Avera Medical Minute: Athlete Safety and athletic training

Published: Aug. 22, 2022 at 10:29 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (Dakota News Now) - When athletes at Central Lyon take the field or the court, they know they’re in good hands.

That’s because Brandon Church, the school’s athletic trainer, is at every practice and every game.

“It’s kind of reassuring that we have someone as good as Brandon to watch us,” said Outside Linebacker and Central Lyon Senior Kayden VanBerkum.

Desta Hoogendoorn, a basketball player, and Central Lyon junior, agrees.

“It’s very comforting to know that Brandon is there during the games and practices and if you ever get hurt, he’s there,” she said.

Student-athletes VanBerkum and Hoogendoorn have both benefited from Church’s medical expertise.

“It was the West Sioux Game, we were up about 30ish,” said VanBerkum. “Ran up the hole, and then one of their guys went straight for my ankles, and that was about it.”

When VanBerkum broke his leg last season, Church was there. And when Hoogendoorn’s Patellar tendonitis sidelined her for a month, Church rehabbed her back to full health.

“It kind of flared up so I went to Brandon he gave me some rehab, we did some training, and stuff,” she said. “Just made my knee feel more like I could play without pain.”

Church says looking after these student-athletes is a job he doesn’t take lightly.

“I think having an athletic trainer at the school is super important for the health of the student-athletes, these kids are more or fewer kids that I see every day, so learn to care about them and want what’s best for them,” he said.

“It’s not just the players who benefit from Church’s presence on the sidelines, the coaching staff appreciate having him around too.

“It takes the pressure off of us from taping to assessing the athletes on the field,” said Central Lyon head Football Coach Curtis Eben.

With Church around to take care of the physical well-being of the players, coaches can focus more on the mental side of the game, to get their athletes in the right headspace.

“The partnership we have with Avera, especially the training staff, is a huge addition to our school,” said Coach Eben.

Church’s work on the sidelines, in the locker rooms, and on the field when there’s an injury is invaluable regarding athlete safety and well-being.

“It’s very important, especially when guys have an injury like that, where they get hurt on the field and they realize they can’t get back in but they don’t know what’s going on, they have me there to calm them down, help them go through it,” said Church.

For more information on athlete safety, visit www.Avera.org/MedicalMinute