By Jaelin Engle
WCHS athletes have had the chance to have support and gain knowledge from athletic trainers, athletic trainers are people who specialize on the health of athletes during training and or a game. They are at every game and practice so that if an athlete is hurt they will be first on the scene to help with the injury at hand. If trainer’s did not go to practices and games injuries could worsen since the athlete did not get immediate care.
Athletic trainers also help the athlete with any emotional injuries and they give them advice about ways to be healthy and or ways to improve on their performance. WCHS athletic trainer Sarah Rowe became a trainer due to her own experience in high school.
“ I ended up missing a lot of softball season one year due to something that I now know was a silly injury that I could have treated and prevented without even missing any time. When the chiropractor I worked with found out, he told me about athletic training and I was immediately interested,” Rowe said.
Rowe discussed how and where she learned the techniques she uses today.
“Part of it I learned in my classes in college, some of it I learned from the athletic trainers that I did my internships with. I’ve learned a lot since I’ve started working as well. Since healthcare is an always evolving field, I try to keep my mind open and learn from the people I come into contact with or through various classes and workshops that I take to maintain my national certification and state license,” Rowe said.
Injuries are very common amongst athletes in any sport that allows physical contact. Athletic trainers work at the scene so that they injuries do not get that severe. WCHS sophomore football player Bailey DeBernardi discussed his recent injuries and what happened at the scene.
“ A recent injury I have had was a concussion during practice. After the impact, I fell to the ground and saw a lot of stars, but opened my eyes to the intense bright sun. Sarah, one of our trainers, was right by me as soon as it was apparent that I wasn’t getting up. She helped get my helmet off and to be honest, the rest is a little fuzzy. I remember that I kept trying and failing to stand up and insisting that I was ‘all good’. She tried a more gentle approach at first and told me that I didn’t look all good. But after I kept trying to get up and obviously didn’t get far, she firmly told me to stop saying that I was all good when I clearly wasn’t. Long story short, she took care of me when I was still a little dazed. She did everything she could considering the circumstances and helped me take care of myself afterwards,” DeBernardi said.
Athletes tend to have a very high standard for athletic trainers. Many of them may even look up to them for advice.
“ I generally always expect the fastest recovery possible when under the trainer´s care. They get us in and out the door as fast as the type of injury will allow. I personally have always been taken good care of,” DeBernardi said.
To become an athletic trainer it takes a lot of time and school work to become a professional. They will have to obtain a master’s degree in athletic training and then you have to go into other education such as getting an associates degree in being a medical assistant so that you may learn more about injuries, ways to deal with injuries and techniques you can use to help with each kind of injury. Rowe shared some of the processes that she had to go through to become an athletic trainer.
“ To become an Athletic Trainer you have to go to college for 5-6 years, obtaining a masters degree in athletic training. Usually a student would get an undergrad degree in something like exercise science or kinesiology. Then you would go on to what’s called an entry level master’s program in athletic training. To get your degree you will take classes in subjects such as injury evaluation, injury management, emergency management, and rehabilitation just to name a few,” Rowe said.