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Shannon Wright – Athletic Trainer Extraordinaire Iowa State University Recreation Services Blog

Some of our sport club participants may have heard of the legendary Shannon. But for us regular folk, we rarely venture into the deep, dark bowels of Beyer Hall to discover what treasures await. Shannon and her athletic training staff prove that very point. Located in the far northern corner of the basement, Shannon runs an oasis for sport club athletes. Her athletic training room is complete with rehab equipment, foam rollers, and an ice machine all free for sport clubs. To gain more insight into Shannon’s position with Rec Services, we asked her a few questions.

How did you get involved with Recreation Services

When I was applying for grad schools, this athletic training position opened up as a graduate assistant (GA). Before that, I wasn’t involved with Rec Services as an employee, just as a student. My GA position turned into a full-time job. After I graduated, Rec Services decided that they needed a full-time athletic trainer and a GA.

How do you work with Sport Clubs?

During the day, we have hours for treatment, evaluations, rehab, and stretching before practice. All of these are completely free for sport clubs. We also cover high-risk practices and most to all of the home events. Soccer, rugby, ultimate frisbee, ice hockey, boxing, and lacrosse are all examples of high-risk events.

What does your average day look like?

During the school year, I will get into the office around 9 or 10. Our athletic training room is open from 10 to 4. Starting this year, athletes will have to make appointments to get treatment of any kind. In the past, we have just allowed athletes to drop in whenever was convenient. Some days are quieter than others; usually, Tuesdays and Thursdays are our slow days. Between 4 and 5, we complete documentation of our treatments. By 5 we are out at the fields for practices, which usually last until 7 or 7:30. September, October, and April are the busiest months of the school year. We have events almost every weekend on top of our normal hours. From September to March we have ice hockey games on Friday and Saturday nights.

How many sport club students do you see every day?

Last year we set a new average of about 18 to 22 students a day.

What do you like about your job?

I like working with the students. We get to work with not only sport club participants but with the athletic training students. It allows them to see a completely new environment, different from both the Division 1 sports level and the high school setting where they may have trained before.

What advice would you have for someone who wanted to pursue athletic training?

Do a lot of observation and understand what the profession is before you start. Because of new educational standards, you will now need a masters degree to even sit for the certification exam. Talk to as many people as you can about the pros and cons of being an athletic trainer. Most universities also offer a pre-athletic training course, take that before making any decisions.

Massive shout out to Shannon for all her work with our sport clubs. She does a fantastic job keeping our student-athletes in peak performance condition. In fact, our sport clubs had an unprecedented amount of success last year. Tune in later to read all about their seasons!

If you are interested in either joining a sport club or finding your own position with Recreation Services, check out our website! Most of the sport club tryouts happen within the first few weeks of school, so don’t miss out! And if you do join a sport club, you too can meet Shannon Wright, our athletic trainer extraordinaire.