The world of sports is changing. Football is on the decline because of the revelations that repeated concussions create a lifetime of problems, and sports like boxing are being replaced by even more brutal disciplines such as mixed martial arts. As a result, the demand for sports medicine professionals is on the rise. Here are 5 booming sports medicine career paths to consider.
Becoming a doctor of medicine or doctor of osteopathic medicine requires a doctorate, though the coursework both take is somewhat different. Job growth for medical doctors with expertise in sports medicine is expected to grow 14% between now and 2024, since athletes will continue to push themselves to their limits in the quest to win. Even more telling, demand for surgeons and doctors who can set broken bones is going to grow even faster. Average pay for these doctors is over $200,000 after they complete their residency.
The demand for physical therapists is expected to grow by a third over the next ten years. While tragic sports injuries get the attention, physical therapists also work with those recovering from strokes, extended bed rest and other types of injuries. Average pay for a physical therapist with a masters’ degree or higher is around $84,000. Licensure is required to work a physical therapist in all fifty states. Volunteer experience or residency may be required to earn your license.
A registered kinesiotherapist is a type of physical therapist. They develop and supervise exercise routines to help people recover mobility or strength or both after injury or illness. They may devise the exercise routine that an athletic trainer helps the patient go through. They are qualified to help people learn how to use prosthetic limbs and move as naturally as possible with it on.
Becoming an athletic trainer requires at least a bachelor’s degree. This job category is expected to see 21% growth over the next ten years. Licensure is required in most states in the U.S; to become a licensed trainer, they must graduate with at least a bachelor’s degree from an accredited athletic training program before passing an exam. They may work with people getting back into shape after an injury, but they are also supposed to train athletes to their peak without causing injury and do everything possible to prevent injury.
The administrative effort required to manage facilities in line with the bevy of state and federal regulations is only matched by the time and effort required to deal with insurance programs and public health programs. This has led to a rapid consolidation in in the healthcare industry where doctors, physical therapists and other medical professionals combine in one “system” to share the administrative back office costs. This has led in turn to greater demand for those who’ve completed an online master of healthcare administration in strategy and innovation.
Whether it is a nursing home managing physical therapists along with social workers or an orthopedic surgeon with physical therapists working in the next wing, they all need qualified people like a graduate of an online MHA program via ADU online. This allows doctors and therapists to focus on patients while someone else handles the patients, subcontractors and billing headaches.
Personal trainers do not have to be certified in most jurisdictions, though it is possible to become a certified personal trainer. Personal trainers should have a bachelor’s degree in physiology, kinesiology or similar field. Personal trainers may work in hospitals, rehabilitation facilities, gyms or private practice.
As you can see, there is no shortage of demand for sports medicine professionals. Demand for doctors and physical therapists is high and more skilled administrators are needed to manage the growing healthcare teams that supply all of the services the patient requires. This presents the perfect opportunity for graduates in the healthcare sector ready to fill any of these positions.