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HBA Receives NATA Safe Sports School Award
Ryan Su

Hawaii Baptist Academy has received the National Athletic Trainers’ Association (NATA) Safe Sports School 1st Team Award. The award recognizes schools that provide safe athletic environments and highlights the importance of seeking the highest standards possible for the care, injury prevention and treatment for student-athletes.

HBA is the first school in the state of Hawaii - public or private - to receive this distinction three times.  HBA was also the first Hawaii school to ever receive this award (2014).  There are now upwards of 1500 schools nationwide that have been so recognized, including 7 others in Hawaii.  

“We are honored to receive this recognition from the NATA. From our 'A Team' (athletic department staff and athletic trainers) and coaches, to our administration and faculty, we have a larger team of individuals who are committed to the health and well-being of our student-athletes,” said Deren Oshiro, HBA’s Athletic Director.

Oshiro says the application process required over 75 pages of forms and supporting documents that included their program’s athletic handbook, emergency action plans for all of their practice and contest venues, injured athlete guidelines, heat illness prevention and safety guidelines, and concussion protocols.  In 2010, HBA was also one of the first Hawaii private school to institute a mandatory concussion baseline testing protocol.  Most schools have since instituted similar programs.  For it's concussion program, HBA initially used ImPACT.  Last year, it transitioned to a new program by SWAY Medical. 

“I’m very thankful to athletic trainers Sam Lee and Karin Carido for leading the way for us. As they often remind us, everyone here at HBA is a part of the school’s athletic health care team,” Oshiro said. "We would also like to extend a special thanks to Dr. Rachel Coel (Pediatric Sports Medicine at Kapiolani Bone and Joint Center), for her time, energy, and resources in assisting us through the years."

For this honor, HBA has received a banner and a certificate from the NATA. The banner will be displayed in HBA’s Dan Liu Gymnasium.

The NATA is an association of certified athletic trainers and others who support the athletic training profession with more than 45,000 members worldwide.

Each year, March is designated as National Athletic Training Month by NATA.  The goal is to highlight the importance of athletic trainers and the valuable service they provide to their schools and communities.