Dr. Lee Burton has a low threshold of boredom, and it shows. He's always seeking — and ready for — the next challenge.
"I grew up on a farm," he says, "and I was always active, either outside working or playing sports. I never was one for just sitting around."
As co-creator of the nationally acclaimed Functional Movement Screen (FMS), he is revolutionizing how America measures fitness. He's also hoping to change how we deal with our lack of fitness … and the athletes at Averett are among the beneficiaries.
"Athletic training is usually focused on reactive measures. Someone gets hurt, here's what you do. I want our trainers to be proactive by making sure those who are not hurt do not get hurt."
At Averett and around the country, Burton encourages people to pay attention to their bodies' weak areas and to implement strength and exercise programs.
His approach to teaching is very personal. "I see my job as creating a more self-reliant individual," he says. "I want my students to be good professionals in whatever field they pursue."
He offers a lot of practical, hands-on experience as part of their training, and they get personal attention, as well. "It's almost like a family," he says. "My wife and I host a Christmas party at our house every year for the athletic training students, with a little Santa exchange, and we also host a spring cookout."
Because of Burton's connections with professional sports teams that use the FMS, he is consistently able to arrange for his students to get internships with professional teams.
"If you're looking for a university that is going to challenge and encourage you, there will be numerous opportunities here that you won't have at other schools. We're right for you if you want to do the work."
Co-creator of the Functional Movement Screen and works with pro-athletes including the Indianapolis Colts, New England Patriots, Oakland Raiders, Greenbay Packers, Army Rangers, Navy Seals and the FBI
Doctor of philosophy, curriculum and instruction: health and wellness, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
Master of science, education with emphasis in athletic training, Old Dominion University
Bachelor of Science, athletic training, minor in business management, Appalachian State University