December 1, 2014

The Importance of Work-Life Balance for Athletic Trainers

An interesting article was recently brought to our attention that focuses on work-life balance of athletic trainers working in the Division 1 collegiate setting.  Because these athletic trainers often work more than forty hours a week, finding a balance between their work life and home/social life becomes an essential part of their life. “Fulfillment of Work-Life Balance From the Organization Perspective: A Case Study” was researched and written by Stephanie Mazerolle and Ashley Goodman.  This particular case study focuses on a group of athletic trainers that work together at a division 1 collegiate university.  Through surveys and journals written by the athletic trainers involved in the study, the authors found that there are three areas that are particularly important for maintaining a healthy work life balance.  These areas include family-oriented and supportive work environment, non-work outlets, and individualistic strategies.  Family-oriented and supportive work environment is defined as a workplace that promotes work-life balance by involving co-workers that have similar goals within in their profession and personal life.  One essential aspect that works towards establishing this type of environment is having a supervisor that does not “mirco-manage”, which allows the athletic trainers to feel as though they have power over their schedule and abilities to meet their personal and professional goals.  These goals can also be accomplished when employees share their workloads and responsibilities.  By covering for one another when schedules change or things come up, co-works help each other to establish a healthy work-life balance.  Having interests outside of athletic training is also an important aspect of a healthy work-life balance as well as creating separation between their work and those non-work outlets.  By having interests outside of the training room, athletic trainers are better able to come back to work rejuvenated and committed to their job.  A positive, healthy non-work outlet is physical activity such as exercise, which has found to be lacking in many athletic trainers. Lastly, individualistic strategies are important for creating a healthy work-life balance.  This involves having their own strategies for managing their responsibilities.  A commonly used strategy for prioritizing is making to do lists.  In conclusion, this article highlights areas that are important for athletic trainers to establish a healthy work-life balance.  These strategies involve relying on their fellow co-workers and supervisor, having interests outside of the training room, and determining which strategies work best for the individual in regards to organizing and prioritizing their responsibilities. If all of these strategies and techniques sound vaguely familiar, then you have realized the article was researched and written about our own LSU Athletic Training Staff! To learn more about work-life balance and the factors that contribute to a healthy one view the article below.

Thanksgiving with the Tigers

With another Thanksgiving celebration come and gone, we are happy to announce that the Athletic Training Student Organization Alpha Tau Sigma was able to provide another a child in need with everything on his Christmas wish list.  Nine-year-old Joshua was the child had the opportunity to collect for. On his list he included a basketball, toys, and clothes.  The athletic training students were able to gather enough money to buy Joshua a Nerf gun with forty extra Nerf rounds, walkie talkies, a basketball, a full warm up suit, two t-shirts, a signed LSU basketball poster, and a sweat band.  The athletic training students were able to spend an evening with Joshua and watch his reaction as he opened his gifts.  Joshua was very excited by all of his gifts, and the athletic training students were able to take pride in the fact that they brighten this little boy’s day and Thanksgiving/ Christmas.  The athletic teams also had the opportunity to provide gifts for a child in need.  It is this time of year that makes you realize how truly blessed you are and allows you to be thankful that you are able to share those blessings with those less fortunate. 

LSU's Annual Halloween Boozar

LSU Athletic Department's annual Boozar was held on October 26, 2014. The Boozar is a community event that allows kids and their families to come out and enjoy the Halloween spirit with some of LSU’s athletes and athletic trainers. Hope Wildharber, one of our second year athletic training students, said, “It’s a fun event to have the kids interact and get to know us.” The athletic trainers had a pumpkin ring toss game set up in front of the PMAC that was a lot of fun for the children. Laura McKowen, our president of Alpha Tau Sigma, said that she had, "a really great time dressing up, seeing the kids in their costumes, and spending time with them as well."  Needless to say, this year’s Boozar was a successful and a fun time for all those involved!

October Student of the Month

Congratulations to Erin Holle for being our October Student Athletic Trainer of the Month. Erin is a second year student originally from Connecticut.  She had her first clinical rotation at Central High School during her first year in the program and now she has brought her knowledge and skills to LSU’s Track and Field/ Cross Country Program. Erin works hard every day and takes it upon herself to continually improve her knowledge in athletic training. One of her preceptors, Derek Calvert, stated that, "Her leadership skills allow her to be a great role model for the other students in the athletic training room." He went on to say, "She has full potential to become a great athletic trainer." Good work this month Erin, keep it up!