If you go over to Alexander Gymnasium, and if you make it down to the athletic training room, you’ll find tape, pre-wrap and ice bags wrapped on elbows, shoulders, knees and hips. Surely, you will find Erin Buenzli, who seems to always be there waiting to help out anyone with a cramp, twist, sprain or break. Her compassion and ever-caring, reassuring smile lets you know that she is one of the best.
Buenzli is the Head Athletic Trainer and NCAA compliance officer for Lawrence University. Next year, you might be seeing a lot more of her, as she’ll be coming across the river and moving into her new office at the Rec Center as the new director of wellness and recreation. For the athletes and student athletic trainers, the change of location won’t be easy because she has become family.
Buenzli got her Master’s Degree UW-Lacrosse in exercise science in 1998 after getting her Bachelor’s Degree in health promotion and athletic training. Her current position provides her with a valuable connection to student athletes, along with some very long road trips. Next year, she will be able to spend time as a spectator of more sporting events, rather than solely caring for athletes.
Buenzli admits that “being a part of the athletic teams and the daily contact with the student athletes will be something that [she] will truly miss once [her] move is complete.” Erin also looks forward to the challenges of her new position “promoting wellness on campus, working with students, faculty and staff to explore and understand what wellness means to them and continuing to use [her] athletic training skills with the Lawrence community.”
When asked about what the impact Buenzli has had in his life, Nick Thackston ‘12 said, “Ever since I met Erin freshman year she has been the best at caring for and teaching anyone who approaches her. I love going in the training room, not for care but to talk to her about ways to improve in my training and to absorb any other knowledge she has to offer.”
For those of you who do not know Buenzli, she has a few simple rules. 1) Respect everyone. 2)… Actually, she only has one rule. As long as you follow that rule, you will never have a problem. When the athletes come in each year to be introduced to Buenzli and her staff, the first thing she tells them is that she expects respect not only for her and the coaches, but also her staff of student athletic trainers and the team managers.
Buenzli has a wealth of knowledge, not just about athletic training, sports medicine and maintaining health, but also about life. We are fortunate that she is remaining a part of the community to share her knowledge with our ever-expanding campus. So, when you go to the recreation center next year make sure you introduce yourself to her, and allow yourself to absorb some of it.