Behind the Scenes at Cardiff City FC

Pitch side medical team assisting an injured player at Cardiff city football club.
Lubas Medical pitch side team assisting an injured player at Cardiff City.

How elite players are kept safe

The Medical Team at Cardiff City regularly receive praise & recognition from visiting teams for the quality of their set up.

Here's how Lubas fit in with the team, & how you can prepare in any sport, at any level...

1. The Medical Team

The Lubas pitch side medical team consists of 4 medics & an ambulance crew, all with professional qualifications & trained in Lubas Sports Trauma Management. Our purpose is to support all medical staff & manage any traumatic injuries to players of both teams & officials.

Each member of the team has a specific role in dealing with an injured player depending on the type of injury.

To function safely & efficiently, we work closely with Cardiff City's full time medical staff, led by the team physio & head of medical (Matthew May) and team doctor (Professor Len Noakes).

Everyone understands their role & responsibility within the set up. The visiting medical team are brought up to speed during a pre-match medical meeting before every game. Medical teams clarify the support that's available & the plan in the event of a serious (or multi-player) injury.

It's vital for player safety to run through these plans pre-match so both teams fully understand & clarify the procedures.

2. Planning & Communication

In addition to pre-match briefings, the Cardiff City medical staff & Lubas pitch side team run through monthly practical training together.

We run through various scenarios including spinal injury, lower limb fractures & cardiac arrest. We practice the management of injury & transfer to the medical room.

Scenarios ensure everyone in both the Lubas pitch-side team & Cardiff's medical staff fully understand their role during the management of a serious injury.

There is also a set procedure in place for our ambulance crew to quickly & efficiently transfer a player to hospital in an emergency. This has been utilised on several occasions.

3. Equipment

The Lubas team & the medical staff at Cardiff City work together to ensure all medical equipment required is available & fit for purpose.

There are 3 areas that require fully stocked medical equipment:

Individuals from the medical team share responsibility for checking the medical kit.

The kit includes emergency drugs & life saving equipment (such as defibrillators, airways, oxygen, fluids etc) & immediate trauma management kit (Entonox, splints, spinal immobilisation & extraction equipment etc).

The emergency kit must always be available, in the place it's needed, when required. All equipment is regularly checked between games to ensure working order & check expiries & stock levels.

4. Teamwork

Football is a team game both on & off the pitch. We've been very lucky to work within such a supportive & inclusive medical team at Cardiff City.

The team fully understands the importance of both player safety & staff welfare. The camaraderie created at Cardiff City only helps to develop trust & confidence in the medical staff to do their jobs.

There aren't many teams that offer the players, & their families basic first aid training. But we're fortunate to work with a group of players at Cardiff that understand the importance of the medical team.

We provide basic first aid training for players, coaches & their families to help enhance this understanding. This also give them the basic knowledge required if they ever need to deal with an emergency.

The togetherness & family spirit at Cardiff City was truly evident this year. The support shown for team Dr, Professor Len Noakes, in his learn CPR campaign following the tragic death of his daughter, was incredible.

It was a privilege to contribute & take part of the film he created. You can watch it below, but we encourage everyone to watch & share it here:

All of these elements are relevant in all sports at all levels. We transfer the same mindset into grassroots, local & amateur sports as we do at elite level.

The key is remembering that player safety is the most important element of pitch side medical care at all levels.

This blog will help you to analyse your own planning, communication, preparation & teamwork skills. Is there anything you can do to improve these skills in your medical team?

If you are qualified in Lubas Sports Trauma Management, FASE 1 or FASE 2, join our "Medics for Sport" Facebook group for jobs, experience & more information.

How to treat shock after an accident.

The term “shock” is often misunderstood. It can conjure up images of someone dealing with a traumatic experience being “cured” or comforted with a cup of sugary tea! But shock in medical terms relates to a physiological and potentially life-threatening condition.

To help you understand what type of shock we are talking about, here are some pointers for understanding, recognising & managing shock.

What is Shock?

Shock is the reduction of blood & oxygen to the organs and tissues of the body due to a problem with circulation. If untreated, shock can be fatal.

What causes Shock?

Shock is usually caused by a drop in blood pressure. This reduces the amount of oxygen to your vital organs and tissues.

The drop in blood pressure can be commonly caused by high volume blood loss (hypovolaemic shock), problems with the heart (cardiogenic shock) and severe allergic reactions (anaphylactic shock) among other things

What are the signs & symptoms of shock?

Someone suffering from shock will likely show the following symptoms:

What is the treatment for shock?

If you suspect someone is suffering from shock, you should do the following:


Shock is always brought on by an underlying problem or condition. Recognising the symptoms and acting quickly to get further help is vitally important if you suspect shock.

We provide more in-depth information and training regarding shock on our First Aid for Sport & Exercise (FASE 1) course (link to FASE 1). We also offer further online content at

Related articles (Shock section)

Ceri Q&A answers!

Here are the Answers to the Ceri Q&A. We would like to thank everyone for taking part. We hope you enjoy the answers and be on the look out for more Q&A'S in the future!

Q: My husband does a lot of running but gets bad shin splints. What’s the best way to treat this?

A: Shin splints is the term used to describe shin pain usually brought on by exercise. It is thought that the pain originates from the tissues around the bone swelling but can also be a sign of a stress fracture. 

They usually occur when people weight bare through their legs for an excessive amount of time or for example run on a hard surface with inappropriate footwear. 

They are easily treated with rest from the activity for up to 3 weeks, ice to the affected area for 10 minute periods every few hours for the first day or 2 and over the counter pain medication. If symptoms do not resolve, then seek help from your GP as this may indicate small stress fractures in the tibia. They may be prevented if your husband stretches well before exercise and ensures he is wearing the correct footwear.

Q: What are the most valuable skills you learnt while being a nurse?

A: I would have to say that although learning vital lifesaving skills were important it was learning how to communicate with people, especially those in pain or receiving bad news that was most valuable.

Q: How do you apply for work with Lubas?

A: If we require full time staff, we usually advertise the post on our social media. If you want to work with us on an ad hoc basis providing First Aid or medical cover at sporting or filming events then you can email a C.V to   We will invite you in for an informal interview and then if successful add you to our database.

Q: Hi Ceri, what is the minimum age children can learn CPR?

A: Whilst there is no minimum age set for children to learn CPR, research has shown that children under the age of 11 lack the physical strength to administer quality compressions to adults. However, it is possible to teach children about CPR and defibrillators from a younger age.  CPR is now being brought into the high school curriculum which will allow 11-16 to learn CPR. The resuscitation council U.K also runs restart a heart day each year in October to encourage young people to learn CPR.  We have taught year 6 students CPR on these days and have been impressed with their willingness to learn the skill.

Q: What do you love most about doing event and film cover?

A: For me it’s covering the construction of the sets, it always amazes me how an empty wooden room becomes a house from the 40’s or a room in a mythical castle.  The set builders are truly gifted people.

Q: I’m looking to become a nurse, is there any advice you’d give for someone just starting out?

A: I would recommend nursing as a career to anyone as it is such a diverse job that can take you in many directions.  I would advise you to learn from your mentors and never forget the patient should always be your priority.

Q: It’s cool that you have worked in the premier league, do you feel there is more pressure working at that level?

A: Yeah, it was pretty cool, especially as I got to do it with Cardiff City.  There is pressure at any level you are working at.  In the premier league, you are conscious that there are cameras watching you, but you have support from a medical team.  At lower levels, the pressure comes from there being a lack of support.  In all situations, I follow the same structured approach to ensure the injured player always receives the correct care.

Q: Hello Ceri, I’m still a medical student but want to get into working pitchside, what courses & qualifications would I need to help me reach this goal?

A: There are a variety of courses we offer to help you reach your goal.  Our FASE1 course teaches the basic first aid skills required for working pitchside.  Our FASE2 course concentrates on more advanced first aid skills and how to assist a healthcare professional in the pitchside team. Our Sports Trauma Management course is aimed at healthcare professionals who would be team leader pitch side and offers instruction in advanced techniques.  It is always a good idea to gain experience too so maybe once you have completed a course you could volunteer to offer assistance at university events.

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