Things Athletic Trainers do that Drive Athletes Crazy
Athletic trainers put up with a lot from coaches, athletes, parents and supporters, especially when others don’t really understand what they do. But did you know there’s a number of things ATCs do that drive athletes crazy? Here’s a few things ATCs do that drive athletes crazy.
We need to ice that
While it may seem like ATCs have an unhealthy obsession with ice, there’s a good reason why it’s the first thing they recommend. Icing an injury site, whether you’ve just injured the area or you’re rehabbing an old injury, helps to reduce any swelling or inflammation in the area. Icing also helps to reduce pain and can bring out any bruising that may be hiding underneath. Next time your ATC tells you ‘you need to ice that’ say thank you, and accept that you’ll be resting for the next 20 minutes with ice strapped to your body – and no, you can’t take it off just because it feels really, really cold.
Let’s put some tape on that
Tape is the magic that helps your ATC hold you together. From fingers and thumbs through to ankles, knees, and shoulders, your ATC has a multitude of tape in various sizes hidden in their kit. And despite what many athletes think, it’s not there just to keep your socks up, tie your hair back, or stop your shoe laces from coming loose. Tape offers support to weak or injured areas, reducing the risk of further injury and can be used to prevent injuries from occurring (this is why some sports make it compulsory for athletes to tape their ankles – it reduces the risk of spraining your ankle if you fall or twist your foot). And a little tip – if you don’t want the hairs on your legs ripped out as the tape comes off, either shave them or get some pre-wrap!
Let me just check this side…one more time…
A lot of athletes think ATCs are trying to torture them, especially when assessing an injury. While you may hate being moved into various positions and back again (sit down, stand up, lay on your stomach, roll on your back, sit up again…), there’s a good reason for this – your ATC is trying to find out what is wrong. Before you whine that they’re touching the ‘wrong side, that’s not the side that hurts!’ remember that in order to really know how badly you’ve hurt yourself, your ATC needs to know what your good side feels like. It’s called comparing the injury site and helps your ATC decide the best course of action so you can return to the field faster.
How did you do with those exercises?
Ah, the exercises – those annoying, but important rehab exercises that an ATC expects an athlete to do even though you’ve told them you hate them. Do you know why? Because rehab is an important part of overcoming injury and even preventing further injury. You are not being given exercises as torture (and seriously they’re not that bad!), you’ve been given them to get you back into the team faster. So be good, and do your exercises like you were told!
Athletes and athletic trainers spend countless hours together and it’s not all fun and games. Next time you think your athletic trainer is evil or crazy, just remember that you or your team mates probably made them that way.