We are soon heading to the 40th Annual HGHA Tournament in beautiful Huntsville, Ontario and turns out our regular Trainer is unable to join us. With the requirement that a certified trainer be on hand for all team events, it’s hard to expect one trainer to be in attendance for every little hockey thing so this is why you have back-up trainers, and back-up back-up trainers, and… well… you get the picture.
My husband is the back-up trainer for our daughter’s team. I am the team manager (and a very reluctant back-up, back-up trainer only because I can’t seem to open those doors fast enough). Looks like Huntsville is going to be a mini and partial family vacation. Three of us, and a hockey bag, cozying it up in a little, tiny motel room. Stay tuned because you know there will be a story.
Our regular team trainer and I were communicating back and forth about the team trainer’s kit and how to get it to us before the tournament in the unlikely event that we would need it over the course of the weekend. I got to thinking how that kit has evolved over our years of hockey. The first aid kit is the standard part and the trainer’s kit can never be without it but ask the players’ what is their definition of “first aid”? You might be surprised.
Ok, so you’re a newbie trainer with the ink of your certification course barely dry. What do you think you’ll need?
Start with a Standard First Aid Kit, the player medical forms, and add a million Ziploc bags (Zamboni slush for instant ice packs, gathering lost teeth – typical hockey stuff). Then add a screw driver (for adjusting hockey helmets and the rivets on skate blades – hold the jokes about hockey players having a few loose screws). Also add a skate sharpening stone for which can be used in emergencies but mostly for extra confidence.
Then suddenly you are asked before your first game as a trainer, “Hey Joe! Didn’t your lad just play hockey this morning?” and you answer, “Yeah, why?” and then you know why, because from now on your trainer’s kit also includes an extra neck guard, mouth guard, jock or jill, and possibly extra elbow pads and even maybe once in a while an extra pair of hockey pants (not that a hockey player would ever forget taking their hockey pants to a hockey game. Ever.).
You’re now on the bench and you’re thinking, ‘What do I need this first aid kit for anyway?! What I really need right now is some Kleenex, black hockey tape, clear hockey tape and Joey’s asthma puffer!’
A couple of games into the season, maybe even a couple of seasons into your trainer’s career, and you think ‘I’ve got this whole thing covered’. Nothing will surprise you now – except Sarah has now just asked you for nail polish remover, a hair elastic and maybe a tampon or two. Surprise, surprise.
It’s ok. Players change with the hockey years and so does the team trainer kit. Come to think of it, there are an awful lot of similarities between trainer’s kit and my hockey mom handbag. Though a hockey mom doesn’t often get taken by surprise.
Three cheers for the hockey trainers on your teams – they’ve got it in the bag!
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