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Youth Athletes

Seton Hall University Athletic Training Student Speaks to Local High School About Perseverance and the Importance of Athletic Trainers

On Thursday, November 20, 2014, Athletic Training Student Cory Weissman told his story to the students at Oratory Preparatory School in Summit, New Jersey. Cory, a stand out basketball player in high school, suffered a stroke after his freshman basketball season at Gettysburg College that left. His story has been highlighted by ESPN College Game Day and ESPN Outside the Lines. A full length motion picture entitled “1000 to 1:  The Cory Weissman Story” was also produced.
 
                Cory’s message to the Oratory Prep students, faculty and staff was simple:  Don’t ever give up on your dreams and concentrate on taking the first step toward your ultimate goals. The stroke that Cory suffered came during a weight lifting session during the off season. Cory described getting a piercing headache that did not subside after 10 or so minutes and he decided to continue with the workout. He said he went to lift a dumbbell off the rack with his right arm and had no difficulty. He went to do the same with his left and could not lift the weight. Over the next few minutes, Cory’s body began to shut down and he and his teammate made their way towards the Athletic Training Room. His friend began yelling for help when an Athletic Trainer emerged from the room and ran to their aid.
 
                “The Athletic Trainer immediately began an assessment and called 911.” Cory recalled.  “She helped save my life. Without her help, who knows what would have happened.”
 

ATSNJ Continues to Raise Awareness for Juvenile Diabetes

In an effort to raise awareness of this disease, American Diabetes Month was established in November. The Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) holds an annual walk in various locations one month prior in an effort to raise funds, raise more awareness and bring those affected by diabetes together for one common cause.
 
According to the American Diabetes Association in 2012, 29.1 million Americans had diabetes while a staggering 86 million Americans aged 20 and older who were diagnosed with prediabetes. Diabetes however does not only affect adults in the United States but also children and adolescents. About 208,000 Americans under the age of 20 are estimated to have diagnosed diabetes.

 

Pascack Hills Student Pushes for New State School Mandate for Cardiac Emergencies

One teenager from Pascack Hills High School provided powerful testimony in Lodi on Tuesday on the importance of a new state mandate that requires high school staff and students be equipped and trained in life-saving techniques in the event of cardiac emergencies.

“I know that I’m standing here today because of an AED machine and individuals who were properly trained,” Anthony Cortazzo said of the automated external defibrillator.

Cortazzo, now a senior at the high school in Montvale, was at track practice in March when he collapsed and went into sudden cardiac arrest. Others on the field began to administer cardio-pulmonary resuscitation and Steve Papa, athletic trainer at the school, rushed to the field with an AED.

By the time an ambulance arrived, Cortazzo had a pulse and was breathing. Papa credits the “chain of survival” established at the school with the happy outcome.

Cortazzo suffered from a previously undetected congenital heart defect and soon underwent open heart surgery. He has been gaining strength since and plans to return to the football field in the next couple of weeks.

His story and others like it are rare but not uncommon, experts say, and have prompted the new legislation, which went into effect in September.

Every K-12 school in New Jersey is required to have at least one AED and staff trained in how to use it and perform CPR. A second law also requires high school students to be trained in CPR and AED use.

Ranney School (Tinton Falls, NJ) Awarded NATA Safe Sports School 1st Team Award

Ranney School’s athletic program is starting the school-year on an impressive note, being named the fourth school in New Jersey to receive the Safe Sports School Award from the National Athletic Trainers’ Association (NATA). The award is given to schools that have outlined specific actions that will lead an already existing athletic program to the highest safety standard for its players.

Ranney School earned a 1st Team Award, which is given to schools that act on all of the recommended and required elements for safety standards (2nd Team Awards are granted to schools that have completed only the required elements; see more details below). “The health and well-being of our students is our priority in the Athletic Department,” says Ranney’s Athletic Trainer Neila Buday, LAT. “This award provides great affirmation for our school. We have the people, policies and protocols in place to provide the safest environment for our student–athletes.” Ranney received a banner of recognition for its 1st Team Award, which will soon be on display on campus.

Oratory Prep School (Summit, NJ) Awarded NATA Safe Sports School 1st Team Award

Oratory Prep is the recipient of the National Athletic Trainers’ Association Safe Sports School award for its sports medicine program. The award champions safety and recognizes secondary schools that provide safe environments for student athletes. The award reinforces the importance of providing the best level of care, injury prevention and treatment.
 
“Oratory Prep is honored to receive this 1st Team recognition from NATA, and we remain committed to keeping our student athletes safe during physical education classes, team practices and games so they can accomplish their own goals of great competition, winning records, fair sportsmanship and good health. Our goal is to lead our athletics program to the highest safety standards for our players,” said Mr. Bob Costello, Head of School at Oratory.
 
Physical activity is very important for our youth, according to NATA president Jim Thornton, MS, ATC, CES. “There has been an increase in competitive sports, which are, unfortunately, not without risk. Brain injury/concussion, cardiac arrest, heat illness, exertional sickling, cervical spine fractures and other injuries and illnesses are potentially life-threatening.” Proper planning with proper equipment and personnel is vital to the safety of student athletes today, he notes.
 
"Receiving this award is truly an honor." Said Oratory Prep Head Athletic Trainer Allan Parsells. "The Athletics Department as a whole works so diligently to keep our student-athletes safe and this award recognizes that fact."
 

ASNJ Hall of Fame Member Dave Csillan Quoted in the article "NFL, College and High School Football Training Camps Combat Heat"

As football teams practice diligently for the long season ahead, they must first plan ways to beat the heat of August.
 
Training camp for the National Football League is in full swing as all 32 teams have begun practice sessions. Starting this month, collegiate and high school athletes will each begin practicing for their upcoming seasons.
 
While this summer has featured cooler weather in much of the country, as well as extreme heat in the Northwest, those conditions are likely to change in August. In the Southwest, no significant change is forecast.
 
"A shift in the jet stream is forecast during the middle of August that will lead to longer-lasting warm weather over much of the eastern two-thirds of the nation and less extreme heat over the Northwest," AccuWeather.com Meteorologist Alex Sosnowski reported.
 
Heat stroke is a major issue for athletes, particularly in high school athletics where one third of schools do not have an athletic trainer on staff, Douglas Casa, chief operating officer at the Korey Stringer Institute at the University of Connecticut, previously told AccuWeather.com.
 
Korey Stringer was a Pro Bowl offensive lineman for the Minnesota Vikings, who passed away in training camp in 2001, after suffering exertional heat stroke.
 

NCAA Settles Head Injury Lawsuit

The NCAA agreed Tuesday to settle a class-action head-injury lawsuit by creating a $70 million fund to diagnose thousands of current and former college athletes to determine if they suffered brain trauma playing football, hockey, soccer and other contact sports.
 
College sports' governing body also agreed to implement a single return-to-play policy spelling out how all teams must treat players who received head blows, according to a Tuesday filing in U.S. District Court in Chicago. Critics have accused the NCAA of giving too much discretion to hundreds of individual schools about when athletes can go back into games, putting them at risk.
 
Unlike a proposed settlement in a similar lawsuit against the NFL, this deal stops short of setting aside money to pay players who suffered brain trauma. Instead, athletes can sue individually for damages and the NCAA-funded tests to gauge the extent of neurological injuries could establish grounds for doing that.
 
The filing serves as notice to the federal judge overseeing the class-action case that the parties struck a deal after nearly a year of negotiations. In addition to football, ice hockey and soccer, the settlement also applies to all men and women who participated in basketball, wrestling, field hockey and lacrosse.
 
Joseph Siprut, the lead plaintiffs' attorney who spearheaded talks with the NCAA, said the sometimes-tough negotiations ended with a deal that will make college athletics safer.
 

Two ATSNJ Student Members Honored at NATA Annual Convention

Two student members of the Athletic Trainers’ Society of New Jersey were selected to receive scholarships at the Pinky Newell Scholarship and Student Leadership Breakfast during the National Athletic Trainers’ Association’s 65th Clinical Symposia & AT Expo in Indianapolis.  The breakfast was held the morning of Saturday, June 28th in the JW Marriot. NATA and ATSNJ Hall of Fame member, Charlie Thompson, provided the Keynote Address.
 

Selecting a Concussion Educator: Robb Rehberg Thinks Athletic Trainers Best Suited For The Role

With youth sports concussion safety laws in place in all 50 states, increased public awareness about concussions, and growing concern about the long-term effect of repetitive head impacts, the demand for concussion education, not just for parents, coaches, and athletes, but for health care professionals, such as primary care physcians and emergency room doctors, as well is at an all-time high, and promises to go even higher in the coming years.
 
But who should sports programs - whether school-based or independently run - hire to educate athletes, coaches, and parents about concussions? What kind of training, education and experience should they have?
 
We decided to ask a number of leading concussion educators.  First up is Robb Rehberg, Professor and Coordinator of Athletic Training Clinical Education at William Paterson University in Wayne, New Jersey.
 
MomsTEAM: Tell us a little bit about your training and education that prepared you to be a concussion educator?
 
Rehberg: My first lessons in dealing with concussion came during my days playing footbal in high school. Since that time, concussions have always been an area of interest for me. I'm an athletic trainer by trade, and my undergraduate degree is in athletic training. I also earned a PhD in Health Science Education and Research, which has helped me not only understand the research, but be able to present it to various groups in a way that is easily understood.
 

President Obama Announces NATA/NFL Collaboration

The NATA, in collaboration with the Professional Football Athletic Trainers’ Society, will support a national initiative to place athletic trainers in underserved high schools in NFL markets during the 2014 football season. The National Football League Foundation and NFL teams will provide $1 million, with NATA adding another $125,000, to improve the health and welfare of those student athletes. President Barack Obama announced this initiative during the White House Healthy Kids and Concussion Summit in Washington, DC, this morning.

 
“I’m proud to announce a number of new partnerships and commitments from the people in this room that are going to help us move the ball forward on this issue,” Obama said. “… The NFL is committing $25 million of new funding over the next three years to test strategies like creating health and safety forums for parents, and they’re building on the program piloted by my own Chicago Bears to get more [athletic] trainers at high school games.”
 
The White House released a fact sheet about the event that further detailed our collaboration with the NFL:

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