RB offers unique sports medicine course


Carmen Guerrero

The RB trainer’s room.

Ana Nava, Staff Reporter

At Riverside Brookfield High School, there are 194 classes for students to take during their four years. Sports Medicine, though, is one of two classes where students are able to learn more about first aid and are able to apply it outside of the classroom. Before classes like Anatomy and Physiology were offered, Sports Medicine was the only class students could take to gain knowledge on human medicine.

“Laura Drazanic, she came up with the Sports Medicine class as a way to introduce kids to the field of athletic training. Then when she left, I took over the class,” teacher and head trainer, Mr. Frey said.

Sports Medicine introduces the skills needed to become a student trainer. Some students who took the class even ended up being trainers at RB. Training becomes a way for students to apply what they learn to real-life situations. They learn to wrap injuries, care for concussions, and help professional RB trainers in everyday school-related sports events.                  

Students at RB who have chosen to do Sports Medicine all have different experiences with the class. All students are introduced to the class in different ways and become student trainers when they are able to fit it into their schedules. 

Senior Danika Apostolovich took the class her sophomore year and helped out as a trainer soon after during the winter sports season. She knew that being a trainer would influence her choice in college, as it could help with pursuing a major in medicine.

“My mom was a trainer in college, and we saw that this class was offered, so she told me to take it,” Apostolovich said. “I’ve always liked the training opportunities and stuff like that. Since sophomore year, I’ve been a trainer during the winter season.”

Senior Ella Gomez has taken Sports Medicine and is currently taking Anatomy and Physiology. She has been a student trainer since 8th grade, beginning when her older brother was a student at RB. She has long been interested in medicine and hopes to continue that passion in college.

“I loved that class [Sports Medicine], it really prepared me for Anatomy and Physiology, but it was a really good course,” Gomez said. “It is great first response training and hands-on, and I don’t see any other way I would be getting this in high school for college.”

McKenzie Galbraith, who graduated RB in 2020, took Sports Medicine and was a student trainer continuously during her sophomore and junior year. Because of the pandemic, Galbraith participated when she could during the winter season her senior year. 

“I think my favorite memories were probably the Christmas parties; we got to decorate the training room and hang out with everybody and H and Frey. Outside of that, going to the games and getting to experience what it’s like to be an athletic trainer and getting to see behind the scenes,” Galbraith said.

Galbraith recognizes that her experience with athletic training at RB influenced her transition to college.

“When I first started at RB, I wanted to be a physical trainer, and then I wanted to be a physical therapist, and then I wanted to be an athletic trainer for a while, and I kinda was jumping all over the place,” Galbraith said. “When I tried out training, Mr. Frey kind of convinced me to check out nursing.”

No matter how students find out about the class, Sports Medicine and student training at RB have a strong influence those students.

“I’m lucky enough to have students that are athletic trainers, physical therapists, physicians assistants, physicians, nurses, all across the gambit of the healthcare field. I’ve had some that just enjoyed it as a hobby in high school and have gone to other fields,” Mr. Frey said.