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Getting to Know Trish Bare Grounds

By Shannon Stern

 

Following action sports for a number of years, you see familiar faces at the events. One person I continually saw and heard of was Trish Bare Grounds.

         

Going into college, Trish knew she wanted to do something in the medical field. She was a pre-med major and had dabbled in athletic training in both high school and college. During her junior year, she decided that athletic training was the way to go. Although her dream of becoming a pediatric neurosurgeon was gone, she was still interested and fascinated by the brain and head injuries, leading her to her work with action sports athletes.

         

Trish lived near a BMX race track in South Florida and spent her time volunteering there. When a friend asked her to help with the Gravity Games, she accepted the offer. Through that experience, she went on to work with the Dew Tour as well as individual motocross, BMX, and skateboarding athletes.

         

In 1994, Trish started her company, Bare Essentials Sports Medicine. Her goal was to provide medical coverage for martial artists as well as to expose students to athletic training, giving them hands on experience. Being thrown into a situation and handling it hands on is something that Trish believes really helps a person develop their true skills.

         

One of Trish’s athletes that she works with is Brett Banasiewicz, who suffered a horrific accident last summer. She has been by his side since the accident occurred, acting as his cheerleader as well as a friend. Trish has used the opportunity to get to know him better and cater his treatment to him, not to every athlete in general. Brett, as Trish stated, has completely driven his miraculous recovery himself. “He is an amazing athlete,” Trish proclaimed. Both of their goals are to get Brett back to where he was before the accident, a goal that is doable.

         

Trish would love to get Brett back to his life, allowing her to get back to her life as well, including her family. Besides that goal, she also hopes to gain a sponsor for her company and has big plans for her company going forward. Her practice is “basic,” very down-to-earth, allowing Trish to be on an equal level with everyone. She does not see herself going big corporately, rather staying small and focused on the personalization and individualization that she loves.

         

On the topic of bigger corporations, Trish spoke about the recent action sports community’s corporate decisions, both the DC decisions as well as the recent X Games and Street League partnership. By going bigger, more corporate, it takes away from the sport itself. For instance, Trish remarked on how she loves working at both large-scale and smaller events, such as the Toronto Jam. She believes that everyone should have the right to healthcare, something that the smaller events often do not provide. Trish believes that the company’s recent decisions are all about the money. “It’s seen as a paycheck,” she remarked. “While some people do care about the athletes, some only see it as a paycheck.”