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Nolan Love came home to work with Blue Jays athletes

The Jamestown native has been working for JRMC since June of 2021.

Nolan Love
Jamestown High School athletic trainer speaks to linebacker/offensive lineman Evan Prescott on the sidelines during the Blue Jays game against Mandan on October 10, 2021 at Gates Field.
Contributed/ Jamestown Regional Medical Center
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JAMESTOWN — When Jamestown High School athletes get hurt, one of the people they turn to is athletic trainer Nolan Love. Love was once in their position, starring for the Blue Jays football, track and field and basketball teams.

As a result of once being a Blue Jays athlete, Love said he can relate to the athletes who are under his care better.

“I do my best to get them out there and if they can play, let them play but they also might not understand that we need to step on the brakes a little bit and take a little time off so we can get through the rest of the season rather than trying to push through and then end up missing the important games, the postseason,” Love said. “They always say it’s better to miss one or two games than the rest of the season. … I think the biggest thing is understanding what it’s like to be an athlete and what’s going on in their head.”

Love said his interest in athletic training originally started when he suffered a partial posterior cruciate ligament tear in his knee during his senior football season. During his recovery, he worked with Blue Jays athletic trainer, Adrienne Spieker, who gave him a glimpse into the day-to-day of an athletic trainer.

The decision wasn’t entirely made until Love was in college at North Dakota State University and he decided nursing wasn't for him. He wanted to find a way to stay in sports and health care.

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“I asked myself, ‘If I could do one thing for the rest of my life and money didn’t matter what would it be,’” Love said. “It would be to play sports and the next question is how close could I get to that being a career and with my interest in health care and an interest in sports. It kind of lined up perfectly being able to be a health care provider for mainly athletes and that.

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The presence of family and the comfortability with the surroundings made Love want to come home and work at the Jamestown Regional Medical Center. He also said he liked the fact that he could work with athletes from many different sports and the size of the school and of JRMC.

During the school year, Love’s days are busy taking care of the athletes, while during the summer it is much slower, despite the occasional athlete coming in thanks to an injury suffered during summer sports seasons. He has also been helping out at Blue Jays’ head football coach Bill Nelson’s Blue Jay Athletic Development camp.

“I’d help just basically be an extra eye in the weight room, watching kids' form, correcting that, helping coach Nelson out with something he needs,” Love said. “The beauty of me being at high school, if kids are playing summer baseball, softball, they're doing basketball. It’s their offseason too; they’re running through whatever sport they’re doing. If they get injured, I can look at it, give them some recommendations, give them some rehab for the injury, I can hop in and do that too.”

By virtue of the school having so many different sports, Love said there is not one type of injury that occurs most often. Love is the only athletic trainer at JRMC which he said comes with its perks and its downsides.

“I enjoy being the only AT (athletic trainer) but it’s not always perfect,” Love said in a text. “Being the only AT comes with its ups and downs. It’s nice in the sense of I get to do my own thing and I am able to do things the way I like to. But there are definitely times where it’s busy and having another AT would be helpful to bounce ideas off of and take some work.”

Despite spending the last part of his master's program doing his internship at the University of Jamestown, Love said he prefers working with the Blue Jays rather than the Jimmies.

“I do like the college setting but I like the high school setting better,” Love said. “I like the day to day, I like not really having to travel. I know the college travels, I only travel with football during the school year. I like the athletes, I like the level, working with the younger kids.”

Hello,
My name is Max O'Neill. I am the Sports Lead at The Jamestown Sun. I am a native New Yorker, who graduated from Ithaca College in 2020 with a degree in Television-Radio.
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