National Athletic Training Month 2023: ATs are Immediate Responders


National Athletic Training Month 2023: ATs are Immediate Responders

As National Athletic Training Month 2023 comes to an end, we want to thank Athletic Trainers for caring for their athletes and keeping them game ready throughout the season. Athletic Trainers are immediate responders, and they are often the first on the field when an athlete falls. 

Throughout March, we asked athletic trainers across the country to share stories about how they stayed prepared for game day, assisted their athletes through injury and recovery, helped them get back in the game, and more.

Below are just some of their answers!

Have you responded to an athletic emergency? Share your story. 

This summer, while I was working a track meet, I had a runner go into heat exhaustion, which triggered an epileptic seizure. I got him covered and cooled as best we could until he was out of the seizure, and then we were able to get fluids in him. He was fine. - La'Tamera F.

Had an athlete collapse and go into cardiac arrest after warmups. Performed CPR and got him quick medical care. He’s doing amazing now! – April Gonzalez

I have responded to multiple emergencies while employed as an AT. One being a female wrestler fractured humerus. She thanked me the next year while participating in the same contest! – Tanner K.

Share a story about how you helped an athlete recover after an injury. 

In 2020 I had a female athlete who tore her ACL tumbling. She had surgery right before the pandemic hit. Because of COVID, PT clinics were closed the first few months, and by the time she was able to go to PT, she was behind in her strength and ROM. I spent the 2020-2021 year working with her in improving her strength and ROM and getting her back to play just in time for track season. – Chelsea H.

I work at a high school, and I have rehabbed an athlete after they tore two of the three ligaments in their ankle. It seemed like it wouldn't get better, but after three months of working together the athlete was back playing basketball and competing in track. – Mercedes Tiger Athletic Training

One of my favorites was a track athlete who came in the Monday before State and could barely lift their arm above their head. Shoulder was just killing them. It appeared to be a muscle strain. JV coach was freaking out as this kid was favored to win State and was a multi-event individual. We came up with a plan and talked sense into both of them. All week, the athlete did exactly what was asked of them, and we followed the plan. They won State in more than one event – new State meet record included – and team State champs. Amazing weekend and a round of high-fives for helping to get that shoulder back to fighting form. – Kelsey D. 

Athletic Trainers are healthcare heroes because…

We usually are the initial responder to injury and involved in every step in a safe return to play. – Beau K. 

My husband (the AT in the house) said, “Because we make a difference in people’s lives.” – Wendy H. 

“We are the first person the athletes see in the morning and the last person they see when they leave. We are here for the tiniest of scratches to the ACL tear and everything in between. All this and we wouldn’t have it any other way.” – Nic T.

“…Because we treat everyone and try to leave people better than we initially met them. We’re freaking awesome!” - Mikki C.

At School Health, we know that the role of the athletic trainer is always changing, and no two days are ever the same! Thank you for everything you do to help athletes of all ages – from high school to elite sports – succeed in their dreams.