Sports Injury Conference Comes To Chattanooga Tuesday-Wednesday

Thursday, April 10, 2014

UTC, the University of Tennessee College of Medicine, Chattanooga, Erlanger Health System, and the National Athletic Training Association will host “The Sports Injury Epidemic,” a national two-day conference, on Tuesday and Wednesday.

A series of sessions will explore and highlight nationally recognized problems relating to the prevention and management of sports injuries, such as concussion, heat stroke and ACL rupture.

“The purpose of this event is to create a dialogue with parents, coaches, administrators, and educators on this timely and sensitive issue," said Dr. Gary Wilkerson, UTC professor of Graduate Athletic Training and one of the organizers of the conference.  "Injuries such as concussions, heat stroke, and ACL rupture are potentially catastrophic and disabling in young athletes if not recognized and managed properly.” 

The panel discussion “Local Response to a National Problem” on Tuesday will feature Brooke de Lench, the founder of, a nationally recognized information source and online community for youth sports parents; and Michael Goldenberg, athletic director and head athletic trainer at Lawrenceville (NJ) High School. 

The discussion begins at 7 p.m. in the UTC University Center Auditorium. This event is free and open to the public. The discussion will focus on youth sports and what parents, coaches, and administrators can do to keep children safe while they participate in school sports. 

Dr. Brian Hainline, chief medical officer of the NCAA; Ron Courson, head athletic trainer and athletic director for Sports Medicine at the University of Georgia; and Ms. de Lench will give presentations on Wednesday from 9 a.m.-noon in UTC University Center Auditorium. The presentation titled “Safeguarding Student-Athlete Health and Welfare” will focus on issues relating to sports medicine practices and administrative policies. This event is free and open to the public.

Dr. Craig Denegar, director of the Doctor of Physical Therapy Program at the University of Connecticut and the editor-in-chief of the Journal of Athletic Training, will serve as moderator of a panel of national experts in a discussion on the best practices in administration of sports medicine programs for youth and intercollegiate athletics. The panel will be Wednesday at 1 p.m. in the UTC University Center Auditorium.  Registration for this event is required. Medical professionals may apply for CEU credit. 

“With all these panels and discussions, we hope to educate attendees, especially parents of children participating in school athletics programs, that physicians and athletic trainers are dedicated to doing everything they can to keep their student athletes safe on and off the field,” Dr. Wilkerson said.

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