Ski and Snowboard Hall of Fame
John Atkins - 1946
John Atkins - In 1978, Atkins became a Certified Athletic Trainer at the University of Utah, where he was first exposed to the sport of skiing while working with the university’s NCAA national championship ski team. From there, Atkins’ talents were quickly recognized by the U.S. Ski Team, which hired him as head trainer and conditioning coach, primarily for the women’s alpine team. During his tenure with the team through the 1980s, the women’s team posted some of its best results ever, including an overall World Cup title by Tamara McKinney – the only one ever for an American woman. Atkins’ year-round conditioning program and his motivational coaching style, in conjunction with Drs. Richard Steadman and Topper Hagerman, made him an integral part of the first fully integrated sports medicine team that became a model for future Olympic teams. In 1988, Atkins was named Director of Conditioning for the entire U.S. Ski Team. When Steadman was invited to the Vail Valley Medical Center to start the renowned Steadman-Hawkins Clinic, Atkins joined him, helping to rehabilitate thousands of patients. Through his passion for motivation and his skills as an athletic trainer, Atkins has kept thousands of skiers on the slopes.