Kent State Adds Sports Medicine Facility in MACC Annex
Kent State University is in the midst of building the Kent State Athletic Training and Education Center for its student-athletes. Located in the Memorial Athletic and Convocation Center Annex (behind the MAC Center) and spanning more than 10,000-square feet, the two-floor space will be a key asset for the Golden Flashes’ 425 student-athletes and is slated to be completed by early September.
“We are thrilled with President Warren and the university’s support for this project as it is truly in sync with her vision of ‘students-first’ as we address the health and safety of our student-athletes,” says Joel Nielsen, Kent State’s director of athletics. “Certainly, this facility will be an excellent recruiting tool, which will help attract the best and brightest because it will improve performances across the board.”
Fans are invited to an open house at the Kent State Athletic Training and Education Center on Oct. 1 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. during the 2016 Homecoming festivities. It will be one of five campus stops on the Blue and Gold Line trolley tour that day.
“It is extremely exciting to be in the process of getting a new Athletic Training Room,” says Trent Stratton, assistant athletic director of sports medicine. “We are thrilled to be acquiring this much space and the new equipment. By having this equipment and new technology, we hope to return students to competition more quickly and that we will be able to keep them going for a longer period of time. I am so appreciative of the support from President Warren, and I believe this shows her understanding of student-athlete well-being and her desire to make this facility the benchmark in the Mid-American Conference.
“The facility will also provide an opportunity to collaborate with other academic departments and open up new joint research efforts,” Stratton adds. “Plus, it will provide a new educational experience for the students in the Athletic Training Program.”
The sports medicine facility will have three therapy pools, including an underwater treadmill, and will also have an AlterG Anti-Gravity Treadmill, which will enable student-athletes to rehabilitate lower extremity injuries with less pain, reducing stress on joints and muscles.
“Having a new athletic training room is going to be great for our basketball players and all of the student-athletes here at Kent State,” says Rob Senderoff, men’s basketball coach. “The new technology, the added space and the new treatment areas are all going to make our training room one of the best in the nation and certainly the standard in the MAC. Treatment and recovery are such important aspects of success in today’s student-athlete that having a brand new, state-of-the-art facility, is going to help us in recruiting future Golden Flashes for years to come.”
Another highlight will be a cryotherapy unit, a cutting-edge technology use of cold therapy where the body is immersed in sub-zero temperatures to turbo-charge its ability to heal. Many professional athletes use cryotherapy treatments on a regular basis. The NBA, NFL and U.S. Olympic teams use cryotherapy in their training facilities to decrease recovery time for athletes, while increasing both athletic performance and metabolic rate.
“Our new training room with state-of-the-art equipment will impact every program and all of our students,” says Rob Marinaro, women’s soccer coach. “It is a major boost to our recruiting efforts and shows everyone that we are in the business of caring for our student-athletes.”
There will be 10 taping stations, which is an improvement from the three that are in the current athletic training room in the MAC Center, and it will have double the current number of treatment stations. There also will be new modalities to assist injured and healthy students.
“We will be able to return players to competition more quickly with modalities such as the underwater treadmill and a cryotherapy unit,” Nielsen adds.
The facility also will have a private conference room, exam rooms, changing rooms for the student-athletes and new rehab equipment, which includes a Shuttle MVP, a space designed exclusively for x-rays, as well as an array of new cardio equipment. There also will be balance and coordination equipment, including Korebalance and a Vision Coach Reaction Board.
The construction of the new sports medicine facility is part of Kent State’s strategic vision. Unveiled in March, the Game Plan is a comprehensive plan that maps out a strategic course for the department through 2020. Fans can stay up to date with all current information and progress with the Game Plan here.