October 25, 2013
Article by Global Pre-Meds
Hospital doctor shadowing & global health experience programs.
A career in sports medicine is an interesting option if you are interested in exercise, medicine or sports science. As a medical professional qualified in sports medicine you could work with healthy athletes and help them optimize their athletic performance or you could also work with injured people who might not necessarily be athletes.
Apart from this, sports medicine offers career options to students who have an interest in helping athletes via the psychology or nutrition fields. A sports doctor might treat patients in a clinic or hospital setting. On the other hand, some sports doctors also work exclusively with a specific sports team and may also accompany the players as they travel to different tournaments.
Students who aspire to become a sports doctor will have to pass the MCAT in order to gain entry into medical school. Sports medicine is typically a subspecialty and most sports doctors will go on to complete an MD or a DO degree. These are 4-year programs and the students will have to complete their clinical residency. In addition to this, you will have to get a CAQ qualification, specifically for Sports Medicine.
In order to prepare for this, you are required to complete a 2-year sports medicine fellowship at a rehabilitation facility, university athletic department or hospital. In these two years, you will be able to treat and learn about different kinds of athletic-related injuries and will learn diagnosis and treatment methods. In addition, you will gain experience in rehabilitative techniques, orthopedic surgeries, performance psychology, brain trauma and nutrition. Orthopedic surgeons can also apply for fellowships in these particular fields but they do not require the added qualification of CAQ certificate.
Some sports doctors also prefer not to work with any individual clients and opt for research positions. They may work with research institutes or with pharma companies. The sports medicine landscape is vast and varied. No matter which field you eventually veer towards, sports medicine is definitely an interesting and lucrative career choice particularly if you have an inherent interest in sports.
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Gap Medics provides year-round hospital work experience for people aged 16 and over. Our shadowing placements offer a unique insight into the work of doctors, nurses, midwives and dentists – helping students to focus their career aspirations before embarking upon medical training.