When you hear the word athlete, you most likely think of a person playing a sport. Did you know there are non-sport, working athletes all around us? We call them industrial athletes, or sometimes, occupational athletes. Industrial athletes are the men and women who perform services with high physical demand, using strength, endurance, flexibility, and coordination.
Construction workers, nurses, warehouse workers, mail carriers, and auto mechanics are just a few of the thousands of industrial athletes performing duties that help enhance our lives.
Many consider industrial athletes the backbone of the working world!
Just like sports athletes, industrial athletes use their physical abilities to perform a task or a job. Like sports athletes, industrial athletes can also sustain injuries. They lift, bend, push, and move in identical ways that a typical sports athlete would, sometimes working longer hours.
This makes them just as vulnerable to physical and in some cases, emotional injury. Long, stressful hours can certainly cause anxiety and stress for many industrial athletes.
Common Industrial Athlete Injuries
Industrial athletes are more at risk for injuries than someone sitting at a desk all day. Some of the most common industrial athlete injuries faced by these hardworking people include:
- Slips, trips, and falls
- oily or wet floors
- falling off roofs, ladders, or buildings.
- Overexertion and muscle strains
- improper lifting techniques
- repetitive work with no breaks
- Crashes or collisions
- falling from a vehicle
- getting stuck under an overturned vehicle
- struck by objects falling from a vehicle
Injury Prevention for Industrial Athletes
In today’s fast-paced working world, it is important to take care of our industrial athletes. When a member of any team is injured, it can overwork and slow down the remaining members, which in turn, decreases production.
Just like playing doubles in tennis; if one person on your team is injured, you are forced to play one versus two. It puts an extreme amount of extra work and stress on the one individual trying to keep up.
Avoiding injury is a big key to a steady flow of production and quality performance. A full team also helps keep a positive attitude in the work environment.
Industrial athletes need proper training.
Industrial Athlete Concepts
To avoid injury in the workplace, many companies are turning to industrial athletic training. Industrial athletic trainers (ATC’s) develop and manage programs for companies to help reduce injuries, by focusing on injury prevention, while maintaining a top level of performance. Not only do they specialize in the prevention of injury, but they also train athletes to diagnose, assess, and treat the injury.
Although sports athletes do sustain injuries, they go through preventative care as part of their teaching. An ATC can train industrial workers to prevent injury as well. They have the knowledge and know how to develop programs to prevent or reduce injuries, as well as how to get the employee back to the job site in a timely manner.
ACT’s must hold a bachelor’s or master's degree and are trained in areas of anatomy, nutrition, and physiology. They must also pass a board certification exam.
Most workers don't think about the physical and emotional aspects of their job until it is too late. With proper training and knowledge, industrial athletic workers can prevent or lower the chance for injury. They can also be trained in best practices if an injury were to occur.
Why Do You Need Industrial Athletic Training?
The short answer to this question is because you value your employees. The industrial athletic concept is simple; it ensures that employees work safely for the long-term. Through this type of training program, employees will understand how to use proper techniques when lifting and how to keep fit for their job.
They will also gain knowledge and understanding of safe work practices, and learn how to implement healthy habits both at work and home.
Start Training Your Industrial Athletes & Reduce Workplace Injuries
Now that you understand what an industrial athlete is and how important it is for a company to protect them, let’s discuss how to connect with a training program that can meet your needs.
A company or program that offers all around training would be your best choice. Look for a program that offers injury prevention, wellness management, and injury management.
Be sure to ask if their ATC’s, physical therapists, exercise physiologists, and health and fitness staff are all certified. A trustworthy ATC company is passionate about increasing your bottom line through its program. One ATC company that checks all of these boxes is Work-Fit.
Work-Fit offers tailor-made injury prevention and management programs for your workforce’s needs. We’re helping businesses protect over 100,000 industrial athletes nationwide.
If you’re ready to take good care of your industrial athletes while lowering OSHA incident rates and workers’ comp costs, get started now.