May 09, 2017

SLU Pre-professional AT Student Connects with the Profession at the NCAA Gymnastics Championships

New AT Student Blog Post - Emma Yonkers (SLU MAT Class of 2019)

The 2017 NCAA Women's Gymnastics Championships, held at Chaifetz Arena on the Saint Louis University campus, was a really cool site because I got to observe how athletes from all over the country treat injuries and take care of themselves overall. I watched a lot of warm ups and stretching, as well as stim treatments and ultrasounds. A lot of the gymnasts also wrapped their own ankles and wrists or the athletic trainer from their school helped them. I got to see all the different ways different ATs tape which was really interesting because I didn’t know there were that many different ways and wonder about the different benefits of each way.
This site was a little different from the other sites I have been to because this one had athletic trainers from all over the country. During some of the down time I got to talk with a lot of the athletic trainers from around St. Louis and learn about what they do at different places they work at like hospitals, high schools, and universities of varying sizes.

A lot of them didn’t even know each other so it was cool to see them interact and talk about the different situations they encounter in different settings. For example, one of the visiting athletic trainers who works at a high school hadn’t worked with a stim machine since grad school because the high school she works at doesn’t have one. She does things differently from one of the athletic trainers from a visiting university, who uses a very sophisticated machine as well as a GPS system that tracks the activities of soccer players they work with. Neither of these settings seemed better than the other, they just did things in very different ways and were interested to see what their peers at different places do.

This semester as a DO student I have learned a lot more than I thought I would. I’ve discovered the answers to questions I didn’t even know I had and been able to continuously build on them as I go. I am really glad we get to explore different places and get a feel for what we like by seeing all the different ways situations are handled.

This is one of a series of blog posts written by students entering the professional phase of the SLU AT Program as a part of MAT 3000 - AT Student Development II.

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