The Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports Development in its effort to enhance podium performance of Team Nigeria’s athletes at international competitions yesterday began a 2nd National Sports Medicine Symposium for medical personnel from the 36 states of the federation and Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
The 2-day training course focusing on basic fundamental principles in the area of injury prevention, performance optimization, periodic medical evaluation, basic life support, amongst other major components in able and disabled athletes, is organised by the department of sports medicine.
The seminar which is taking place at the VIP Lounge of Moshood Abiola National Stadium in Abuja and geared towards enhancing the skills and working relationships of medical personnel in their respective states in the area of the protection of athletes, health, prevention of injury and performance optimization in sports, is coming eight years after the first edition was held in 2013.
Director of sports medicine, Ministry of Youth and Sports Development, Dr. Paul Ohido, said the 2-day training course is aiming at enhancing the capacity of medical personnel that are saddled with the responsibility of handling athletes’ health care needs both at the local government and state levels.
He commended the minister of youth and sports development, Mr Sunday Dare and permanent secretary, Alhaji Ismaila Abubakar, for endorsing the training, saying sports medicine and science is relatively new in Nigeria but critical in athletes’ performance.
“The training course is about the development of sports medicine and science in Nigeria. We invited two medical personnel from each state of the federation and FCT to have this national sports medicine course.
“The essence of the training is to get the state medical personnel trained and build their capacity with sports medicine science because we appreciate the elite athletes we used at the national level from the states and local government levels. So, if they don’t have sports medicine and science support at that level, then we are just wasting our time because they are already in the wrong direction. Sports medicine is about performance in the modern time and not rehabilitation.
“There are so many issues around it which impact the performance of the athletes from the cradle. If you don’t put these ingredients into the athletes from the local government to state level, by the time they come to national levels as elite athletes, you have lost it. This is exactly what this course is about.
“So, I thank the Honourable Minister of Youth and Sports, Mr Sunday Dare and the permanent secretary, Alhaji Ismaila Abubakar for agreeing that this course take place eight years after the first edition was held in 2013,” Dr Ohido said.
Speaking to LEADERSHIP sports on the sideline of training, one of the participants from Enugu State, Okoh Joyce Chika, said the training course has opened their eyes to many new things in managing athletes’ health needs and commended the organisers for the opportunity given to them.