Uncovering the Potential of a Sports Medicine Salary
There are many kinds of positions within the sports medicine field with a wide disparity among the sports medicine salary offerings.
Let us examine a few of your options to enter the Sports Medicine field.
A sports medicine career offers a great diversity of options with tremendous side benefits.
How many careers can you think of where you are offered the opportunity to help people improve their bodies, work to improve their lives and at the same time be able to develop a deeper understanding of your own body?
Sports medicine colleges, which is the right one for you to choose from? You’ll also learn about the importance of choosing the right sports medicine major, that will provide you flexibility in your career choices.
Sports Medicine Careers and Median Sports Medicine Salary in the USA
Following is a list of a few potential careers for you to consider. These positions are all recognized by the American College of Sports Medicine.
- Fitness Specialist – $30,482
- Personal Trainer – $32,614
- Athletic Trainer – $39,517
- Clinical Exercise Specialist – $39,677
- Exercise Physiologist – $40,429
- Health/Wellness Coordinator – $41,266
- Fitness Club Manager – $45,958
- Physician – Sports Medicine – $240,648
Obviously this list leaves out a wide variety of careers within sports medicine. The sports medicine salaries listed above vary wildly depending on states, your experience, education, and organizations. A professional sports team is likely to pay their athletic trainer a much higher salary than the trainer in a local fitness club.
National Academy of Sports Medicine
As an example in the diversity of wages within sports medicine, let us take a look at some state by state breakdowns. The following list is a median sports medicine salary by states by employees who have attained an American College of Sports Medicine certification:
- Pennsylvania – $31,758
- Florida – $40,000
- Illinois – $40,563
- Colorado – $42,881
- Texas – $44,102
- California – $44,548
- New York – $54,682
Choosing where to use your certification and skills plays a major role in the level of your sports medicine salary. It is interesting the lowest state in our list and the highest state share a border with a large amount of cross border commuting. Salaries within sports medicine increase in large metropolitan areas and can be significantly lower in small towns located in rural areas.
Doing the Time to Increase Your Pay
As within many other career choices experience pays. Having just earned your degree or certification will leave you on the lowest tier of wages, but with just a bit of persistence you can find your salary rapidly climbing, often outpacing other industries.
Here is how experience within your field will affect your salary:
Years of Experience to Median Sports Medicine Salary
- Less than 1 year experience – $34,833
- 1-4 years experience - $34,366
- 5-9 years experience – $43,610
- 10-19 years experience – $49,915
- 20 years plus of experience – $50,421
The one oddity in this survey is the slight decrease in salary in the 1 to 4 years experience. This could easily be attributed to many people moving into new careers no longer defined as sports medicine.
Added Skills Which Can Enhance Your Earning Potential
In any industry, including Sports Medicine, having a specialty or added skills increases your earning potential. A few of the skills which can add to your
sports medicine salary include specializing in:
- Health and Wellness
- Program Management
- Sports Nutrition
- Workplace Health
If you are in the process of choosing your career directions explore the possibilities to add one of these skill sets. These slightly more specialized skills will give you stronger negotiating power for increased wages and an advantage over other applicants. You can even consider combining skills to increase your potential further.
The pinnacle of sports medicine is becoming a physician. As you can see in our first list above a sports medicine doctors’ salary far eclipses any other area of study.
Their years of study, expertise, and knowledge are well rewarded. You may have no desire to spend the years of college, medical school, and internship required to be a sports medicine physician.
It is good to know there is a variety of other choices which allow you to earn a good salary doing what you love.
In the final evaluation your sports medicine income will be very dependent on your level of knowledge and expertise. By becoming certified and continuing to expand your skills you will see your sport medicine salary continue to climb. The level of your sports medicine salary will be largely determined by your own decisions.