Athletic trainers help prevent and treat injuries for people of all ages. Their clients include everyone from professional athletes to industrial workers. Recognized by the American Medical Association as allied health professionals, athletic trainers specialize in the prevention, assessment, treatment, and rehabilitation of musculoskeletal injuries. Athletic trainers often are one of the first heath care providers on the scene when injuries occur, and therefore they must be able to recognize, evaluate, and assess injuries and provide immediate care when needed. They also are heavily involved in the rehabilitation and reconditioning of injuries. Athletic trainers should not be confused with fitness trainers or personal trainers, who are not health care workers, but rather train people to become physically fit. Athletic trainers often help prevent injuries by advising on the proper use of equipment and applying protective or injury-preventive devices such as tape, bandages, and braces. Injury prevention also often includes educating people on what they should do to avoid putting themselves at risk for injuries.
Athletic trainers work under the supervision of a licensed physician, and in cooperation with other health care providers. The level of medical supervision varies, depending upon the setting. Some athletic trainers meet with the team physician or consulting physician once or twice a week; others interact with a physician every day. The extent of the supervision ranges from discussing specific injuries and treatment options with a physician to performing evaluations and treatments as directed by a physician.
Salary Range: $30,300 – $69,140
Salary Notes: Most athletic trainers work in full-time positions, and typically receive benefits. The salary of an athletic trainer depends on experience and job responsibilities, and varies by job setting. The mean salary in Vermont is $44,190.
Where you can study:
Bridgewater University, Bridgewater, MA
Castleton University, Castleton, VT
Keene State College, Keene, NH
Norwich University, Northfield, VT
Plymouth State University, Plymouth, NH
Quinnipiac University, Hamden, CT
Salem State University, Salem, MA
Southern Connecticut State University, New Haven, CT
Springfield College, Springfield, MA
University of New England, Biddeford, ME
University of Vermont Dept. of Rehabilitation and Movement Science, Burlington, VT
Where you might work:
– Clinics – Colleges and Universities – Health Clubs – Hospitals – Schools – Sports Facilities – Military – Professional Sports
Job Outlook: Employment of athletic trainers is expected to grow much faster than the average for all occupations. Job prospects should be good in the health care industry, but competition is expected for positions with sports teams.
Education, Licensing and Certification: A bachelor’s degree is usually the minimum requirement to work as an athletic trainer, but many athletic trainers hold a master’s or doctoral degree. In 2016, 49 states required athletic trainers to be licensed or hold some form of registration. According to the National Athletic Trainers’ Association, 70 percent of athletic trainers have a master’s or doctoral degree. Athletic trainers may need a master’s or higher degree to be eligible for some positions, especially those in colleges and universities, and to increase their advancement opportunities. Because some positions in high schools involve teaching along with athletic trainer responsibilities, a teaching certificate or license could be required
Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education 512-733-9700
National Athletic Trainers’ Association 214-637-6282