Working in a secondary school setting in North Dakota, Class B has its challenges as an athletic trainer. My athletes do not experience much rest time. Half of my football, wrestling, and track teams wake up early to help with farm chores, complete a full day of school, complete a 2-2.5 practice and will go home to toss hay bales or complete other farm chores before waking up and doing it all again the next day. On top of this, Class B is known for its smaller student population ratio, affecting the number of athletes coming out for sports. In a sport like football,
this means that a good portion of the team is playing both sides of the ball without rest for an entire football game. Exertional output for my athletes is high without always having the necessary time to recover. Another challenge is having a small athletic training room. Meaning the number of athletes that can be seen and treated simultaneously is very limited.

Firefly Introduction at the High School Level
   I first heard of the Firefly on “Athletic Training Twitter” and decided to reach out to see if they would send me samples to try as my girls' volleyball team headed to state and was slated to play three days in a row. They arrived just in time to be packed easily in my usual med kit without needing an additional bag. Each night after games, my hotel room turned into an on-the-road training room. As the girls complained of shin pain, sore knees, and tired legs after their first game, it was a great time to whip out the Firefly to try. My girls each wore a pair of the Firefly for over an hour and instantly reported feelings of fresher legs or reduced pain. The results were even better the next morning, and the girls raved about “fluttering”.

   “Fluttering” followed us back home as my girls talked about their treatment experiences at state. Working at the high school level, the cost is always a huge factor when looking for new modalities and treatment options for my athletes. The Firefly was an easy pitch to my administration. Reasonably priced for the number of units you wish to purchase, the Firefly is an affordable option for anyone looking for an easy way to onset recovery. As mentioned, my training room is small, so having an effective, portable modality has significantly increased the number of athletes I can see in a given time period. The Firefly is very user-friendly, as its operating instructions are very straightforward. I can simply hand a pair to an athlete, and they are out of my door. This allows the athlete the ability to increase their recovery on the go as they sit in class, sit on a two-hour bus ride to an away game, or are simply chilling at home for the night. The portability and independent aspect of the Firefly negates a portion of the need for training room hours set for recovery time, meaning the athletic trainer gets some extra rest too.

   Using the Firefly independently has certainly elicited its own results. I have experienced significant success with athletes reporting fresher legs and decreased general muscle soreness in multiple game stretches. Understanding that the Firefly increases blood flow from the hips down by 400% has made it a fundamental treatment option for various athletes with various conditions. I have seen success with several young female athletes who had significant Osgood-Schlatter’s and watched as their substantial swelling disappeared with the Firefly over only a couple of days. I have been impressed with the swift results the Firefly has delivered over other conditions and injuries, such as mid-foot pain, Achilles tendonitis, patellar tendonitis, and even an MCL sprain. Basketball season has also brought on a couple of nasty ankle sprains. I had two athletes with an ankle sprain where the swelling was so substantial that neither malleolus was visible, and the ankle and bottom of their calf could not be distinguished. Even with rehabilitation exercises, athletes with ankle sprains like these usually do not return to play for over a week due to the amount of swelling, pain, and ecchymosis. In these cases, I paired the Firefly with rehab exercises and even my Game Ready machine, and these kids were back on the court in only a couple of days with an ankle brace and a treatment plan for continued recovery.

Affordable, portable, and results-backed, the Firefly has changed the game of recovery for athletes in the high school setting!!!


Hannah Perry, LAT, ATC
Essentia Health
Northern Cass High School
Hunter, North Dakota

March 06, 2024
Tags: High School