There are so many benefits to playing sports. Through athletic competition, athletes can gain confidence, stronger peer relationships, and better physical health and skills. However, it’s important to acknowledge that playing sports comes with some risks too. Athletic trainers are essential to making sports safer. These specially trained experts work closely with athletes to help them stay physically fit and healed from injuries. They are highly qualified health care professionals who are skilled in the areas of prevention, examination, diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of athletes.
Athletic trainers don’t just help with injuries and concussions; they are equipped to deal with issues that can affect athletes such as heat stroke and other environmental concerns, cardiac emergencies, dental or oral injuries, and nutrition issues. Trainers need to stay current on the topics that are related to athletic training. They aim to be efficient and effective in methods for prevention, diagnosis, treatment, and rehab. Read on to learn more about 5 services that are provided by a licensed athletic trainer.
- Prevention and pre-hab. Teaching athletes the proper ways to warm up and cool down can help with injury prevention. In addition, trainers can help athletes with their routines of strength training, core training, sport-specific functional conditioning, stretching, and balance. Part of prevention can be in the form of education, as trainers can help athletes to learn about ways to prevent injury as well. By working on strengthening, conditioning, and improving athletes’ flexibility and balance, licensed athletic trainers can help athletes to reduce the risk of injury and to increase overall performance.
- Evaluation and diagnosis. Trainers are able to evaluate for athletic injuries of all kinds. From physical exams to range of motion tests to imaging studies, there are many tools a trainer can use to assess an athlete’s condition. Once they interpret the results of their evaluations, trainers use knowledge of anatomy, physiology, and biomechanics to determine the nature and extent of an injury.
- Treatment. There are a variety of treatment methods that trainers use to treat athletes. One treatment involves ice. Icing can help to reduce pain, inflammation, and swelling. Applying for 20-30 minutes at a time, several times a day can be effective in healing injuries. Compression and elevation are two more forms of treatment that are both used to reduce swelling. Rest can be an important part of treatment, as injuries should not be aggravated. Taping can stabilize joints and muscles, and it can also help to reduce pain and inflammation. Done the right way, trainer-prescribed stretching and exercise can help with healing and treatment as well. Additionally, there are manual therapies and modalities that trainers might incorporate into a healing program for athletes. Some of these therapies include massage, dry needling, cupping, and cryotherapy.
- Rehabilitation. Rehabilitating from injuries can be a pivotal part of an athlete’s journey. Athletic trainers can help to develop individualized rehabilitation programs that will help athletes to regain strength, range of motion, and functional ability for their sport.
- Immediate and emergency care. In crucial moments during a game, practice, or conditioning, athletic trainers are able to provide emergency care on the spot. Trainers can determine the level of consciousness and the level of care needed. Then, athletic trainers can administer the appropriate emergency response such as CPR, AED, splinting, bleeding control, body temperature control, or calling in emergency medical services.
ROI does athletic training right. The team at ROI uses an integrated approach, pairing a skilled athletic trainer with a team of physical therapists, exercise physiologists, strength and conditioning coaches, and registered dietitians. This team helps to account for the whole athlete and his or her overall wellness. ROI is not just a gym. It’s an advanced physical therapy facility that helps to deliver a science-based, integrated approach to athletes’ rehabilitation and performance.
Meet the ROI Trainer: Trevor Merritt, a Washington native, has a lot of letters after his name including: MS, ATC, LAT, and CSCS. He has trained hard to become a licensed athletic trainer, and he has gained great experiences working with college and professional teams including the Washington State football team and the Seattle Seahawks. He is a specialist in functional range conditioning as well as a certified strength and conditioning coach.
Athletes need to stay healthy and safe. Athletic trainers are such an important part of sports. ROI offers athletic training and sports medicine coverage which includes the prevention, examination, diagnosis, treatment, and rehab for athletes’ chronic injuries and medical conditions. This kind of training service is great for games, tournaments, camps, practices or other sporting events. Investing in athletic training services is a move to improve outcomes and performance and to prevent injury or re-injury.
Do you need an athletic trainer in your life? Whether you need help with your own sport training, a school team, or youth sports events, ROI can help you figure out a plan to work with an athletic trainer. Reach out to ROI at 512-562-9141.