An Athletic Trainer and Dietician Join Forces
In Oregon, an athletic trainer has paired up with a dietician to give high school student-athletes presentations about nutrition.
As an outreach athletic trainer and Sports Medicine Coordinator for Saint Alphonsus Medical Center-Ontario (Ore.), Allyson Lee Barton, LAT, MSBA/HCM, is always looking for new ways to educate student-athlete about health and optimum performance. By partnering with Deborah Hampton, RD, a dietician in the Ontario (Ore.) area, Barton now also provides them with the most updated information on nutrition.
As explained in an article from the Argus Observer, Barton teamed up with Hampton this past fall. Hampton visits schools covered by Saint Alphonsus and offers nutritional presentations for athletes in all sports.
“When I first came here, I wanted to improve the health of each person in the area one student at a time,” Barton said. The information aligns with what is offered by the Oregon School Activities Association and the National Athletic Trainers Association.
“We can always use extra help when it comes to the nutrition of our athletes,” Barton said. “The more we’re all saying the same language for these athletes, the more it’ll sink in.”
Presentations focus on eating before and after exercise, eating on the road, and how to hydrate properly.
“We need to get kids off of energy drinks, which they drink instead of sports drinks,” Barton said. “It’s an epidemic with high school kids. When you take in that caffeine and aren’t drinking sports drinks or water it can lead to heart arrhythmia and seizures. These kids have too much caffeine and sugar in their system.”
The information provided is not limited to certain sports or only varsity teams, and junior varsity teams and middle school students often attend the sessions.
“We want to be able to teach these younger kids how to take care of themselves,” Barton said. “It’s a prevention program.”
Barton has a passion for working with rural student-athletes, having been raised on a farm in upstate New York. She was introduced to athletic training in college when she was a track and field athlete.
“I pulled a hip flexor and was limping around,” Barton said. “My teammate told me to go to the training room, and I was like, ‘What’s that?’ I could barely walk going in, and I could walk out no problem. I was sold.”
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