PBATS/Henry Schein PLAY Visits Tampa Bay to Provide Health Education

From left, Joe Benge, Minor League Coordinator; Mark Vinson, Assistant Athletic Trainer; Ron Porterfield, Head Athletic Trainer; Me, Henry Schein Southeast Regional Sales; Paul Harker, Assistant Athletic Trainer; Damien Martinez, Taylor Hooton.

On Saturday, June 27 I attended the Professional Baseball Athletic Trainers Society (PBATS) and Henry Schein Annual Tampa Bay Rays PLAY event at Tropicana Field. Henry Schein and PBATS host many of these PLAY events every summer around the country to encourage children to stay healthy by highlighting health education in a fun way.  I was so rewarded by the children’s faces at this event as they entered the ballpark. They had such amazement in their eyes when they walked onto the field — most had only seen the ballpark on television.

On the field this year we had 50-60 children aged 6-16. The Tampa Bay Ray athletic training staff started off with a brief talk on the importance of stretching and warming up and immediately got the children involved with stretching and agility exercises. Then the kids got to play wiffle ball games out in right field.

After the kids were worn out we rallied them back to the stands to take a seat with their parents, which was when I started talking to them about healthy lifestyles. My main goal was to give them an idea of what they should be doing throughout the day to make sure they stay as healthy as possible. I talked about the importance of brushing their teeth, wearing sunscreen, washing their hands, proper nutrition, and activity and rest. The parents were really grateful for this interactive discussion. After my speech a representative from the Taylor Hooten Foundation talked about the danger of steroids. Tampa player David DeJesus concluded the program with a Q&A and photo session with the children. Each family left with a goody bag sponsored by Henry Schein Cares containing a toothbrush, floss, toothpaste, athletic tape and reminder sheet of everything from the day.

When I started working at Henry Schein I participated in a back-to-school event which was pretty remarkable. It was one of the first things that showed me how much this company cares about people and it truly transcends into the workplace. Being able to bring a charity like PLAY to Henry Schein and having them jump at the opportunity to help is just one example of how much Henry Schein Cares. I would attend this event and help out 100 times over; the Rays’ staff are all wonderful people and put on a well-organized and beloved event.

For more pictures from our other play events, follow Henry Schein Medical on Facebook.


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