They do tons of paperwork, keep up with the latest research, and play an integral role in policy-making, always with safety foremost in their thinking.
Trainers run triage areas and make split-second decisions, so they must listen intentionally, observe scrupulously, and remain calm, cool, and ice-water-in-their-veins unflappable.
That’s not all.
Trainers must understand well the concept of competitive spirit and do all within their power to return injured athletes to the arena. That said, they can’t take risks or walk the edge. They must always play it safe. That’s because they care.
Athletic trainers are very much behind-the-scenes men and women. They labor in anonymity (except to those entrusted to their care) and perform publicly only when they rush onto the field or court or track to minister to an injured competitor.
NATA – the National Athletic Trainers’ Association – has proclaimed March to be National Athletic Training Month.
If you’re involved with Collegiate’s athletic program, though, and have the good fortune to work with Shannon Winston and Jason Engle, you know that every month carries that designation.
Why? Simple. Shannon and Jason are second to none. Absolutely. Unequivocally.
But, hey, don’t listen just to me. Hear what several long-time colleagues have to say.
I always feel safe knowing that I am getting quality instruction when it comes to the health of my athletes. Shannon and Jason develop relationships with the athletes, and these relationships allow them to diagnose their injuries and then advise the individual and the coach. They lay out a recovery plan that is in the best interest of the athlete, and they make this plan known to each coach.
Varsity Softball Coach
Jason and Shannon are terrific. They are tireless, upbeat, and incredibly knowledgeable. They always have the best interests of our players and students at the forefront of their care. I work most closely with Jason in the fall on the Robins Campus. He does a great job providing immediate care, rehabbing athletes, and coordinating with physicians as necessary. His sound counsel helps keep our players on the field as appropriate. Both he and Shannon are also cool under pressure, able to assess injuries thoroughly and efficiently providing players, parents, and coaches direction on next steps. Shannon and Jason are also excellent liaisons with medical teams who work with players and students who are dealing with concussions or symptoms. Their excellent guidance helps families and teachers navigate the treatment protocols.
Boys Varsity Soccer Coach
Shannon and Jason are the best. They have kept my (and all of our) teams as competition-ready as possible, especially this year when they treated literally half our team every practice to enable them to remain healthy and play. Shannon and Jason are calm and level-headed, so knowledgeable, and so willing to work with anybody to help them. They never seem to have a bad day.
Girls Varsity Basketball Coach
Shannon and Jason are the dynamic duo. They are consummate professionals, down-to-earth, poised in every situation, teachers in every way, and tops in their field. We are so lucky to have both of them at Collegiate.
Director of Athletics
Varsity Field Hockey Coach
We work with Jason (at the Robins Campus), and he has been tremendous. He works with several different girls and was especially helpful for Rennie Spotts (last year) as she returned from an ACL injury. He worked closely with her surgeon, and she scored the winning penalty kick in the state semifinals. She is back at full speed this spring due to hard work, her surgeon, her physical therapist, and Jason.
Girls Varsity Soccer Coach
As coaches, we are fortunate to have Jason and Shannon for support. Their role is crucial to the ongoing needs of today’s athlete: their general well-being as well as injury recovery. The students know that they have a resource not only after school but also throughout the day.
Varsity Football Coach
I have so much respect for Shannon and Jason. The amount of patience they have in caring for every single student who walks through the training room door is exceptional. They pour a lot of energy, compassion, and care into every discomfort, injury, and soreness they hear about from students on a regular basis. We are so fortunate to have them here at Collegiate.
Girls Varsity Track Coach
Shannon and Jason have the ability to balance a grandparent’s sensitivity, kindness, and compassion with anxious kids with the necessary toughness to push kids to their limits and encourage them to extend themselves. Sports are so much about embracing discomfort. Shannon and Jason strike a really good balance of pushing kids and encouraging them at the same time while making sure that they’re safe.
Boys Varsity Lacrosse Coach