Athletic Trainer is this week's Pride of the Pine Belt - WDAM-TV 7-News, Weather, Sports-Hattiesburg, MS

Athletic Trainer is this week's Pride of the Pine Belt

Athletic Trainer is this week's Pride of the Pine Belt Athletic Trainer is this week's Pride of the Pine Belt

Kevin Mauldin has been the athletic trainer for Oak Grove High school for 11 years.

"I think we make a difference as athletic trainers," said Mauldin.

It's not a job to be taken lightly. The impact trainers, like Mauldin, make can affect players health.

"Well, we have had some severe injuries. I've been here 11 years and I've dealt with an artery tear, where a kid almost lost his leg. I've dealt with a fracture where it is out of the skin, open fracture. We have had a kid break his neck, but not quadriplegic," said Mauldin.

Mauldin says it was an injury of his own in high school that led him to this profession.

"I got injured my junior year had shoulder surgery. I did my rehab with an athletic trainer and always thought,'Hey, it would be cool to get paid to go watch ball games and to do the rehab'," said Mauldin.

Mauldin says early on in his career he realized that his job goes beyond sports medicine.

"You see the injured players in a wheel chair, then you see them barely walking and now you got them where they can run. You take them through that process of rehab and then they return to play. That's our reward," said Mauldin.

Mauldin will soon receive another reward thanks to the Southeast Athletic Trainers Association. Out of all the high school trainers from seven states Mauldin was named High School Athletic Trainer of the year.

"Being nominated by your peers means a lot. Maybe I am making a difference, and people see the work put in by an athletic trainer," said Mauldin.

Mauldin is also helping to make a difference in the classrooms.

"We have developed a sports medicine class. I teach sports medicine and this was the first school to have the class. Eight years ago we started that. We've developed a heat policy, and we've developed a concussion policy for Lamar County,"said Mauldin.

Mauldin will be presented his plaque on March 17th at the Renaissance Atlanta Waverly Hotel.

Copyright 2012 WDAM. All rights reserved.

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