Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Los Angeles Dodgers Hire First Female Athletic Trainer In MLB

In the wake of all the stupid and crazy things that the Los Angeles Dodgers have had to endure in the past year with owner Frank McCourt's legal and financial troubles (as well as bad publicity from the fallout over the beating of Bryan Stow), the Dodgers have finally done something worth applauding.

Today the Dodgers hired the first female head athletic trainer in Major League Baseball (or any major pro sport in America), Sue Falsone.  For those who may not know, athletic trainers are concerned primarily with injury management and prevention. They're the staff that is a bridge between players and physicians.

In a world where women are athletic trainers at the high school and college levels, this was a natural progression.  Falsone, 37, says she's never had a problem working with male athletes.

Falsone is currently vice-president, performance physical therapy and team sports, at Athlete's Performance in Phoenix.   Indeed, this is how the Dodgers got to become familiar with her work when they hired her as the team's physical therapist in 2007.

Falsone's promotion to Head Trainer is part of a new program that the Dodgers will be implementing with Athlete's Performance.  Everything from the majors to minor leagues will be integrated into a year-round physical, medical, and developmental program designed to maximize athletic performance and reduce injuries across the Dodgers organization.
"It's ironic that people think the change is about me being a woman, and that's not really the change," Falsone said. "It's us as a medical staff and dealing with injures — that's what the change is going to be. We'll look at things differently. We'll have different principles of injury management and hopefully decrease the injury rate. That's what's exciting. We'll look at the processes in place and evaluate with a critical eye."
Kudos to the Dodgers for making this long overdue move.

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