We have got to do better

February 14, 2014

As an athletic trainer I know that I am valuable and that every single youth athlete needs to have access to the skills that I can provide. I can not only be there to counsel about health issues, treat acute injuries, solve the chronic issues, but I can also save their life.

I sometimes joke (although it is wholeheartedly true) when I do something remotely remarkable that I save people’s lives. I do in fact save lives. I have done so on the field and in indirect ways routinely. I can claim to be a life saver.

I want more people to know my value. More than that. I want everyone to know the value that an athletic trainer brings. There are some that wish that the NATA did more to promote us. I know that they do a great job of doing so, but at the same time I wish that there was a way to do more. I understand that ‘I’ am the NATA. What each AT does is a voice for the NATA.

My rub is that there are some that want to claim to be able to do what ATs do well. It is like the pastry chef claiming to be able to make excellent steaks. You make great pastries, but I am never going to trust you with my steak. Some professionals are great at what they do and I will respect them for that. They should not try to claim to be the solution for protecting youth athletes. Athletic trainers have the knowledge and understanding to do this. Keep your cake. We’ll take care of the steak.

It is my hope that each state organization will make a push to promote athletic training more. I hope that each district will make strides to support an AT in every high school and middle school in a reasonable amount of time. I do hope that the NATA will lead this and make it a concerted effort to do everything that they can to educate and inform. To lead the charge to make every school safer.

My hope is that every athletic trainer will push for House Resolution 72 to be passed so that there is support for our young athletes. We need to be focused on passing legislation that is intended to protect our youth. Join with me. Be active and be heard.

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