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Athletic Trainer Has Dual Roles As Healer and Confidante

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From early morning weight room workouts to practice, games and sometimes injuries, Rebecca Appelt’s job as an athletic trainer requires some long days and nights. But the hours she spends with her players build for a stronger bond on and off the court.

"You have to make sure you draw that line between friend and athletic trainer because you have to still have that respect and (be) seen as a coach," she said. "But it definitely makes it a lot easier because you know your athletes a lot better."

The training room, Appelt said, is an open space for athletes to have free conversation.

"They're athletes but you also have to look at them as a person," she said.

Athletic trainers are healthcare professionals who work with physicians and clinicians to provide patients with the highest quality of care. They provide preventative services, emergency care, therapeutic intervention and rehabilitation.

By combining preparation with a sharp eye for how to care for her athletes, Appelt is prepared for anything at any time.

"Injury prevention is what helps a team stay healthy and successful, so over my six years of athletic training that's what helped me develop that mindset of preparation and proactive instead of reactive."

Learn more about Ochsner's Athletic Training Outreach Program.

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