Athletic trainers jobs’ more difficult with coronavirus concerns

Published on August 16, 2020

By 123news

Athletic trainers have a challenging job in the best of times but are into new territory as they try to prepare athletes for upcoming seasons in the midst of a pandemic.

“It’s rough,” said Kim Velotta, Edgewood High School athletic trainer.

She said a lot more sanitization is the order of the day.

“We can’t do all our regular [routines],” Velotta said.

She said they can only have on person in the training room at any given time because of social distancing requirements.

One of the biggest challenges is making sure the athletes drink enough water because the school is no longer able to provide water because of potential coronavirus contamination.

“Do we want heat stroke or COVID?” Velotta said.

Velotta said they are trying to get creative and create or buy a cooler that can be activated with a pedal so it would not need to be touched. The athletes are supposed to bring their own water but don’t always bring enough, she said.

Grand Valley athletic trainer Denise Fisher also said it has been challenging but encouraging as well. “

The school has been very supportive,” she said.

“I don’t even know how to describe [the COVIF-19 challenges],” she said.

One positive side of the experience is the athletes have had to take on more responsibility, bringing water and sanitizing to name a few, and seem to be working harder.

“My day-to-day has not changed and I still provide all my day-to-day athletic training responsibilities,.” Fisher said.

She said she has been doing a variety of training with coaches to be prepared for medical emergencies such as cardiac conditions because of some studies that indicate the virus can lead to heart problems.

Fisher said she is fortunate that she has a larger training room that was formally a class room.

“I can have four people [with proper social distancing],” she said.

As the fall athletic seasons move along Fisher said she is planning for possible outside taping sessions if injuries start to pile up.

“They are talking about getting a tarp in case it rains,” she said.

Fisher said the athletes are being asked to social distance during games and dots have been placed on the sidelines to help make that goal a reality. She said athletes not in the game were asked to find a dot to stand on during a scrimmage among their own team.

It is a whole new world.