1. General Overview:
Is athletic training a good career? For many, becoming an athletic trainer (AT) is not just a dream profession/career, but it is a calling to help others. The job brings about a sense of satisfaction for those who are certified athletic trainers. These healthcare professionals are, in part, responsible for the overall, comprehensive, healthcare of their patients (athletes). These patients typically range from youth to adult ages and are most often the active population or those who participate in sports. Ultimately, ATs are allied healthcare practitioners who work with a wide array of patients. Again, is athletic training a good career? If you ask me the answer is overwhelmingly, YES! As an athletic trainer I get to offer comprehensive health care to the active population. I care for individuals suffering from acute and chronic conditions/injuries, as well as those looking to increase their physical performance. Athletic training is a phenomenal career for those who are looking to help others and enjoy working with the physically active.
What does an athletic trainer do? Athletic trainers are highly qualified health care professionals who render care and treatment, in collaboration with a physician as a part of the Sports Medicine Team. Certified athletic trainers provide services such as – primary care, injury and illness prevention, health and wellness promotion, emergent care, examination and clinical diagnosis, therapeutic intervention and rehabilitation of injuries and illnesses, and healthcare administration. (https://www.nata.org/about/athletic-training)
Caring about the health and well-being of athletes is a key reason many become an athletic trainer. Well… what does an athletic trainer do? An athletic trainer is often the first to arrive on the scene for an injured athlete and is the first to evaluate and assess the injury for immediate care. Athletic trainers also evaluate patients for many different injuries and illnesses. A quality assessment of the athlete enables them to make a clinical diagnosis for appropriate treatment, rehabilitation, and/or referral. Becoming an AT enables you to provide comprehensive care that will help the athlete get back to their activity or sport as quickly as possible. Because of this comprehensive care an AT provides, the rapport built with the athletes is not found in many other professions.
In the best athletic training programs you are offered many opportunities to help other people; to aid those who need your knowledge and skill set. Depending on your career choices after you earn your master’s degree in athletic training and become a certified athletic trainer, you’ll be ready to work with a wide range of athletes in various settings. athletic trainers are in demand at a wide range of businesses, organizations, schools, healthcare settings and more, including:
- Public and private secondary schools, colleges and universities, professional and Olympic sports.
- Youth leagues, municipal and independently owned youth sports facilities.
- Physician practices.
- Rural and urban hospitals, hospital emergency rooms, urgent and ambulatory care centers.
- Clinics with specialties in sports medicine, cardiac rehab, medical fitness, wellness and physical therapy.
- Occupational health departments in commercial settings, which include manufacturing, distribution and offices to assist with ergonomics.
- Police and fire departments and academies, municipal departments, branches of the military.
- Professional performing arts organizations (such as the Cirque du Soleil or NY Knicks City Dancers), and collegiate-level dance and music programs.
2. Benefits of having a Specialized Athletic Trainer:
Is athletic training a good career? Well… it is often said that the athletic trainers have the best seats in the house. If the AT does happen to be with a sports team or athlete, we typically are on the bench or in the dugouts next to the coaches and athletes. Athletic trainers get to take part in the limelight associated with athletic events and the ups and down of the wins or losses. These practitioners get to build rapport with each athlete and coaches, and often these ties last for years.
Is athletic training a good career…what about job satisfaction? How satisfied are athletic trainers with their job? Seventy eight percent (78%) said they were satisfied with their job and seventy seven percent (77%) said they find that their job makes the world a better place or helps to make someone else’s life better. (https://www.owlguru.com/career/athletic-trainers/job-description/)
The job prospects for athletic trainers are good. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, this field is projected to grow 16 percent from 2019 to 2029, much faster than the average for all occupations. Demand for athletic trainers is expected to increase as people become more aware of the effects of sports-related injuries, and as the middle-aged and older population remains active.
3. Why is it the best option for athletes?
Individuals who are interested in athletic training need to find colleges with an athletic training program. All certified athletic trainers must complete their university education through an accredited athletic training program, much like other medical and healthcare professionals. The best athletic training programs, like University of Idaho, offer students high quality academic and clinical education opportunities, which enables the athletic trainers extremely versatile healthcare practitioners. ATs are one of the few practitioners who see the athlete before an injury for preventative care and screens. An example of this is the athletic trainer aiding in and/or hosting pre-participation screens/exams. This enables athletes to be evaluated prior to starting an activity, job, or sport to help reduce the risk of injury. Next, the AT is typically the first practitioner to see the athlete during or immediately after the injury. The athletic trainer is trained to evaluate, assess, and care for the athlete with an acute injury. After the acute injury or trauma, the athletic trainer will be with the athlete through the complete injury treatment and rehabilitation. Ultimately, the athletic trainer will be by the athlete’s side from initial injury to return to sport/activity.
The athletic trainer is often the keystone to the comprehensive care of an athlete. These healthcare practitioners manage and communicate with the athlete, parents, coaches, and physicians. Athletic trainers are involved in nearly every aspect of the athlete’s care — from the moment the athlete becomes injured, until the athlete is ready to fully return to their activity or sport.
There are over 300 colleges with an athletic training program, but University of Idaho’s program is like no other in the nation… We are one the best athletic training programs.
Our program is focused on individual student preparation for a contemporary practice in Athletic Training/Sports Medicine. We have OVER 150 Clinical Education Sites Nationwide. We offer our course work in a time-considerate, online hybrid format so students can be IMMERSED in clinical education from Fall to Spring semesters. This enables you to learn from the experts in athletic training.
The University of Idaho Athletic Training Program will cultivate your individual development into a competent and skill practitioner who will be prepared for whatever setting they want to practice.