Health Care in High School Athletics

Written by admin on February 15, 2013 – 2:02 pm -

Within high school athletics there is an inherent risk for injury. On some days parents may be present, but on many occasions coaches are tasked with injury management and coaching simultaneously. To relieve some of the stress of this dual responsibility, and ensure proper medical care for high school athletes many schools employee Certified Athletic Trainers.

Certified Athletic Trainers are not to be confused with strength and conditioning coaches, or personal trainers, but are health care professionals. While working under the direction of a physician they are trained in the prevention, diagnosis, immediate care, and rehabilitation of many injuries and medical conditions.

Certified Athletic Trainers also may work in industrial settings, physician’s offices, physical therapy centers, hospitals, colleges/ universities, professional sports, performing arts, wellness centers/ gyms, the military, or other public service organizations such as fire/ police departments.

So whether it is a fracture, a sprain, tendonitis, muscle cramps/ spasms, a contusion, or even asthma, diabetes, or heat illness (etc), “Every Body Needs An Athletic Trainer”.

Mary Sult is a certified and licensed (NC) athletic trainer at Orthopaedic Specialists of North Carolina (OSNC). Mary regularly provides outreach services to Bunn High School (Bunn, NC). OSNC’s Sports Medicine staff also works with other schools and sports organizations in Franklin, Granville, Wake, and Vance counties. For more information please visit

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“Athletic trainers are valuable health care professionals.”

Written by admin on January 18, 2013 – 12:56 pm -

Call it what you do – January 18, 2013

“Athletic trainers have fought for years to be recognized and have the approriate regulations in place to protect the public. Hard work has gone into making sure that it accurately reflects what we do for the public.

Let’s remember and remind people that we do athletic training. Within that is a number of things. We do injury prevention, diagnosis, injury management and treatment, rehabilitation, administration and professional development. What do we not do?

We do not do medicine. We work under a physician and we are in the sports medicine field. We are not board certified. We ARE certified by the Board of Certification. We are not performing physical therapy. We are very skilled at performing rehabilitation. We are not water boys/girls. We do promote the benefits of hydration and other ways to prevent heat illness. We are not equipment managers, but we are skilled at fitting equipment properly and making sure that appropriate checks are in place to ensure the safety of athletes. We do not coach or do personal training, but work with coaches and strength coaches to protect athletes and optimize a person’s plan. We are not the “trainer.” The appropriate title, and the one that you can use, is athletic trainer.

Be proud of what you do and be accurate in how you explain it. Do not let someone else define your profession. Define it for them. The law is there to protect what we do. Know your practice act. Read it. If you don’t understand it then ask someone to explain it. Don’t practice with an idea of what you think is your practice act. Know it. If you travel to another state then you need to know that practice act. Can you practice there? These are important things that many ATs neglect to pay attention to and it gets them in trouble. Know your practice act.

Athletic trainers are valuable health care professionals. We have a specific and important skill set. Your skills are unmatched in the health care field. This is why we are sought after professionals. People want our skill set. Do not let others try to minimize your impact. Do not let others define what athletic training is. Do not let yourself improperly defining what you do. You are an athletic trainer.”


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