Healthy teams make better teams. More trainers make for more opportunities for players to be healthier.
With six student trainers this school year, Weatherford College Head Athletic Trainer Chris Nelson has more help than ever before in his effort to accomplish that goal.
"Having six, I can have at least one per sport, and the athletes get to know them," said Nelson. "All of us help with rodeo."
Weatherford College sports include men's and women's basketball, baseball, softball and rodeo. Community colleges with football programs tend to have more student trainers, but most like Weatherford College rarely have more than a couple.
In fact, Nelson has never had more than two before, he said.
"To have six in a program like this is a really big thing," he said.
The student trainers this school year are freshman Rachel Dean, freshman Kylee Vanloh and sophomore Amanda Wacasey, all Weatherford High School graduates; sophomore Anna Holt from Peaster; freshman Katherine Toland of Sweetwater and sophomore Miranda Ellis of Fort Worth.
Of course, it helps that his wife, Stephanie Nelson, is an athletic trainer at Weatherford High. It has created sort of a pipeline between WHS and WC.
"It's awesome, my wife breaks them in for me," said Nelson with a smile. "It's nice. They come in with a little more experience, having worked with football and a lot of sports. Weatherford High is a big program."
Dean said she worked with 11 other student trainers at WHS.
"I'm used to a big group," she said. "We have this special bond."
While student trainers at Weatherford College still must attend a four-year school to get a degree in that subject, Nelson said coming to the program at WC is a great start.
Dean said instead of starting out at a four-year school, coming to WC gives someone like her a chance to get used to the college sports climate.
"I want to be a physical therapist assistant," she said. "I figured if I'm going into athletic training, this was a great place to start. It's smaller, very comfortable, and I can transfer to another school with some experience under my belt."