SmartTeams: A Holistic Approach To Sports Safety

Building on the Six Pillars™ concussion risk management model featured in its PBS documentary, The Smartest Team: Making High School Football Safer,  MomsTEAM Youth Sports Safety Institute is working with national, state, regional and local youth sports organizations (YSOs), university athletic training departments, parents, health care professionals, allied non-profits, governmental agencies and other experts to aggregate and/or develop and disseminate comprehensive, sport- and issue-specific, and easy-to-understand "best practice" standards of care templates and checklists covering all aspects of youth sports health and safety, from injury prevention and risk reduction, and nutrition and hydration guidelines, to preventing all forms of physical, psychological and sexual abuse. Once such best practices are established, local programs will be encouraged to apply to become SmartTeams.

Smart Teams play safe

The Institute will celebrate, highlight and promote SmartTeam programs on this website and via social media, and add them to a database identifying every program that has achieved SmartTeam. In the fall of 2014, six pilot programs were conducted  around the country, coordinated by the following outstanding athletic training educators:

Tracey Covassin, Ph.D., ATC
Associate Professor
Undergraduate Athletic Training Program Director
Michigan State University
East Lansing, Michigan
For full biography, click here.
John P. Wood, D.O., Endowed Chair for Sports Medicine
Professor, Athletic Training Program
Director, Interdisciplinary Research Laboratory,& Director, Athletic Training Practice-Based Research Network, Department of Interdisciplinary Health Sciences
A.T. Still University, Mesa, Arizona
For full biography, click here.
Director Athletic Training 
Clinical Assistant Professor of Athletic Training
The University of Tulsa
Tulsa, Oklahoma 

For full biography, click here.

Gary Wilkerson, EdD, ATC
Graduate Athletic Training Education Program
Department of Health & Human Performance
University of Tennessee at Chattanooga
Chattanooga, Tennessee
For full biography, click here.
Susan Yeargin, Ph.D., ATC
Assistant Professor
Physical Education and Athletic Training Department
University of South Carolina
Columbia, South Carolina
For full biography, click here.
Marisa A. Colston, PhD, ATC
UC Foundation Professor of Health and Human Performance
HHP Graduate Coordinator; AT Program Director
Health and Human Performance
University of Tennessee Chattanooga
Chattanooga, Tennessee

Further details about the SmartTeamsTM program were announced by Dr. McLeod and the pilot program coordinators at the 2014 SmartTeams Play Safe Summit at the Harvard Medical School on Monday, September 15, 2014 (see video below), with one, the Grand Prairie, Texas, SmartTeam program coordinated by Cindy Trowbridge from the University of Texas at Arlington, featured two days later on NBC's "Today Show."

For more information about the SmartTeams program, send an email to

In order to launch the program nationally in 2015, we need your help. To make a tax-deductible contribution to MomsTEAM Youth Sports Safety Institute, click here.


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