Azael A. Gomez
They’re there for every sports game doing what they do best with no breaks, sacrificing time for every team. They attend every practice and tournament with high alert. The athletic trainers are ready to assist with any injury.
An athletic trainer is someone who assists players when they’re injured in practice or at a sports game, but the trainers do a lot more than most people think.
“Everybody thinks that we just give out water but we do a lot,” head trainer Jessica Montez said. “We actually do rehab for players that are injured and first aid.”
Coach trainer Omar Saad plans to grow the organization.
“Students can join for next year at the end of April and May. We’ll have tryouts for incoming freshmen, they can come in August for tryouts as well as anyone who missed tryouts in the spring,” Saad said.
There is a process that a student goes through to be a trainer.
“We do have very high standards for grades,” Saad said. “We (also) require students to sign a contract at the beginning of the year stating that they’re going to be here and obey by the rules.”
Saad hopes students will become interested in the program especially with the new changes.
“We have 11 trainers and we would love to get up to 16 and 20 trainers but we’ve been rebuilding the program a little bit and it’s worked out pretty well. We’re hoping that the numbers would go up,” Saad said.
Being a trainer requires commitment to the team and to the other sports.
“The positive part of being a trainer is you get to see all the sports and interact with everybody and you know everybody (such as) the coaches all the players,” Montez said. “The negative part is that well you don’t really get that much sleep but it is fun.”
A trainer needs to learn how to manage time because of the long practices and games.
“It’s important to maintain a balanced schedule and being available,” head trainer Leslie Rodriguez said.
Though being a trainer isn’t a career pathway, students get real world experience.
“You get medical experience,” Rodriguez said. “You learn how to tape and remain calm in any situation.”