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Tri-County Hospital will celebrate National Athletic Training Month in March

March is National Athletic Training Month and Tri-County Hospital is raising awareness about the service athletic trainers provide to our communities. Paul Cullen, certified athletic trainer at TCH, is shown here working with student athlete, Britta Torgerson, Henning.

March is National Athletic Training Month and Tri-County Hospital Sports Medicine is raising awareness of the importance of providing quality medical coverage to area high school student athletes.

Competing in athletics can be rough on an athlete's body. But there are athletic trainers to help keep athletes in optimal health. Certified athletic trainers are experts at recognizing, treating, and preventing musculoskeletal injuries.

Daily duties of an athletic trainer include:

• Provide physical medicine and rehabilitation services

• Prevent, diagnose, treat and rehabilitate injuries (acute and chronic)

• Coordinate care with physicians and other health care professionals

• Work in schools, colleges, professional sports, clinics, hospitals, corporations, industry, military, performing arts

"Athletic trainers are experts in their field. They meet qualifications set by the Board of Certification, Inc., and adhere to the requirements of a state licensing board," explained Shelagh Carlson, TCH rehabilitation manager. "The word 'trainer' alone does not encompass all the knowledge and skills athletic trainers obtain."

TCH rehabilitation offers a free sports medicine clinic from 8-8:30 a.m. Monday through Friday for student athletes all year long. This clinic, for elementary and high school student athletes, includes a free evaluation of a sports-related injury from a certified athletic trainer, physical or occupational therapist, and if necessary, a free evaluation by a physician.

For more information on the athletic training services provided at Tri-County Hospital, contact Paul Cullen, certified athletic trainer, at (218) 631-7475.