About Aledo ISD
In Aledo Texas, winning State Championships is not only a goal, but an expectation. Consistently winning requires athletes to stay healthy throughout the season, and returning to play as quickly as possible after an injury occurs. This is where Troy Little, Head Athletic Trainer at Aledo ISD, and his staff excel. When looking for a new tool to help them win, they turned to Sway.
Aledo ISD was specifically looking for a way to improve their processes throughout Baseline Testing, Sideline Evaluations, and the Return-to-Play. In addition to the issue that their current solution did not include objective balance measures, Aledo ISD’s existing tool presented a few pain points:
- Baseline Testing was time consuming, cumbersome, and required a computer lab.
- The existing tool did not have a solution for Sideline Evaluations.
- There was not a way to digitally or remotely monitor the athlete’s concussion symptoms throughout Return-to-Play.
Switching to Sway
Aledo ISD uses Sway for balance and cognitive testing as well as for tracking concussion symptoms throughout the entire injury cycle. Troy and his team switched to Sway in 2017 and since then have been able to baseline athletes in a fraction of the time. They can also easily perform sideline assessments and make an educated Return-to-Play decision.
When to baseline
Troy and the Aledo ISD team strategically plan their baseline testing during the off season of each sport to ensure they do not interrupt practice during the season.
Troy utilizes the coaching staffs to assist in administering the baseline sessions to make sure athletes stay focused on their assessments. Due to Sway’s simplicity and ease of use, many of the Aledo ISD coaches are comfortable administering baseline sessions on their own without the athletic trainer’s aid.
Prior to Sway, Troy and his team did not have a solution for easily gathering objective cognitive and balance measures from their athletes during a game. With Sway, Troy takes his athletes to a private area, performs a quick screening of concussion symptoms, balance, and cognition. He can immediately utilize objective data to make a decision on whether or not an athlete is safe to Return-to-Play.
In the case of a suspected injury, Troy works closely with his team doctor to ensure that they are aligned on the interpretation of the test results and their Return to Play decision.
Aligning Around Sway
In addition to working with the Team Doctor, Troy and his athletic training staff utilize the Sway Reports to communicate with the athletes, coaches, and the athlete’s parents to ensure everyone has a comprehensive understanding of the athlete’s current state and the reasoning behind the decisions being made.
Return-to-Learn & Return-to-Play
Throughout the Return-to-Learn and Return-to-Play processes, Troy and his team utilize Sway’s remote testing capabilities to proactively track concussion symptoms as well as balance and cognition. Troy can have his athletes take a symptom check in the morning before starting daily activities, and then again later in the day after some mental exertion.
The Sway platform documents all test and concussion symptoms history, which allows Troy and his team to easily track and review the status of each individual with an injury without the burden of additional paperwork. The ability to chart and easily evaluate where is athlete is through the mobile app allows them to access that data anywhere, at any time.
With Sway, Troy and his team have become more effective at providing care for their athlete’s across the entire injury lifecycle. Aledo ISD has streamlined the Baseline Testing, Sideline Evaluation, and Return-to-Play processes and have also leveraged Sway to create alignment with parents, coaches, players, and team doctors.