Thoughts on Leadership & the Penn State Scandal

I came across an article on Leadership and lessons we can learn from the Penn State scandal by Chris Bryant of Chris Bryant Presents, Inc.. Some thoughts include: ” The questions for leaders is not “will you make a difference?” The real question is “What difference will you make?” Regarding culture, its’ what leads when no one is watching. If you permit it, you promote it. Make sure the culture you create drives behavior that helps people act with integrity and execute the strategy. Build it before you need it. Develop the habit of acting in alignment with a clear and consistant value system. Deep trust takes time to build and is earned through repeated positive experience. Accountability is about two things: paying attention + taking action. Leadership is the courage to act when the situation calls for it. Champions do it differently. Greatness comes from going beyond what others are willing to do. The path of minimum requirement leads to mediocrity at best and negligence at worst. Problems do not get better if you ignore them to cover them up. The longer you allow a problem to exist, the worse it becomes and the more severe the consequences.” For more on this visit: www.chrisbryantpresents.com

Let us never forget!

I just returned following a service opportunity for a 9-11 Remembrance ceremony. It involved a number of projects to serve the military & children as well as a ceremony to honor our local first responders and those who have lost their lives on 9-11. Let us never forget others, those who sacrifice daily for our great country and what a great nation we live in. Take the time to serve others
and truly love your neighbor daily.

Ethics & the Athletic Trainer

This evening I had the opportunity to speak to a group of athletic trainers & health care professionals on multiple topics, one being ethics in our profession. It’s not something we talk a lot about but hopefully we practice every day, good ethics that is! It involves doing what is right, demonstrating character, integrity, putting our honesty to the test in carrying out our beliefs regardless of consequences. It’s more than knowing what is right but actually doing what is right. Sadly, there have been fellow professionals found guilty of unethical behavior who have faced the consequences for their actions. We are involved in a service profession which demands the utmost trust from the clients & professionals we work with. Let us guard that trust and excel in all we do.

Verlon Dorminey celebrates win #200

Yesterday marked the 200th career victory by coach Verlon Dorminey of Trinity Christian Academy. I’ve had the pleasure to work with him for over 16 years through championships as well as tough seasons. He’s a coach who really cares for his athletes, tough but fair and more concerned as how they mature, handle life and know God. Congratulations to Verlon Dorminey.

Another Season Begins

Beginning today probably my 44th football season on the sidelines but fully in the game so to speak. Beginning in High school with literally a tin pail and ladle for water & a roll of tape to many of the modern innovations of sports medicine. Still athletes are still kids playing sports and coaches trying to mold young men into finely tuned machines, all an imperfect science. It’s been my pleasure to take care of many from the stars to those just out to have a good time and be “on the team.” I’ve had legendary coaches and those just trying to grow and learn to build a program. For all that I’m truly blessed. Thankful too for a most supportive wife and family who have allowed me to enjoy such a fine profession in serving others. So as we begin today, I’m still getting the water ready to hydrate the kids (still a valuable preventive task), treating & taping in preparation for the next big event, and hopefully helping someone in some way. Are you ready for some football?

A visit with Trinity Christian Athlete Jamie Harper

Recently had the opportunity to travel with Trinity Christian Academy Football (Bus Ride a whole different story) to Louisville KY for a opening season game. On the way we stopped to watch the Tennessee Titans play the Cardinals in a pre-season game courtesy of former TCA athlete Jamie Harper. Jamie is a classy young man who is grateful for his roots at TCA and I had the good fortune of serving as his Athletic Trainer, he excelled there as well as 3 years at Clemson.

Florida’s New Concussion Law & Heat Guidelines

This football and sports season offered change in the form of new concussion legislation regarding safe return to play following a concussion. The FHSAA also implemented Heat & Practice guidelines for the first 14 days of sports which applies to all sports. On the whole, both seemed to be well accepted but provides a learning curve for coaches to adhere to the policies. I never had so many athletes to ask what time it was or how long practice was going? Also, a great opportunity for the education of parents, athletes, coaches and administrations about these two important issues. Hopefully, a safer sports environment will be created for these athletes. Will the decreased practice time or number of teaching sessions actually affect the quality of any programs? Will the injury rate be reduced? In reality, it was evident that kids still need good nutrition and hydration information and a means to implement as some are constrained by time, family or economic issues. Having kids come to practice and attempt to perform at a high level is reason for concern and compromises safety & performance. Heat illness is preventable and constant encouragement and education is needed to help promote good hydration to make a vital part of any athletes skill set. Have a safe and successful season!

Physicals vs. screenings?

It’s that time of year to have your annual pre-participation physical or screening. Know the difference that a screening may just be a review and clearance for sports participation. It does not fully replace an annual physical with your primary care MD which is more comprehensive. Regardless, with a screening make sure that it involves a heart evaluation to pick up any irregularities that may be present such as a murmur. Remember that you need to be as honest as you can as the MD is not a mindreader but can pick up things to look for through good questions. Parents need to take care in answering questions to provide accurate information. A proper evaluation involves a good medical history, proper questions, honest answers and a thorough evaluation. Don’t take shortcuts with your health. Have a safe and successful season.

To Stretch or not to Stretch?

Disagreement are present on the benefits of static vs. dynamic stretching. My suggestion is to prior to working out do a more dynamic or functional movement involved stretch such as a lunge or progression though a range with some resistance as it helps to warm the muscle, create blood flow and is more like the activity you are performing. In the locker room before you go out or after your workout you can do a static stretch ( hold in a stretch position) is perhaps best performed here. What are your thoughts?

Take a Bath & wash your hands!

Sounds obvious but proper hygiene is essential to preventing the spread of disease and create wound infections. Simply washing the hands frequently makes a big difference. Athletes, especially adolescents don’t shower as frequently as we think, especially in high school locker room settings Fear of teasing, embarrassment, just being a teen, or not thinking about it are often used as excuses for not properly practicing good hygiene. Wearing clean clothes for each workout, changing your clothes, washing them in soap & water. Don’t share towels, clothing, razors, and anything where blood or body fluids are present. Sounds simple but this time of the year in athletics is ripe for the spread of infections. MRSA or infections can cause unnecessary time loss for an athletes participation. What looks like a infected hair follicle, bug bite, or pimple if not properly treated can lead to infection and costly medical bills. Make sure wounds are covered & properly dressed, cleaned daily and see a physician if in doubt. Never leave open wounds uncovered as all kinds of germs are looking for a place to grow & play. Germs especially like warm, dark, moist places to live, get the point? Even scabbed over wounds need a dressing because if they get opened again it destroys the healthy tissue and becomes an open wound. Take the time to get it covered, you’ll prevent long term consequences.