Sports medicine, also known as sports and fitness medicine, focuses on preventing, treating, and treating injuries that can occur in sports. This medicine helps people stay safe as they pursue their training goals.
Sports medicine specialists treat many injuries, including fractures, strains, and dislocations. They also treat degenerative diseases and chronic overuse injuries, such as tendonitis or hyper training syndrome.
Sports medicine combines general medical knowledge with the specific principles and techniques of sports science, exercise, physiology, orthopedics, and sports nutrition. A sports medicine team can include medical and nonmedical specialists like doctors and surgeons. Continue reading to learn about the field.
Sport Medicine Specialists
A sports medicine specialist looks at the medical, therapeutic, and functional aspects and works directly with athletes to improve their sporting performance. However, the “sports medicine specialist” title does not necessarily indicate that the specialist will be a doctor. It can be applied to any one of the many sports medical practices.
Sports medicine cannot be considered a medical specialty. It involves additional training in the medical aspects after the foundational certificate has been obtained.
There are many non-physician sports medicine professionals:
Physical Therapists: They aid people recovering from injuries.
Certified And Certified Athletic Trainers: These professionals provide programs that aid athletes in regaining strength, preventing injury, and maintaining fitness.
Nutritionists: The nutritionists help with weight management, nutrition, and physical training.
Sports Medicine Physicians
Sport medicine physicians are specialists in the diagnosis and treatment of sports-related injuries and illnesses. Many sports physician only treat athletes. However, many others will treat anyone who suffers from a sporting injury.
Most sports medicine physicians specialize in non-operative musculoskeletal conditions. Others are orthopedists who have chosen sports injury surgery as their main focus. A sports medicine physician will also be qualified to treat any other condition that may arise from muscle, bone, or joint injuries.
Sports medicine physicians manage conditions like injuries to the head, chronic, acute, and nutritional illnesses, injury prevention, nutrition and supplements, and “returning to play” decisions for sick or injured athletes.
Professionals in Sports
A special branch of psychology, sports psychology focuses on athletes’ mental and emotional needs and motivations. Professional sports teams may employ a full-time psychologist to help with emotional problems or prepare them for competition.
They can use different psychology tools and skills to support athletes during competition or rehabilitation from serious injuries. Sports psychologists may offer their patients psychotherapy, stress management, goal-setting, and other psychological services.
Specialists in Sports Science
Sports science, also known as exercise sciences, is the study of physiology, psychology, and anatomy as they relate to human movement.
As a discipline, exercise science primarily focuses on clinical research, including physiological responses to exercise, comparative effectiveness of exercise techniques, and the impact of performance-enhancing drugs and supplements.
Education and Training
There are many job opportunities in sports medicine. People who study sports medicine or science are often employed in a clinical, academic, service-oriented, or academic setting. Others are employed in sports organizations or work freelance.
Universities and colleges have started to add sports medicine to their curricula. It wasn’t easy to find a wide range of programs in the past. Today, there are numerous undergraduate and postgraduate degrees specifically for sports medicine, exercise science, or kinesiology.