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Britney Webb is a former San Marcos High School trainer before transitioning into her role as a senior lecturer at the Texas State’s Athletic Training Division. Webb is currently serving on the Texas Advisory Board of Athletic Trainers.
Photo provided by Texas State University.

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The official proclamation made by Texas Governor Greg Abbott declaring that the month of March will be recognized as Athletic Training Month. 2023 marks 50 years of athletic trainers being licensed as health professionals. The goal of the proclamation is to recognize and help further the progress athletic trainers have made in their goal of caring for student athletes.
Official Proclamation by Texas Governor Greg Abbott

Athletic Training Month honors Athletic Trainers

Wednesday, March 29, 2023

The month of March represents Athletic Training Month in the state following a proclamation issued by Texas Governor Greg Abbott.

The proclamation had a great meaning to Britney Webb, a former San Marcos athletic trainer and now Athletic Training Division senior lecturer at Texas State University as part of the Health and Human Performance Center, who looks to promote the importance of the need of athletic trainers throughout athletic programs.

“It means a great deal to the athletic training profession that the governor signed this proclamation,” Webb said. “He also congratulated us on being licensed in the state of Texas for nearly 50 years. His support brings more recognition to our profession since we are still new to the medical profession. It also helps to educate both people and the state of Texas on what the role of an athletic trainer is.”

Though the stereotypical image is someone who is seen on a football field wrapping a player’s ankle, the role of an athletic trainer is much more than that.

“We are there to help prevent, recognize, evaluate and rehabilitate injuries,” Webb said. “When we are looking at all of that and dealing with those things, the coaches are not having to worry about that. We are there for the athletes and help the team to remain and stay healthy. Once an injury does occur, we are there to help them get on the field.”

No matter if they work for the Dallas Cowboys, Texas State Bobcats, San Marcos Rattlers or the San Marcos Academy Bears, the athletic trainer is a critical job that must be taken seriously.

“Athletic trainers play an important role in the athletic program either in the high school or the college level,” Webb said. “If you can afford an athletic program, you can afford an athletic trainer because they are always going to be there and always help.”

One of the reasons athletic training is critical of a school is because of their availability to the student athletes themselves no matter the sport.

“We are not just the football athletic trainer, but rather everyone’s athletic trainer at the high school level,” Webb said. “For the athletes, we may be the only health care available to them. So it is important that we be there because we may be the only kind of health care to them.”

Not only do they help the athletes recover from injury but also protect their institution from off the field issues.

“If you don’t have someone there to cover and help, especially in an emergency, that could be a lawsuit for some schools,” Webb said. “That is why is it important to have an athletic training program because of the potential of a detrimental injury that could involved the school being sued.”

Having started her career in the early 90s, Webb has seen some positive changes in how schools handle their athletic trainers.

“I started in 1991 when I first entered college studying athletic training,” Webb said. “At that particular time, most of the 5A and 4A (now classified as 6A and 5A) schools had only one athletic trainer who was usually a male. What we see now is that the 6A, 5A, 4A, 3A, and even the 2A and 1A schools have at least one trainer. The majority of the 6A and 5A schools will now have as many as three to four athletic trainers on hand. There are more female athletic trainers in the profession nowadays than when I started and now middle schools are starting to make hires.

But schools are not the only ones that use athletic trainers.

“What you are seeing is more and more people being hired,” Webb said. “Through the middle school level all the way up to the pros. You are also seeing athletic trainers are in the industry so Toyota Car Factory now employs athletic trainers as well as Amazon.”

But despite all the positive progress the athletic trainers have seen over the past decade, Webb believes more can still be done.

“School Districts need to realize their athletes need healthcare,” Webb said. “If you have two or three athletic trainers on staff that’s great but if you are a 6A school with 1,500 athletes, ten sports, varsity, junior varsity and freshman teams, school districts need to look at life work balance for athletic trainers and hiring appropriate coverage in those sports. We are one person and we can’t be at 17 different events in one night. We may work a 40 hour work week before Wednesday so helping that work-life balance is one way school districts can help.”

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