For those of you who don't know, March is National Athletic Training month. My high school's athletic trainer saved my life back in 2007 when she noticed a right-sided gaze, indicating a brain bleed, while I was suffering from second impact syndrome (it's a long story, but you can find the deets in episode 1). To show my appreciation for athletic trainers, episode 67 highlights the incredible work athletic trainers do day in and day out to protect athletes. This week's interview is with Allan Parsells, head athletic trainer at Oratory Prep School, which is an all boys catholic school in Summit, NJ. The focus of our discussion centers around the difficult decision athletic trainers face on a daily basis, which is when to start and when to sit an injured athlete. Where is the line drawn?
Allan Parsells, MS, LAT, ATC, ITAT earned a Bachelor's degree in Liberal Studies from the University of Scranton in 2008 before earning a Bachelor's degree in Athletic Training and a Master's degree in Clinical Athletic Training from East Stroudsburg University of Pennsylvania (The Princeton of the Poconos) in 2010. Allan has been the Head Athletic Trainer at Oratory Prep since August of 2013. Prior to his time at Oratory, he was employed at The College of New Jersey (Ewing, New Jersey) and Stevens Institute of Technology (Hoboken, New Jersey) as an Assistant Athletic Trainer. Allan is co-owner of Premier Sports Medicine of New Jersey, LLC, which provides athletic trainers to youth sports organizations, camps, clinics, showcases, and schools. In addition, Premier Sports Medicine of New Jersey is a Licensed Training Provider for the American Red Cross, a sub-distributor of Philips Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs) and AED supplies, and provider of ImPACT Baseline and Post-Injury Concussion Testing. Allan serves his profession as the Public Relations Chairman of the Athletic Trainers' Society of New Jersey (ATSNJ). He has been in this role since February 2013 and has received 3 National Athletic Trainers' Association Public Relations awards during his tenure. In addition to being a certified and licensed athletic trainer, Allan is also a certified instructor for the American Red Cross and also holds the ImPACT Trained Athletic Trainer (ITAT) certification. Allan is a member of the National Athletic Trainers' Association and is an avid New York Mets fan (Tebow!). He resides in Whitehouse Station, New Jersey with his wife, Katie and two children Aidan and Norah.
A list of topics we discuss can be found below:
- Can outsourced athletic trainers at schools be as effective as a school's full-time athletic trainer schools? Which is better?
- Communication with guidance counselors, teachers and coaches is key for all athletic trainers.
- Lacking communication with these parties? Allan tells us how to build those relationship if you don’t already have them.
- Provide information and resources.
- IS your school an NATA Safe Sports School? Oratory Prep is! Allan teaches us about the necessary requirements to earn this recognition. More information can be found in the link above.
- Allan tells us what the difference between hurt and injured means to him.
- How to building trust with athletes to improve the likelihood of injury reporting.
- Allan uses rehab goals, and functional testing.
"Be great at the things that take no talent".
- Why there is always something you can be doing to be getting better.
- Allan is a strong believer in injured athletes staying involved with their team to avoid feelings of isolation.
- How to fight the culture of toughness at an all boys school.
- Jordy Nelson Ribs Episode reference.
- Implications reviewing penalties would have on the game of football.
- Facebook video (see below) one of my friends posted, comment with your thoughts on the hit.
- Social media’s impact on his job.
- The Web MD effect.
- Why Allan has a no phone policy in training room.
- Athletes fear of missing out.
- Distinguishing Athletic Trainers from Personal Trainers
- Why athletes tend to look at him in a different way than they do their teacher, coach etc. and where he draws the line.
- Faith's role in injury recovery at a catholic school.
- Exemplary athlete attitudes example of on of his basketball athletes who overcame and ACL injury only to suffer a meniscal tare upon his return and why this kid's attitude is contagious.
- How parent interactions effect his job.
- New Jersey 2017 pitch count rule.
- What athletes should be doing to stay healthy.
- Lower extremity stretching protocol (see below)
- Playing multiple sports, which will also make you a better athlete.