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By Andy Wood

View From the Training Room

ADVANCE

for Physical Therapy & Rehab Medicine¢â

One NHL trainer¡¯s approach

to treating the challenges

presented by a professional

hockey team.

Professional hockey presents unique challenges

to the modern athletic trainer. Defined as a ¡°collision

sport,¡± it features highly conditioned athletes

traveling at speed on narrow blades across

a hard, unforgiving surface. Add long sticks and

a puck traveling at speeds of up to 100 mph and

you have a unique blend of circumstances that

combine to create numerous injuries.

Advances in protective equipment design and

higher standards of refereeing have reduced the

severity of injuries, but they are unfortunately still

a daily occurrence.

We asked the trainer for the NHL¡¯s Buffalo

Sabres, Tim Macre, ATC, CSCS, what all this

means for someone trying to keep these athletes

healthy. Macre started in 1996 as the athletic

trainer for the New York Rangers¡¯ top affiliate in

the American Hockey League, and in 2005 made

the move to the Sabres.

You are the first NHL trainer to use a Litecure

Class IV laser in the locker room. How has that

helped you and would you recommend it for

other teams and/or sports?

Macre: The Litecure has been great this past

season. The effectiveness of this laser in reducing

pain levels of foot and ankle contusions,

AC joint sprains and wrist sprains surprised

even me. The deep penetration of this unit even

allowed for use on hip flexor and groin strains

with excellent results.

What other modalities do you use?

Macre: I try to not use a lot of modalities, and prefer

a hands-on approach. That being said, when

indicated, I use ultrasound, and have a variety

of electrical stimulation units that we may use.

To me one of the biggest indicators of the value

of a modality is feedback. NHL athletes are very

¡°in tune¡± with their bodies and will provide

feedback throughout any treatment. Many of my

players have identified the Litecure as a modality

that truly helps them feel better and ask for

it by name.

How do you keep up to date on the latest trends

and research?

Macre: I read journals and attend educational

symposiums in the offseason. I also talk to my

peers, not only in the NHL, but also in the NFL,

NBA and MLB, as to the latest techniques and

equipment they have been using. ¡á

Andy Wood is international sales director for Litecure LLC.

.

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