By Meg Weathersby | firstname.lastname@example.org
Photo by Dave Castagno
It takes three trainers to get the Flagler College athletes prepared for competition day. Jennifer Rinnert, Jim Simmons, and J.J. Wetherington make up the “J squad”.
On game day the fans see a well-prepared and well-recovered team, but what the fan doesn’t see is all the hard work and hours spent on rehab that it takes to get there. The Flagler College Athletic Trainers work 60-65 hours a week so that the athletes can compete in top physique. Even when one sport season starts to wind down, the trainer’s work is never finished.
“I just had ankle surgery and all three of the trainers have been happy to treat me whenever I go to the training room,” said Flagler College volleyball player, Katie Beale.
The three athletic trainers at Flagler do more than just treat injured athletes. Each trainer is assigned certain teams that they are to travel with and treat primarily. Another way to define the job of a trainer is “sports injury specialists” said Wetherington.
“I’m happy here, it was my goal to work with Division II School and I kind of just ended up in the right place at the right time,” Rinnert said.
Rinnert is the head athletic trainer and is responsible for women’s soccer, basketball and softball. As the head trainer, her responsibilities range from, “treating injuries to dealing with insurance, scheduling, filing paper work and meeting with other administrative people,” Rinnert said.
After working with the San Francisco Giants minor league baseball team in Scottsdale, Arizona Simmons wanted to change things up and move closer to home.
Photo contributed by John Jordan
The Flagler College Trainer Staff
“I decided to leave professional baseball and move to the college level,” Simmons said. Simmons is one of two assistant athletic trainers at Flagler. He works with volleyball, tennis, men’s basketball, men’s cross country and golf.
Not only do the Flagler trainers provide immediate care for athletic injuries, but they also put together workout regimes. Every workout plan is targeted toward each specific sport to ensure that the teams are prepared correctly.
“I am also the strength and conditioning coordinator for Flagler and with that I put together strength and conditioning programs which are usually implemented by the coach or assistant coaches with their athletes,” Simmons said.
To round out the training staff, Wetherington is the second assistant athletic trainer. He is also the Fitness Center Coordinator, which means that he oversees the weight room in the Flagler Gym. Wetherington treats the men’s soccer, baseball, and women’s cross country teams. Although each trainer has specific teams, the training staff is limited so they, “Kind of cover each other,” Wetherington said.
Flagler volleyball player Rebecca Royal believes that the trainers are under appreciated.
“The trainers work so hard and get little to no recognition.”
Whether the trainers are cheering on a team at a match or taping a wrist before a double header, they do more than most know.