For Algoma High School Athletic Trainer Kim Yaeger, there’s no such thing as a typical day – and that’s the way she likes it.
For more than a decade now, Yaeger has made her work home (one of them, anyway) in the high school’s athletic training room. She’s there for everything from taping to addressing acute issues, coming up with practice plans and covering home athletic events. No two athletes and no two days are alike.
“I never know what will walk into my athletic training room on a daily basis,” Yaeger said. “I love working with high school athletes because they are a very motivated group. And they’re a fun group to work with! You never know what they are going to do or say. It keeps me on my toes and I like to think it helps to keep me young.”
Yaeger initially considered physical therapy but ultimately discovered it wasn’t the right career path for her. She remained interested in the medical profession and she enjoyed watching sports, so athletic training seemed like a natural next step.
She’s also a people person. Hands down, working with people is the best part of Yaeger’s job, she said.
“I get to work with a very diverse group of people,” she said. “Whether it’s working with the doctors, my coworkers, school administration or the athletes at school, everyone brings something different to my day. So definitely, my interaction with people is the best part.”
When she’s not at the high school, Yaeger coordinates pre-participation exams for athletes at various Bellin Health clinics. It keeps her plenty busy, but not so busy that she doesn’t find time to have fun traveling and, in the summer, watching her dad race stock cars. She’s also a music lover who attends as many concerts and live music events as she can, totaling about 50 each year.
Asked how it feels to make a difference in the lives of the students she works with, Yaeger pauses, then offers an unassuming answer.
“I guess it feels pretty good,” she says. “I don’t necessarily think in those terms – I’m just doing my job the best I can, whether that is helping an athlete with an injury or just listening to them on a good or bad day. It’s all about the athletes.”