginnings of a postal mailing service located at 3315 State St., in Lafayette, Indiana, (used by NATA Secretary and Founding Father of Modern-Day Athletic Training William “Pinky” Newell in the early years to correspond with members), the first NATA office was headquartered in Greenville, North Carolina, starting in 1977. By 1989, the association was rapidly growing and the office was relocated to 2952 N. Stemmons Freeway, in Dallas. In 2014, the office moved again and is currently headquartered at 1620 Valwood Parkway, in Carrollton, Texas. NATA is serviced by a full-time executive director and more than 40 full-time staff members.  

For a complete history of NATA and the development of the athletic training profession, visit: 


Logo History






A 2012 membership survey indicated the need for a new logo that would better represent where athletic trainers are positioned within the health care marketplace. NATA created a new brand for athletic trainers with a greater emphasis on medicine. A sleek, modern logo draws attention to the "AT" portion of NATA by reversing those two letters.

This video explains how the decision was made to create a new logo and explains the details and thought process behind the design elements.

The NATA logo and all components, including the stylized Rod of Asclepius and "AT" graphic, are protected by copyright and may not be used by third parties.




When we developed our new NATA logo, we made our design decisions based upon building the AT brand. We want everyone to know who athletic trainers are and to understand the service they are providing to physically active people across the country, so we embraced the AT symbol as a visual representation of the overall athletic training brand. Interested in acquiring a license to use the AT symbol? The license is free for NATA members and can be purchased by non-members for a fee. Download the AT logo on our licensing page.



nata logo 2013


In keeping with efforts to reinvigorate the association, NATA created this modern image. The form in motion, combined with our tagline of "Health Care for Life & Sport." portrays a dynamic medical profession without pigeonholing it; the clean lines also serve to focus attention on the name of our association.


nata logo 1991


The time had come to establish a different visual presentation with a new design direction, which included the laurel wreath.




nata logo 1984


The board decided to polish the original logo.




nata logo 1952


A four-man committee selected this visual to be the emblem of NATA, and it more or less endured (with occasional minor tweaks) for several decades. The committee included Chair Jack Cramer; Dwayne Dixon of Indiana University; Frank Medina of the University of Texas; and Dean Nesmith of the University of Kansas.