• Shafer Website AT Section


    What is an ATC

                "Athletic Trainers are experts.  Working to prevent and treat musculoskeletal injuries and sports-related illnesses, athletic trainers offer a continuum of care unparalleled in health care. ATs are part of a team of health care professionals- they practice under the direction of and in collaboration with physicians. ATs work with those individuals who are physically active or involved in sports participation through all stages of life to prevent, treat and rehabilitate injuries and medical conditions. Athletic Trainers should not be confused with person trainers or "trainers" who focus solely on fitness and conditioning. Always refer to an "athletic trainer" or "AT" to ensure clarify of profession and quality of care. 

    Athletic Trainers save lives. Sports injuries can be serious. Brain and spinal cord injuries and conditions such as heat illness can be life threatening if not recognized and properly handled. ATs are there to treat acute injuries on the spot. Athletes have chronic illnesses, too. People with diabetes and asthma can and do safely work and exercise, and the athletic trainer can help manage these critical health issues as they relate to physical exertion.

    The athletic trainer is the health care system for athletes and others. Athletic Trainers are on site. They work with patients to avoid injuries; they're there when injuries happen and they provide immediate care; and they rehabilitate patients after injuries or surgeries. It's a continuum of care. They know their patients as well because they are at the school every day" 

    - NATA 


    Visit NATA.org for more information about Athletic Training



    About Shafer's Athletic Trainer


    Alex Hadulias                                     

    Athletic Trainer

    Bensalem Area Middle Schools


    Policies and Procedures


    Policies and Procedures Document



    The Athletic Trainer will be present between Cecelia Snyder Middle School and Robert K. Shafer Middle School after school from 3:00 PM until 5:00 PM for coverage of practices/games/matches/meets. This time is consistent during the week from Monday-Thursday for the 2017-2018 school year. The athletic trainer may be asked to cover on Fridays or weekends for games but this may vary.


    Medical Forms

    2016-2017PIAA Physical Form

    Emergency form (school specific)


    Educational Information

    In this section you will find information on a number of conditions the Athletic Trainer is prepared to work with. You will also find information for educational purposes on concussions, nutrition, rehabilitation, and other conditions.


    Heat Illness









    A concussion is a brain injury caused by a bump or blow to the head or body that causes the brain to move rapidly within the skull. Even a “ding,” “getting your bell rung,” or what seems to be a mild bump or blow to the head or body resulting in a whiplash effect can be serious. The injury of Concussion cannot be seen. Common sports injuries such as torn ligaments and broken bones are structural injuries that can be seen on MRIs or x-rays, or detected during an examination. A concussion, however, is primarily an injury that interferes with how the brain works. While there is damage to brain cells, the damage is at a microscopic level and cannot be seen on MRI or CT scans. Therefore, the brain looks normal on these tests, even though it has been seriously injured.

    It used to be believed that a player had to lose consciousness or be “knocked-out” to have a concussion. This is not true, as the vast majority of concussions do not involve a loss of consciousness. In fact, less than 10% of players actually lose consciousness with a concussion.

     There are common signs and symptoms that help us recognize a concussion. Signs and symptoms of concussion can present themselves right after the injury or may not appear or be noticed until days or weeks after the injury. Only one sign or symptom is needed for the clinical diagnosis of concussion to be made. The common Signs and Symptoms are listed below. A comprehensive list of these signs and symptoms can be found in the Appendix section of this protocol.

     Common Signs (observed by others):

    ·      Athlete appears dazed or stunned

    ·      Confusion (about plays, assignment, etc.)

    ·      Forgets plays

    ·      Unsure about game, score, opponent

    ·      Moves clumsily (altered coordination)

    ·      Appears off balance

    ·      Personality changes

    ·      Vomiting

    ·      Responds slowly to questions

    ·      Forgets events prior to hit or forgets events after the hit

    ·      Loss of consciousness (any duration)


    Common Symptoms (reported by athlete):

    ·      Headache                                                                  

    ·      Fatigue

    ·      Nausea

    ·      Double vision

    ·      Blurry vision

    ·      Sensitivity to light or sounds

    ·      Feels slow or sluggish

    ·      Feels "foggy" or “out of it”

    ·      Problems concentrating

    ·      Problems remembering

    ·      May feel an increase in symptoms with physical or mental exertion


    *If an athlete is experiencing any one or combination of these signs or symptoms, he/she will be removed from activity immediately, with no same day return to play permitted.

    The athlete’s injury is to be reported to the athletic trainer or the school nurse during school hours when the athletic trainer is not present.


    ImPACT (Immediate Post-Concussion Assessment and Cognitive Testing) is the first, most-widely used, and most scientifically validated computerized concussion evaluation system. ImPACT is not used to diagnose a concussion, but rather is utilized as a tool to evaluate neurocognitive function recovery after a concussion. These functions include memory, attention, brain processing speed, reaction time, and post concussion symptoms. At the beginning of each season, all athletes participating in contact sports will take a baseline ImPACT test. Baseline testing is done every year.  Remember, ImPACT does NOT diagnose a concussion, but rather is a tool used in the evaluation of concussions and the management of concussion recovery.


     Return to play from a concussion is gradual and will progress over a course of consecutive days. Prior to starting the “Gradual Return to Play Progression”, the athlete must meet ALL of the following criteria:

    1. Athlete is asymptomatic at rest and with mental exertion (a full day of classes is required to meet this criteria) AND:
    2. Athlete’s final neurocognitive scores (ImPACT) are within normal range of baseline on all Post-Injury Testing AND:
    3. Athlete is no longer using pharmacological aids that mask/modify concussive symptoms. **Special considerations by treating MD (can include antidepressant therapy) AND:
    4. Athlete has a written clearance note to begin the “Return To Play Progression” from the Concussion Specialist who initially evaluated the athlete, as well as, been given access to the athlete’s Baseline and Post-Injury test results.

             **Only the evaluating Physician and/or athletic trainer will be permitted to make return to play decisions and will be done so in writing.


    When all of the above criteria are met, the athlete will be progressed back to full activity following a step-wise process under the supervision of the Athletic Trainer or qualified Physical Therapist. Return to Play Progression is individualized and is determined on a case by case basis. Factors such as concussion history, duration and type of symptoms, age, and the type of sport can affect the rate of the athlete’s progression.  


    RTP Progression:

    Day 1: Light Aerobic Exercise

    Day 2: Sport Specific Exercise

    Day 3: Non-Contact Training

    Day 4: Full Contact Practice

    Day 5: Return to Play- no limitations 


    Concussion Take Home Sheet

    BHS Concussion Protocol

    Concussion Protocol

    Return to Play Chart


    Important Links:

    Athletic Trainers' Board of Certification



    Bucks County Courier Times




       -        PA Law: Senate Bill 200 – Safety In Youth Sports Act


    -        Centers for Disease Control & Prevention: Heads Up Program      






    National Athletic Trainers' Association  



    National Federation of State High School Federations



    PA Department of State Bureau of Professional & Occupational Affairs 



    Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association, Inc.



    Sport Safety International



    Stop Sports Injuries



    Sudden Cardiac Arrest






    Sports Nutrition

    Athletes who want a winning edge need the right nutrition. When you drink enough water and eat a balanced diet, your body can make energy efficiently and fuel top performance.


    You can make the most of your athletic talents and gain more strength, power, and endurance when you train. Base your diet on a variety of factors, including your age, size, physical condition, and the type of exercise you are doing. 

    Water is the most important factor in sports nutrition. Water makes up approximately 60% of body weight and is involved in almost every body process. Your body cannot make or store water, so you must replace the water you eliminate in your urine and sweat.
    Everyone should drink at least 2 quarts (8 cups) of water each day, and athletes need more. Drink plenty of fluids before, during, and after sports events to stay hydrated and to avoid overheating. When you work out or compete, especially in hot weather, try to closely match the amount of fluid you drink with the amount you lose in sweat.

    Cool water is the best fluid to keep you hydrated during workouts or events that last an hour or less. Sports drinks containing 6% to 10% carbohydrates are useful for longer events. Most sports drinks should be diluted with approximately 50% water.
    Drink water even if you are not thirsty. Thirst is not a reliable way to tell if you need water. You won't start feeling thirsty until you have already lost about 2% of body weight--enough to hurt performance. Also, if you stop drinking water once your thirst is satisfied, you will get only about half the amount you need.

    Some tips for staying hydrated:
    -Drink small amounts of water frequently, rather than large amounts less often. 
    -Drink cold beverages to cool your core body temperature and reduce sweating. 
    -Weigh yourself after working out, and drink 2 to 3 cups of water for every pound lost. Your body weight should be back to normal before the next workout. 
    -Pay attention to the amount and color of your urine. You should excrete a large volume that is nearly colorless. Small amounts of urine or dark yellow-colored urine can indicate dehydration. 

    Fuel Sources 
    Eating a balanced diet is another key to sports nutrition. The right combination of fuel (calories) from carbohydrates, proteins, and fats gives you energy for top performance.

    The most important fuel source, carbohydrates are found in fruits, vegetables, pastas, breads, cereals, rice, and other foods. Carbohydrates should provide about 60% to 70% of your daily calories.
    Your body converts the sugars and starches in carbohydrates to energy (glucose) or stores it in your liver and muscle tissues (glycogen), giving you endurance and power for high-intensity, short-duration activities.
    If your body runs out of carbohydrate fuel during exercise, it will burn fat and protein for energy, causing your performance level to drop. This can happen if you start exercising without much muscle glycogen, exercise heavily for more than an hour without eating more carbohydrates, do repeated high-intensity, short-duration exercises, or participate in multiple events or training sessions in a single day.




    Use a carbohydrate strategy to stay energized and perform at your best:
    Eat carbohydrates for at least several days before exercise/competition to start with glycogen-loaded muscles. 
    Eat more carbohydrates during exercise/competition that lasts more than an hour to replenish energy and delay fatigue. 




    Proteins are found in meats, fish, poultry, eggs, beans, nuts, dairy products, and other foods. Proteins should provide approximately 12% to 15% of your daily calories.
    Proteins give your body power to build new tissues and fluids, among other functions. Your body cannot store extra protein, so it burns it for energy or converts it to fat. The amount of protein an athlete needs depends in part on level of fitness; exercise type, intensity, and duration; total daily calories; and carbohydrate intake.


    -Level of fitness. Physically active people need more protein compared with those who don't exercise. You also need more protein when you start an exercise program. 
    -Exercise type, intensity, and duration. Endurance athletes often burn protein for fuel, as do body builders and other athletes who perform intense, strength-building activities. 
    -Total calories. Your body burns more protein if you don't consume enough calories to maintain body weight. This can happen if you eat too little or exercise too much. 
    -Carbohydrate intake. Your body may use protein for energy if you exercise with low levels of muscle glycogen or if you do repeated training sessions without eating more carbohydrates. When you start with enough muscle glycogen, protein supplies about 5% of energy; otherwise it may supply up to 10%. 

    Saturated fats come from animal-based foods, such as meats, eggs, milk, and cheese. Unsaturated fats are found in vegetable products, such as corn oil. Fats should provide no more than about 20% to 30% of daily calories.

    Your body needs small amounts of fat for certain critical functions and as an alternative energy source to glucose. But eating too much fat is associated with heart disease, some cancers, and other major problems. Also, if you eat too much fat, it probably means that you don't get enough carbohydrates.

    How your body uses fat for energy depends on the intensity and duration of exercise. For example, when you rest or exercise at low to moderate intensity, fat is the primary fuel source. As you increase exercise intensity, your body uses more carbohydrates for fuel. If your body uses up its glycogen supply and you keep exercising, your body will burn fat for energy, decreasing exercise intensity.

    Precompetition Nutrition 
    What you eat several days before an endurance activity affects performance. The food you eat the morning of a sports competition can ward off hunger, keep blood sugar levels adequate, and aid hydration. Avoid high protein or high fat foods on the day of an event because this can put stress the kidneys and take a long time to digest. 

     General Guidelines: 
    -Eat a meal high in carbohydrates. 
    -Take solid foods 3 to 4 hours before an event. Take liquids 2 to 3 hours before an event. 
    -Choose easily digestible foods (ie, not fried). 
    -Avoid sugary foods/drinks within 1 hour of the event. 
    -Drink enough fluids to ensure hydration (ie, 20 ounces of water 1 to 2 hours before exercise and an additional 10 to 15 ounces within 15 to 30 minutes of event.) Replenishing fluids lost to sweat is the primary concern during an athletic event. Drink 3 to 6 ounces of water or dilute sports drink every 10 to 20 minutes throughout competition. 

    Carbohydrate Loading 
    To avoid running out of carbohydrates for energy, some endurance athletes, such as long-distance runners, swimmers, and bicyclists, load their muscles with glycogen by eating extra carbohydrates in combination with doing depletion exercises several days before an event:

    First exercise to exhaustion. Your workout must be identical to the upcoming event to deplete the right muscles. 
    Then eat a high carbohydrate diet (70% to 80% carbohydrates, 10% to 15% fat, 10% to 15% protein), and do little or no exercise starting 3 days before your event. 
    Muscles loaded with unused glycogen will be available to work for longer periods of time during competition.



    Proper Fitting Shoes:


    Tips for Finding the Right Shoe                                  Description: hoes

    Follow these specially designed fitting facts when purchasing a new pair of athletic shoes.            

    ·       Try on athletic shoes after a workout or run and at the end of the day. Your feet will be at their largest.

    ·       Wear the same type of sock that you will wear for that sport.

    ·       When the shoe is on your foot, you should be able to freely wiggle all of your toes.

    ·       The shoes should be comfortable as soon as you try them on. There is no break-in period.

    ·       Walk or run a few steps in your shoes. They should be comfortable.

    ·       Always re-lace the shoes you are trying on. You should begin at the farthest eyelets and apply even pressure as you a crisscross lacing pattern to the top of the shoe.

    ·       There should be a firm grip of the shoe to your heel. Your heel should not slip as you walk or run.

    ·       If you participate in a sport three or more times a week, you need a sports-specific shoe.                                                   


    Wrestling Information:

    PIAA Weight Control Program Guidelines (PDF)

    Information on Skin Conditions (website)

    -       http://www.nwcaonline.com/student-athlete-well/sports-safety-news/

    Skin Lesion Release Form (PDF)






    Alex Hadulias

    Athletic Trainer


    Dr. Sommer Hammoud, M.D.

    Team Physician


    Mr. Ryan Engelhardt

    Athletic Director


    (215) 750-2800 ext. 2259

    Mrs. Kathleen McLaughlin

    School Nurse

    (215) 750-2800; ext. 2205

    NovaCare Feasterville

    Physical Therapy

    (215) 357-2363

    Ms. Jill Noonan

    School Counselor

    (215) 750-2800; ext. 2210

    Mr. Dave Hatala

    School Counselor

    (215) 750-2800; ext. 2211