HUBER HEIGHTS, Ohio (WDTN) – As athletic programs at high schools across the Miami Valley return to the field, everyone is getting acclimated to the new guidelines.
This week, local high schools continued into Phase II of practices and are allowed to have contact. The role of athletic trainers has evolved to treating injuries while also keeping their eyes open for COVID-19 symptoms.
“When the athletes come on campus they’re asked to come in a mask, when they get here they get their temperatures taken and they do the symptom checks,” said Dominique Starr, athletic trainer at Premier Health.
Starr is in her 8th year as an athletic trainer with Premier. Since sports programs were halted in March, she’s gone from packed training rooms to treating injuries on a more strict schedule.
“Sometimes we can have up to eight or a higher amount of athletes in here at a time whether we’re preparing them for practice or they’re doing rehab, getting treatment. Now we’re stopping them at the door and saying ‘hey we’re only allowing two people in at a time,'” she said.
On the field at Wayne High School, coaches are also making changes.
“These things are the biggest things we have to implement for our kids. We make sure they do it while they’re checking in, when we take their temperature, when they’re not doing activities, we make sure they have them on and stay six feet away,” said Andre Cokes, assistant Head football Coach at Wayne High School.
The student-athletes are embracing the socially distant practices and say they just hope to be able to play again this fall.
“The kids are enjoying it. With that time off I think it made them a little more hungry,” Cokes said.
“Having that time off just made us more humble and hungry to come out here and work harder and follow whatever they say just to keep our hopes up for the season,” said Cam Fancher, a quarterback at Wayne High School.
Nearly 40 local schools have athletic trainers through Premier Health.
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