District 8 News from California, Hawaii and Nevada

St. Francis High School Host 13th Annual Sports Medicine Competition & Seminar

St. Francis High School’s Sports Medicine Program hosted the 13th Annual Sports Medicine Competition on Saturday, April 5, 2014. Since 2002, this competition has brought together students from across the western United States to test their knowledge in the specialized field of Sports Medicine/Athletic Training. This annual day of competition has created some wonderful friendships over the years between students and long-lasting partnerships between Sports Medicine programs. Ultimately, the goal of the competition is to promote the health and safety of all student-athletes.

This year’s St. Francis High School Sports Medicine Competition on April 5, 2014 was scheduled from 8:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. The competition, which is endorsed by the California Athletic Trainers’ Association, took place at St. Francis High School and all high school students actively involved in a Sports Medicine program were invited to participate. Nearly 550 students from 35 different schools registered to attend this year’s event. The competition involved written, oral, practical, & taping components and provides all participants the opportunity to learn more about Sports Medicine and Athletic Training.

In addition, Mr. Eli Hallak, the head Certified Athletic Trainer (ATC) at St. Francis High School, hosted the Annual High School Sports Medicine Seminar on Tuesday, April 15th, 2014 at the Staples Center in Los Angeles. The seminar was followed by the LA Clippers versus Denver Nuggets basketball game. All high school students/teachers/athletic trainers participated in a fun day of education and hands on training.

The St. Francis High School Sports Medicine Program strives to promote excellence in healthcare for athletics. Headed by Certified Athletic Trainer, Eli Hallak ATC, EMT, the program has evolved into a multifaceted entity within the St. Francis science and athletic departments. The “Introductory Kinesiology and Rehabilitation” Sports Medicine Course was introduced to the school in 1999 and later became the 1st UC approved lab science course in the field of Sports Medicine in California. This program is unique because it introduces high school students to the field of Sports Medicine/Athletic Training and provides a foundation of knowledge essential to other healthcare industry careers.

The main focus of the program is the development of the students’ practical knowledge in the area of Sports Medicine and Athletic Training. Whether treating their fellow St. Francis students in the school’s state-of-the-art Sports Medicine Complex, working at interscholastic competitions as rookie athletic trainers, or assisting as Senior/Head Athletic Trainers for a specific athletic team, the primary focus of the program remains the health and safety of all Golden Knights and visitors to our campus.

In addition, the St. Francis High School Sports Medicine Complex also serves as a primary clinical site for California State University Northridge’s Athletic Training Education Program (ATEP). As such, several CSUN student interns assist the medical staff at St. Francis on an annual basis alongside our team physician, Robert Gazmarian M.D., and our team physical therapist, Eric Landswick P.T., ATC. These student interns, along with the addition of Albert Galvan as Assistant Certified Athletic Trainer, assist Mr. Hallak in the health and safety of our student athletes on a daily basis and impart their knowledge and training on to the St. Francis students.

Nearly 150 volunteers from Cal State Northridge, College of the Canyons, Azusa Pacific University, and Western University of Health Sciences. Cabrillo High captured the small school division in team competition while Culver City High won in the large school division. Hannah Frey of Coronado High School was the winner of the high school athletic training student of the year, beating out 21 other students with her portfolio and presentation on motorized spine boards.

Courtesy of St. Francis High School Sports Medicine

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