My name is Josh Wakefield and I am currently in my 2nd year of a Master of Physiotherapy degree at the University of Sydney. For the past 5 months I have been providing sports trainer coverage for Sydney Harlequins Rugby Union Club of a Saturday afternoon. Thus far I have found the experience to be beneficial and enjoyable both socially and professionally.
This experience has provided with me with the opportunity to apply knowledge I have developed during my studies in real world and in most instances, high intensity and high stress situations. As a result I feel as though my diagnostic skills have developed, with my understanding of injury mechanisms and subsequent anatomical disturbances growing with the vast array of injuries I have encountered. I have been exposed to injuries at acute, sub-acute and chronic stages and have had to adjust my management approach accordingly which has also contributed to my professional practice and knowledge as a Physiotherapy student.
As one can imagine, an injury to a player during the game can lead to a very stressful environment, especially if the injury is of a serious nature. The stresses of such situations have been eased by the support of Simone and Andy who have made themselves available for contact at any point where I have needed guidance with injury diagnosis or treatment ideas.
My welcome to the club has been and continues to be a warm one, with both management and players going out of their way to make me feel as though I am a valued part of the club on a regular basis. As a result I have had the opportunity to meet a number of great people from various professional, cultural and social backgrounds at numerous social functions held by the club in addition to the Saturday afternoons spent taping and providing first aide.
With the knowledge, experience and contacts I have gained in this role I am hoping to continue working with the Harlequins as well as other sporting teams of various codes in the future, ideally at a professional or semi-professional level.