ThedaCare Orthopedic Care Employees Work with Local High Schools
Cassandra Glodowski, a licensed athletic trainer at Waupaca High School, said people often misunderstand what she does. “People hear the word ‘trainer’ and they think you work at a local gym helping people with their workouts, but that’s not it at all,” said Glodowski, who started at Waupaca High School in 2015.
Licensed athletic trainers, who are sometimes referred to LATs, are highly qualified health care professionals who work with physicians to provide preventative services, emergency care, clinical diagnosis, therapeutic intervention and rehabilitation of injuries and medical conditions.
The Waupaca and Weyauwega-Fremont school districts contract with ThedaCare Orthopedic Care to provide LAT services. The trainers attend practices and games where they treat injured students. They also work with injured students on a treatment plan and provide safety and injury prevention information to coaches and players.
“Licensed athletic trainers receive a lot of training to help athletes with any injuries they are facing,” said Gary Premo, the LAT at Weyauwega-Fremont High School. “We attend games in case there are injuries to evaluate and provide treatment. We work right at the school and work with injured students on a treatment plan, whether it’s icing, rest or sharing some stretching exercises.”
LATs are licensed medical professionals who are required to take continuing education courses. Glodowski and Premo are both board certified credentialed, which means they passed a national accredited program test.
Premo joined ThedaCare in 2008 and has a bachelor’s degree in athletic training from the University of New Mexico. He also is a certified Kinesio taping practitioner, ImPACT Trained Athletic Trainer (ITAT) Concussion Program and an emergency medical technician (EMT).
Glodowski has a bachelor’s degree in applied health science with a concentration in athletic training and physical therapy and certificates in fitness management and coaching from the University of Wisconsin-Parkside. She also has a master’s degree in athletic training and is working towards her certified strength and conditioning certification.
Since the trainers work with athletes from a variety of sports, they need to treat everything from a suspected concussion to a pulled muscle. While different sports have different injuries, Premo said there are some commonalities.
“Most sports put a beating on kids’ knees and ankles due to running or jumping,” he said. “There are also overuse injuries caused when the kids play the same sport for most of the year without doing any cross-training to build up strength in other parts of their bodies.”
Gladowski said proper nutrition and hydration are also important for student athletes and she tries to bring up the subject whenever she can. “Eating a lot of junk food does not provide your body with the fuel it needs for you to perform your best,” she said.
For more than 100 years, ThedaCare™ has been committed to finding a better way to deliver serious and complex healthcare to patients throughout Northeast Wisconsin. The organization serves over 200,000 patients annually and employs more than 6,800 healthcare professionals throughout the region. ThedaCare has seven hospitals located in Appleton, Neenah, Berlin, Waupaca, Shawano, New London and Wild Rose as well as 34 clinics in nine counties. ThedaCare is the first in Wisconsin to be a Mayo Clinic Care Network Member, giving our specialists the ability to consult with Mayo Clinic experts on a patient’s care. ThedaCare is a non-profit healthcare organization with a level II trauma center, comprehensive cancer treatment, stroke and cardiac programs as well as a foundation dedicated to community service. The ThedaCare Regional Cancer Center in Appleton opened in February. For more information, visit www.thedacare.org or follow ThedaCare on Facebook and Twitter.