One aspect of the athletic trainers’ job is to manage emergency situations on the field. We preach having an emergency action plan and knowing who is going to do what when that unfortunate emergency does happen. But for teams, coaches, and the medical professionals, it is important that we not only consider the EAP for our home games. Read the rest of this entry »

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Over the course of the last 9 months, I have spent significant time researching two topics: Cheerleading injuries and the Functional Movement Screen (FMS). This has culminated in my Capstone Project with the above title. Today I’m pleased to share with you my project. I would certainly be remiss if I did not thank the cheerleaders at Waterloo High School and their coach Amber Hensiek, my mentors Ashley Rockey and Dr. Carlen Mulholland, and the program director at the University of South Florida Dr. Rebecca Lopez. Without all of their help, this project would not have been possible. Please feel free to leave any comments or questions you may have and I’ll try to answer them to the best of my ability!

 

Injury prevention is a mainstay in the athletic training profession and something that we attempt to achieve on a daily basis. Identifying exactly why and how the injury rates can be improved must be a priority. National injury surveillance programs have been developed that help researchers to track these injury rates if that sport is included in the particular interests of the study.

Cheerleading has long fought to be recognized as a sport, which caused it to be excluded from national sports injury surveillance programs for many years. Additionally, rules and regulations have long lagged behind the sport itself in terms of safety. There are national associations such as the National Cheer Safety Foundation and the National Cheer Association who have attempted to improve the safety of the sport, but much work remains. Cheerleading is no longer the cheerleading mothers and grandmothers grew up with girls on the sideline leading the cheers of victory. Instead, the sport has become a competitive activity with similarities to gymnastics combined with team spirit1. Many cheerleaders were at one time gymnasts and these girls have brought those skills and experiences to the cheerleading competition mat. Competitive cheer and gymnastics share many risks and rewards. One of these risks is the increased opportunity for serious injury. Absent serious injury, cheerleading also causes numerous less severe injuries such as sprains and strains on a regular basis. It has been noted that while cheerleaders do not suffer injuries at the same rate as other athletes, the percentage of catastrophic injury is much higher than other female sports at the high school level1,2.

If you want to read the whole thing, you can download the paper FinalDraftCapstone.

Read the rest of this entry »

Training on Game Day

April 6, 2014

My friend Brandon contacted me on Facebook the other night. Brandon is an athletic director at a high school on the east coast. He had some concerns with weight training and athletes. It seems his coaches and teachers are in selfish mode and unfortunately student-athletes are caught up in the middle of this. He was asking my thoughts about training on game-days, etc. What ensued was a lengthy discussion, but I think (and hope) that the discussion will be of us to others as well. Read the rest of this entry »

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? Read the rest of this entry »

This is from an old discussion on the High School Baseball Web discussion forum (http://community.hsbaseballweb.com/forums). A high school player had posted some frustrations about playing time and he felt misled and mistreated. Here was my response. I was a freshman in college at the time and one year removed from a similar situation. That post was met with great response then and it still rings in my head on occasion now. I’m surprised I hadn’t posted it sooner..

You are going through something that is very hard. I know–I was in your shoes just last spring. I was a senior who had been in the coach’s program since 7th grade (was around my entire life). I definitely felt betrayed when I wasn’t given what I thought was a fair shot at winning the starting spot. I did get the first start of the year and we won. That was on a Monday and we played 5 games that week I think. I started three and we won two of those three. I felt pretty good because although I didn’t do a whole lot on offense, things were pretty solid behind the dish. Well, due to a variety of mishaps I found myself off the field and I really thought that I being punished for others’ mistakes. We were bad and I felt like he had chosen to move on which as much as I hated it, I understood why he was doing it. Read the rest of this entry »

I consider sports medicine to be very much a team activity and to provide superior sports medicine, there must be a team of professionals in place to make it happen. In this series, I will address those professionals that I consider crucial for a high school sports medicine team. I will post both the “ideal roles” as well as more realistic roles. Over the next few weeks, I will address each profession in detail.

Tonight I have provided a brief outline of the series. I consider these individuals very important to providing the best care to the student-athlete.

  • Certified Athletic Trainer(s)
  • Team Physician
  • Orthopedic Surgeon
  • Primary Care Physician
  • Dentist
  • Physical Therapist
  • Strength and Conditioning Coach
  • School Nurse
  • Emergency Medical Services (EMS)

Please check back each week as I explain why I believe each of these professions is important in providing superior care to our student-athletes at the high school level.

Random Thought: Volleyball

October 17, 2012

I was sitting at a volleyball game last night and had what I would say is interesting thought. I realized these girls do a lot of diving after the volleyball and sometimes they lay out although there is no chance of getting the ball. But it’s been my experience that many of them do not get hurt doing so. The question that came to mind for me was “why (or how) don’t volleyball players suffer more shoulder dislocations and AC sprains? Read the rest of this entry »

“Stop reading the news clippings. You’re small and you’re going to be smaller every week. There ain’t going to be no growth spurt between now and the first game. You’re going to use your minds! You’re going to play with your heart! And that is what you’re going to use to win the State Championship.”–Gary Gaines

The Hidden Injury: A Concussion Series

 

For more information about this series, go here!

I found this video on YouTube and although it’s a couple of years old, I think it is important for us to be thinking about and understand. ACL injuries in female athletes have a large presence in high school and youth sports. Check out this video… Read the rest of this entry »

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