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Tucked away in the back corner of the high school with windows overlooking the sports fields is a unique space created by two of the District’s finest, Coach Rob Addon and Coach Andrew Ojeda. The two serve as our athletic trainers, keeping students conscious of their bodies and their health as they represent Suffern High School sports teams.

From a pulled hamstring to recovering from a concussion, our athletic trainers have created a place of safety and trust for any student in need of support. Their gym is equipped with weights, stationary bikes, treadmills, a whirlpool and much more. On any given day a dozen students may walk in and out of the facility looking for personal attention to a specific injury.

On the day we visited the office, Coach Addon taped up a soccer player’s ankle in preparation for a game, gave a series of stretching and strengthening exercises to a football player with an injured shoulder, and used the cupping technique to stretch a soccer player’s leg muscles. There were many more students in need of help and Coach Addon approached each one with a smile and a genuine understanding of their particular needs.

“These coaches listen and assess what you need. They will either treat your issue or refer you to a doctor,” said Eric Genua, an SHS junior who plays football and wrestles. “Having trainers is very helpful for us as athletes. They play a key role in our health and I am grateful for that.”

Aidan Citterio, a varsity soccer player and track runner added that “Having Addon and Ojeda as coaches is great. These trainers know us personally, they care about us and they help us recover after a hard game. It’s nice to have someone that knows us and our history of injuries and that wants to see all of us succeed. Not only do they treat us in the office, but they watch us on the field and support our playing.”

Through a series of preventive and rehabilitative techniques that are unique to the student at hand, Coaches Addon and Ojeda aim to keep athletes competing and on the field. “At times we aren’t just trainers, but also mentors and advisors to these students who have come to us to help them feel better,” said Rob Addon. “The relationships cultivated in the training room, not just between us, but between the athletes themselves, is really special and the work each day is never dull.”

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