From high school athletes to professional sports teams, athletic trainers are some of the first responders when injuries occur on the field. These licensed health care professionals are healers, analyzers and educators that work with physicians to treat and prevent sports-related injuries.
Athletic trainers provide first aid or emergency care and teach athletes how to avoid common injuries. Under the direction of a consulting or team physician, they evaluate patients and develop and carry out rehabilitation plans. They may also plan athletic programs that are compliant with state and federal regulations, as well as deal with budgets and policy implementation.
They commonly work at high schools, universities, athletic training facilities, physical rehabilitation centers, and with professional sports teams. Becoming an athletic trainer requires at least a bachelor’s in athletic training plus certification or licensure in most states, and many go on to earn a master’s degree. Jobs for this role are projected to grow 16% by 2029, which is much faster than average.