A sports physician, also referred to as a sports medicine physician, is a doctor who specialises in the diagnoses, treatment of illnesses and injuries for individuals involved in physical activities. These professionals also promote wellness and fitness to minimise potential injuries, and can work in a variety of industries. Sports physicians typically receive a base salary and may also receive bonuses based on the employer's profitability.
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Educational requirements for a sports physician are similar to those of any medical doctor (M.D.) These professionals must complete a bachelor's degree or premedical training, medical school, residency and internships averaging 8 to 11 years of education. After medical school, sports physicians typically start their specialisation in sports medicine during their internship. All physicians are required to obtain a license to practice professionally.
Along with salary, 88 per cent of these professionals reported receiving benefits including medical, dental and vision. In October 2010, Payscale reported the national average salary ranging between £52,289 and £113,269 per year. Bonuses ranged between £3,087 and £16,250 per year. The total average salary ranged between £52,820 and £129,276 per year.
Many believe these professionals only work with athletes, but most sports physicians work in a variety of industries including hospitals, physiotherapy and family medicine. A popular sports-related industry for this occupation is professional football. Payscale reports the highest salaries in the family medicine industry ranging between £54,726 and £109,006 per year (as of October 2010). In professional football, these professionals earned average salaries ranging between £33,696 and £97,130 per year (as of October 2010).
Although Payscale reports 54 per cent of these professionals having between one and four years of experience, salary generally increases as sports physicians gain professional experience. Sports physicians with 1 to 4 years of experience earned average salaries ranging between £47,448 and £104,224 per year (as of October 2010). For those with 10 to 19 years of experience, average salaries ranged between £65,362 and £147,159 per year (as of October 2010).
For those interested in a career as a sports physician in the US, popular cities for this occupation include Chicago, Orlando, San Fransisco, New York and Cleveland. The highest salaries were earned in the most popular city of Chicago, averaging between £85,967 and £100,117 per year (as of October 2010).
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