Why Just Football?

October 20, 2013

On this blog, I’ve made it a habit to talk about other sports. I love football and many of you I’m sure are aware of that! But football is always in the spotlight and when it comes to injuries, there’s no getting out of the spotlight for the game of football. But football is not the only sport for which there is serious risk of serious injury. Why, then is there so much emphasis on safety in football and not other sports?

I was watching a news segment out of West Virginia earlier this afternoon and they were talking about the requirements in WV schools for having an athletic trainer or a “football trainer” onsite for football events. Apparently that is state law. But one stat given in that segment was that only 38% of those high schools with that mandated coverage for football provided any coverage for the other sports. Do injuries not happen in the other sports?

We know that isn’t true. Injuries happen in all sports and they are comprised of all sorts of severities. But for some reason, when sports safety comes up in discussion, the discussion immediately goes to football.

On a Friday night, I have two team physicians and an ambulance onsite at the varsity football game along with myself (an Athletic Trainer). I’m not here to advocate for having that kind of medical coverage at every sporting event. But I have to ask why we, as a society, do not consider it a priority to provide some medical coverage at all sporting events.

As an athletic trainer, you never really know what is going to happen when the game begins. Most nights it’s pretty calm and the extent of my night may consist of making a few ice bags at the end of the night. Other nights we may call an ambulance. Last week as I sat on my golf cart during a soccer game, I had a parent tell me that she hoped I had an easy night. Well, that easy night quickly turned scary at the end of the game. I can’t go into detail, but let’s just say that is not how any of us would like for a game to end! Today I was talking to a co-worker and I told her to just think what would have the response been if this had been in a freshmen game? Or at a school where there is no certified athletic trainer?

I did some thinking and just looking at my numbers for this fall, obviously football is going to lead in the number of injuries. Well, they should because it’s a collision sport and there’s about as many of them as there are in all of my other fall sports combined. But per capita, cheerleading is #1 on my list this fall.

So my question is why isn’t there mandated medical coverage? And how do we change that? How do we change the culture and the economics to provide appropriate healthcare for our student-athletes?

Every Athlete Deserves an Athletic Trainer. #AT4ALL


One Response to “Why Just Football?”

  1. Arjun Says:

    Very innovative thought .I wonder how you manage all this .

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