Joseph Dymond – Independent Project

Joseph Dymond – Independent Project

Class of 2017

Introduction to Topic

The purpose of this project was to spread awareness on the rising problem of youth sports overuse injuries. This targeted mainly the parents of these children who are affected who I believe must be informed on the risks so that they know how to manage their child’s physical activity. I was particularly interested in this topic because of my own experiences with overuse injuries at a young age. I have loved playing baseball my entire life and an injury that I sustained from playing too often without rest ultimately set back my progress. ultimately, I had to step away from the sport for months to recover. By the time I returned, I had fallen behind in skill level amongst my peers and I am still working hard to this day to catch up. I wanted, through this project, to be able to prevent a scenario similar to mine from happening to as many young athletes as I can.

Project Description

For my independent project, my goal was to ultimately help spread awareness to many families that are involved in youth athletics through local recreation councils about overuse injuries in children. Before I could educate others on the risks and consequences of these injuries, I had to be educated myself on the topic. Over the course of 2 months I spent a total of 40 hours with different professionals that deal with either the prevention, diagnosis, or treatment of overuse injuries. I shadowed these professionals during their everyday work to see what was involved in the process of dealing with these injuries. I also questioned many of these people to better understand the nature of these injuries. Using the knowledge I gained from my experiences, I created a website where I included information on the most common overuse injuries within the most common youth sports. This website contained information such as definitions, prevention methods, and treatment options for each injury. Meanwhile, this information was made understandable to the general public. I had my website linked on a recreation council page. In addition to this, I attended the opening day for Hickory youth baseball where I showcased flyers and a yard sign I had made which advertised my website. This all was done in hopes that the information provided would reach many families and help them prevent youth overuse injuries.

Experience Description

For my independent project, my goal was to ultimately help spread awareness to many families that are involved in youth athletics through local recreation councils about overuse injuries in children. Before I could educate others on the risks and consequences of these injuries, I had to be educated myself on the topic. Over the course of 2 months I spent a total of 40 hours with different professionals that deal with either the prevention, diagnosis, or treatment of overuse injuries. I shadowed these professionals during their everyday work to see what was involved in the process of dealing with these injuries. I also questioned many of these people to better understand the nature of these injuries. Using the knowledge I gained from my experiences, I created a website where I included information on the most common overuse injuries within the most common youth sports. This website contained information such as definitions, prevention methods, and treatment options for each injury. Meanwhile, this information was made understandable to the general public. I had my website linked on a recreation council page. In addition to this, I attended the opening day for Hickory youth baseball where I showcased flyers and a yard sign I had made which advertised my website. This all was done in hopes that the information provided would reach many families and help them prevent youth overuse injuries.

Innovation Description

For my biomed program senior capstone project, I have designed a youth sports overuse injury awareness campaign that targeted Maryland recreation councils to help in the awareness effort. My ultimate goal for this project was to spread awareness, in my community, of the dangers that come with sports and the overuse of the body.

 

In this effort, I have spent over fifty hours throughout the past few months for website research and development, informational signs and flyers design and production, flyers and signs distribution, and recreation council leaders outreach emailing. In addition, I attended a monthly recreation council meeting and presented my campaign to directors of many different sports groups.

 

The first thing that I worked on for the project was research. When I first started out, I had no problem finding resources that addressed this topic. However, after much though, I decided that my resources had to be from very reputable sources with no profitable intentions. My feeling was that in order for recreation councils to adopt this effort, they would have to be assured that correct information was being promoted to their community and that there was no intent to have anyone profit from them. It could not have any advertising value. I also made email contact with a couple of nonprofit national youth advocate organizations in order to find more research resources on youth sports overuse injuries. It was pleasantly surprising that two organizations responded within hours. They were both very helpful and applauded me for doing work on this issue. One stated that after concussion awareness fades, youth sports overuse injuries will be the next hot topic. All of the research that I did was quite a learning experience. I thought that it would only take a couple of hours of my time. It actually took around five hours total to get a list of internet and other resources together that met the content criteria that I had outlined for my informational website.

 

The next phase of my project was the development of my website, overuseinjury.info. My goal was to hammer out the website by the beginning of April so that I would be able to start promoting well before the rec baseball season begun. I was not sure that my small budget of two hundred dollars would cover the costs for hosting and building a website in addition to the flyers and signs that were planned. However, Godaddy.com ended up to only cost thirty five dollars for one year. This included a subscription for their simple site builder software. This was very affordable, however, the site builder software was somewhat limited in its’ design capability.

 

The free Godaddy site builder software gave me a small amount of page design templates to work with. Building the site was a real learning and creative adventure in digital production. I do have some experience at video editing and thought that this would give me an edge building a website. Turns out that even though the software was somewhat user friendly, It was a long process of trial and error. The simple task of adding pictures took a couple of hours to learn. That became easier after the first few that I added, but it still was not as quick as first thought. In the beginning I considered paying for an upgrade so that I could incorporate lots of videos and pictures. However, not only was there a time factor, I soon came to the realization that it would be tough to find video resources that did not include some kind of advertisement. When brainstormed about my project, on of my first thoughts was that not many rec councils would send people to the website if it was full of advertisements.

 

Adding text and links within my site was also a timely process. The builder software only provided a very small window to add and edit text. It was very difficult to work with such a little space. I would enter a paragraph, render it, and then preview it. If there were any typos or errors, I would have to go through the whole editing and rendering process again. As I went on, I got more efficient at the whole process. It still took hours and days to get all of the written content in place and looking good.

 

The whole process of adding links into the pages was also very time consuming. Again, the window that was used for adding text was small and it took a little bit of time to learn how to create a link. Every link had to be tested to make sure it went to the correct resource. One of my objectives was to create a one stop shop for links to various sites that cover all aspects of the youth overuse injury issue. So, there are a lot of links within the pages that needed to be created and tested which took many hours to complete.

 

Finally, the last step of creating my website was to go live. After all content was added and tested, I published the site. Before promoting it, I sent the link to many friends and family so that they could give me feedback. It is a good thing that I did this because they picked up on many little things that needed to be improved. After a week of review, the site was published.

 

Another part of my awareness campaign was to create and distribute flyers and signs that capture attention and directed people to my website. The first thing that I had to do was come up with an attention getting slogan. After about an hour of brainstorming, I came up with 3 different slogans. It is always good to get opinions from others, so I had my mom and dad look at them. In the end, we all agreed that one of them was the best. I used Vistaprint to design the flyers and signs. My dad had used them before and had a great experience. The design software on the website was very easy to use, however, there was still a lot of time involved. I had to find a great picture that complimented my slogan, determine the best resolution and size, and place it the best way within the flyer. I was really impressed with Vistaprint and the cost was really low. It was only one hundred and thirty dollars to get five hundred flyers and two large yard signs printed and delivered. This left me way under budget. They arrive in four days and looked really nice.

 

One last thing that needed to be done before taking the campaign to the people was to frame and laminate 40 flyers. Two of these went on each of 20 different baseball field fences around town. They had to be laminated in order for them to last through the weather. This part of the production was time consuming due to all of the cutting, pasting, and laminating.

 

Finally, I had all of my marketing materials ready to go. The first thing that I did was to go out and place all of the laminated flywheelers around baseball fields. I punched holes in the laminated flyers and used zip ties to secure them to the fences. Next I traveled around to different convenience stores and grocery stores pinning some flyers to community bulletin boards. Unfortunately, a lot of the stores that I went in to did not have a community bulletin board. It made me smile and want to patronize the business if they had one. It felt like they were a real part of the community, not just a business. All of this took almost a full day of driving around to complete.

 

The last task in my project was to put it all together by reaching out to the community. First, I discovered and emailed 20 different rec baseball directors throughout Baltimore and Harford counties asking them to help spread awareness through a link to my website. One of the rec councils invited me to a meeting to present my project. I did a week later and all in attendance were interested in the issue. They offered to help me spread awareness in any way possible.

 

The last big push to reach the community was attending the Hickory and Fountain Green Baseball Opening Day Celebration. That day, my father and I set out early in the morning go out and hand out flyers to lots of young athletes and their parents. That morning, the weather forecast did not look good and I was afraid that the opening day festivities would be cancelled. Fortunately, the big rain held off until about 2pm and we were able to hand out a few hundred flyers. This was a very fun part of my project. Being out there to watch all of the kids having fun playing baseball and celebrating their community made me reflect on my younger baseball days. This experience also reinforced the idea that this awareness campaign is something that will make a difference in the future of many young athletes.

+ Project Topic

Introduction to Topic

The purpose of this project was to spread awareness on the rising problem of youth sports overuse injuries. This targeted mainly the parents of these children who are affected who I believe must be informed on the risks so that they know how to manage their child’s physical activity. I was particularly interested in this topic because of my own experiences with overuse injuries at a young age. I have loved playing baseball my entire life and an injury that I sustained from playing too often without rest ultimately set back my progress. ultimately, I had to step away from the sport for months to recover. By the time I returned, I had fallen behind in skill level amongst my peers and I am still working hard to this day to catch up. I wanted, through this project, to be able to prevent a scenario similar to mine from happening to as many young athletes as I can.

+ Project Overview

Project Description

For my independent project, my goal was to ultimately help spread awareness to many families that are involved in youth athletics through local recreation councils about overuse injuries in children. Before I could educate others on the risks and consequences of these injuries, I had to be educated myself on the topic. Over the course of 2 months I spent a total of 40 hours with different professionals that deal with either the prevention, diagnosis, or treatment of overuse injuries. I shadowed these professionals during their everyday work to see what was involved in the process of dealing with these injuries. I also questioned many of these people to better understand the nature of these injuries. Using the knowledge I gained from my experiences, I created a website where I included information on the most common overuse injuries within the most common youth sports. This website contained information such as definitions, prevention methods, and treatment options for each injury. Meanwhile, this information was made understandable to the general public. I had my website linked on a recreation council page. In addition to this, I attended the opening day for Hickory youth baseball where I showcased flyers and a yard sign I had made which advertised my website. This all was done in hopes that the information provided would reach many families and help them prevent youth overuse injuries.

+ Experience

Experience Description

For my independent project, my goal was to ultimately help spread awareness to many families that are involved in youth athletics through local recreation councils about overuse injuries in children. Before I could educate others on the risks and consequences of these injuries, I had to be educated myself on the topic. Over the course of 2 months I spent a total of 40 hours with different professionals that deal with either the prevention, diagnosis, or treatment of overuse injuries. I shadowed these professionals during their everyday work to see what was involved in the process of dealing with these injuries. I also questioned many of these people to better understand the nature of these injuries. Using the knowledge I gained from my experiences, I created a website where I included information on the most common overuse injuries within the most common youth sports. This website contained information such as definitions, prevention methods, and treatment options for each injury. Meanwhile, this information was made understandable to the general public. I had my website linked on a recreation council page. In addition to this, I attended the opening day for Hickory youth baseball where I showcased flyers and a yard sign I had made which advertised my website. This all was done in hopes that the information provided would reach many families and help them prevent youth overuse injuries.

+ Innovation

Innovation Description

For my biomed program senior capstone project, I have designed a youth sports overuse injury awareness campaign that targeted Maryland recreation councils to help in the awareness effort. My ultimate goal for this project was to spread awareness, in my community, of the dangers that come with sports and the overuse of the body.

 

In this effort, I have spent over fifty hours throughout the past few months for website research and development, informational signs and flyers design and production, flyers and signs distribution, and recreation council leaders outreach emailing. In addition, I attended a monthly recreation council meeting and presented my campaign to directors of many different sports groups.

 

The first thing that I worked on for the project was research. When I first started out, I had no problem finding resources that addressed this topic. However, after much though, I decided that my resources had to be from very reputable sources with no profitable intentions. My feeling was that in order for recreation councils to adopt this effort, they would have to be assured that correct information was being promoted to their community and that there was no intent to have anyone profit from them. It could not have any advertising value. I also made email contact with a couple of nonprofit national youth advocate organizations in order to find more research resources on youth sports overuse injuries. It was pleasantly surprising that two organizations responded within hours. They were both very helpful and applauded me for doing work on this issue. One stated that after concussion awareness fades, youth sports overuse injuries will be the next hot topic. All of the research that I did was quite a learning experience. I thought that it would only take a couple of hours of my time. It actually took around five hours total to get a list of internet and other resources together that met the content criteria that I had outlined for my informational website.

 

The next phase of my project was the development of my website, overuseinjury.info. My goal was to hammer out the website by the beginning of April so that I would be able to start promoting well before the rec baseball season begun. I was not sure that my small budget of two hundred dollars would cover the costs for hosting and building a website in addition to the flyers and signs that were planned. However, Godaddy.com ended up to only cost thirty five dollars for one year. This included a subscription for their simple site builder software. This was very affordable, however, the site builder software was somewhat limited in its’ design capability.

 

The free Godaddy site builder software gave me a small amount of page design templates to work with. Building the site was a real learning and creative adventure in digital production. I do have some experience at video editing and thought that this would give me an edge building a website. Turns out that even though the software was somewhat user friendly, It was a long process of trial and error. The simple task of adding pictures took a couple of hours to learn. That became easier after the first few that I added, but it still was not as quick as first thought. In the beginning I considered paying for an upgrade so that I could incorporate lots of videos and pictures. However, not only was there a time factor, I soon came to the realization that it would be tough to find video resources that did not include some kind of advertisement. When brainstormed about my project, on of my first thoughts was that not many rec councils would send people to the website if it was full of advertisements.

 

Adding text and links within my site was also a timely process. The builder software only provided a very small window to add and edit text. It was very difficult to work with such a little space. I would enter a paragraph, render it, and then preview it. If there were any typos or errors, I would have to go through the whole editing and rendering process again. As I went on, I got more efficient at the whole process. It still took hours and days to get all of the written content in place and looking good.

 

The whole process of adding links into the pages was also very time consuming. Again, the window that was used for adding text was small and it took a little bit of time to learn how to create a link. Every link had to be tested to make sure it went to the correct resource. One of my objectives was to create a one stop shop for links to various sites that cover all aspects of the youth overuse injury issue. So, there are a lot of links within the pages that needed to be created and tested which took many hours to complete.

 

Finally, the last step of creating my website was to go live. After all content was added and tested, I published the site. Before promoting it, I sent the link to many friends and family so that they could give me feedback. It is a good thing that I did this because they picked up on many little things that needed to be improved. After a week of review, the site was published.

 

Another part of my awareness campaign was to create and distribute flyers and signs that capture attention and directed people to my website. The first thing that I had to do was come up with an attention getting slogan. After about an hour of brainstorming, I came up with 3 different slogans. It is always good to get opinions from others, so I had my mom and dad look at them. In the end, we all agreed that one of them was the best. I used Vistaprint to design the flyers and signs. My dad had used them before and had a great experience. The design software on the website was very easy to use, however, there was still a lot of time involved. I had to find a great picture that complimented my slogan, determine the best resolution and size, and place it the best way within the flyer. I was really impressed with Vistaprint and the cost was really low. It was only one hundred and thirty dollars to get five hundred flyers and two large yard signs printed and delivered. This left me way under budget. They arrive in four days and looked really nice.

 

One last thing that needed to be done before taking the campaign to the people was to frame and laminate 40 flyers. Two of these went on each of 20 different baseball field fences around town. They had to be laminated in order for them to last through the weather. This part of the production was time consuming due to all of the cutting, pasting, and laminating.

 

Finally, I had all of my marketing materials ready to go. The first thing that I did was to go out and place all of the laminated flywheelers around baseball fields. I punched holes in the laminated flyers and used zip ties to secure them to the fences. Next I traveled around to different convenience stores and grocery stores pinning some flyers to community bulletin boards. Unfortunately, a lot of the stores that I went in to did not have a community bulletin board. It made me smile and want to patronize the business if they had one. It felt like they were a real part of the community, not just a business. All of this took almost a full day of driving around to complete.

 

The last task in my project was to put it all together by reaching out to the community. First, I discovered and emailed 20 different rec baseball directors throughout Baltimore and Harford counties asking them to help spread awareness through a link to my website. One of the rec councils invited me to a meeting to present my project. I did a week later and all in attendance were interested in the issue. They offered to help me spread awareness in any way possible.

 

The last big push to reach the community was attending the Hickory and Fountain Green Baseball Opening Day Celebration. That day, my father and I set out early in the morning go out and hand out flyers to lots of young athletes and their parents. That morning, the weather forecast did not look good and I was afraid that the opening day festivities would be cancelled. Fortunately, the big rain held off until about 2pm and we were able to hand out a few hundred flyers. This was a very fun part of my project. Being out there to watch all of the kids having fun playing baseball and celebrating their community made me reflect on my younger baseball days. This experience also reinforced the idea that this awareness campaign is something that will make a difference in the future of many young athletes.

By | 2017-05-12T03:07:55+00:00 May 12th, 2017|Biomed Capstone Project 2017|0 Comments

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