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Coaches Corner

Coaches are the leaders of any team. As the leader, the coach must be prepared for every situation that may arise and respond confidently and appropriately. PlaySafe strives to educate Coaches on safe athletic participation and return to play following injury so they can be confident in their relationship with the sports medicine staff and better understand the decisions regarding safe participation. The educational information on safe athletic participation is ever changing and therefore so is the information contained here. Please check back frequently for updates.

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Sport Medicine Careers

Athletic Trainers

That’s an Athletic Trainer’s description of the daily excitement in working with athletes. We’ve all seen it. The athlete goes down on the field of play, and the crowd eagerly awaits to see if he/she will get up, walk, be carried off, need an ambulance, or even return to play. A small group of people rush to the athlete’s side—who are they?? One of these key emergency responders is your team’s Athletic Trainer (ATC). As healthcare professionals who have earned either our bachelors or masters degree in athletic training education, as well as passed a challenging Board Examination, we are onsite daily to ensure that our athletes receive immediate medical attention when they need it most. Collaborating with physicians, Athletic Trainers take care of your child, or an athlete you may know, optimizing the activity and participation of that athlete, providing injury prevention strategies, diagnostic abilities, and treatment intervention to get the athlete off of the injury bench and back in the game! Next time you see me, the Athletic Trainer for your team, remember we work long (and often hot!) hours, taking pride in the care, attention, and education provided to our athletes, while focusing our energy on healthy and safe athletic play. Enhance your knowledge about what we do!! Visit “http://www.nata.org/athletic-training

Athletic trainers specialize in preventing, diagnosing, and treating muscle and bone injuries and illnesses. They work with people of all ages and all skill levels, from young children to soldiers and professional athletes.

Physical Therapists

“Physical Therapists make each day count by helping people, whether it is through recovering from an injury, mentally overcoming a physical challenge, cheering people on when they are down, touching their lives in a compassionate way…..or just plain making them smile.” Physical Therapists (PT’s) blend science with inspiration, teaching people how to prevent or manage a health condition, restore movement, reduce pain, and prevent disability, all while motivating them to function at their absolute best. By helping our patients understand their bodies, Physical Therapists offer long-term health benefits so that patients can learn to manage their pain independently if an episode of injury or pain reoccurs. The exciting fact about a career in Physical Therapy is that we provide care for people of ALL ages, from infants to the elderly, in a variety of settings, including hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, home health agencies, schools, sports and fitness facilities, work settings, and nursing homes. We attend a rigorous educational program and are required to receive a graduate degree – either a master’s degree or a clinical doctorate — followed by a rather intense National Licensure Examination to earn our license to practice. As a partner in our patients’ journey to recovery, Physical Therapists embrace the daily challenge of motivating patients to achieve their best performance, educating them to tune into their bodies, and helping them to return to life’s activities, be it sports, work, or a busy family life! Keep yourself in MOTION by learning what we do! “http://www.apta.org

Physical therapists help people who have injuries or illnesses improve their movement and manage their pain. They are often an important part of rehabilitation and treatment of patients with chronic conditions or injuries.

Orthopaedic Surgery

An orthopedic surgery career offers board-certified surgeons the opportunity to specialize in treating the musculoskeletal system, including such subspecialties as sports medicine and hand surgery. The orthopedic surgery career path requires 8-9 years of post-baccalaureate education, along with continued maintenance of board certification. Continue reading for more information about becoming an orthopedic surgeon.

Career Information: Orthopedic surgeons operate on patients with musculoskeletal problems, including arm, leg, neck, bone and tissue ailments. Orthopedic disorders and conditions may range from congenital deformities to musculoskeletal injuries, trauma and tumors. These surgeons perform operations on patients who are under general anesthesia. The field offers qualified individuals the chance to build lucrative careers in hospitals, academic medical centers or private practice environments.

Career Requirements: After completing a 4-year bachelor’s degree program in biology, pre-medicine or a related field, aspiring orthopedic surgeons must complete four additional years of medical school, followed by a 4- to 5-year orthopedic surgery residency in a hospital. The first year of residency usually covers general surgery, with the remaining years devoted to orthopedic-specific training. Surgeons wishing to specialize further in subspecialties, such as orthopedic sports medicine or pediatric orthopedics, must also complete a 1- to 2-year fellowship after their residency. After completing their residencies, orthopedic surgeons must also pass an exam by the American Board of Orthopedic Surgery, a division of the American Board of Medical Specialties, in order to be certified in their area of surgery (www.abos.org). Recertification is required every 7-10 years. Find out more at: www.aossm.org

Primary Care Sports Medicine

A sports medicine physician is a primary care physician such as a family physician, pediatrician, or internal medicine physician who has obtained one to two years of additional training in the care of athletes. This entails learning more about non-surgical orthopedics, medical problems in sports, and other sports related issues. Sports medicine physicians may care for young athletes, collegiate athletes, professional athletes, or just “weekend warriors”. Many still spend a lot of their time caring for other patient problems in their primary field of training such as family medicine.

Training: Sports medicine physicians complete a 4 year college degree, 4 years of medical school, 3-4 years of residency in their primary field, and an additional 1-2 years of a
sports medicine “fellowship” at an accredited program. The acceptance to medical school and beyond requires acceptance to those programs. Advancement to residency and licensure requires passage of the United States Medical Licensing Exams. Board certification in their primary medical field requires an additional board certification exam, and finally there is an exam after sports medicine fellowship to receive a certificate of added qualifications in sports medicine. Maintenance of all of these certifications requires career long recertification and continuing medical education on scheduled basis. Find out more at: www.amssm.org

Athletes Need To Know

Athletes of all ages are inundated with information on maximizing their bodies and minds for optimal sports performance. Play Safe strives to educate the athlete on safe athletic participation including performance enhancement, injury prevention and return to play following injury. Please check back frequently as this information continues to evolve.

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