Athletic Trainer Job Description: Top Duties and Qualifications

An Athletic Trainer, or Certified Athletic Trainer is a qualified professional who trains both Athletes and non-athletic people to help ensure minimum injuries and medical conditions during sports and physical activity. Their duties include preventing, diagnosing, treating and rehabilitating emergent, acute and chronic injuries and medical conditions. 


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Athletic Trainer duties and responsibilities 

The main duty of an Athletic Trainer is to ensure the safety and health of their Athletes. They work closely with Physicians to provide preventive guidance, clinical diagnosis and immediate medical attention to injuries. Their main duties and responsibilities also include: 

  • Implementing rehabilitation programmes for injured Athletes to help them get back into the field 
  • Developing injury prevention programmes and providing athletic training services 
  • Working with Coaches, Athletes and Physicians to evaluate the condition and fitness of players 
  • Creating nutrition plans for Athletes to help them maintain a proper diet 
  • Communicating with Coaches and family members to help Athletes set their health and fitness goals 
  • Referring Athletes to other specialised Doctors and medical staff for treatment 
  • Monitoring and assisting injured players to help them speed up their healing process 
  • Maintaining Athlete records relating to their health conditions, training, diet plans and fitness 


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What does an Athletic Trainer do? 

Athletic Trainers attend games and practices to prevent and train emergency and acute injuries. They evaluate the severity of injuries before providing medical care. Athletic Trainers can offer all types of basic emergency medical care, including CPR, applying bandages or even taping joints depending on the severity of the injury. 

Athletic Trainers also work with Athletes in the athletic training rooms to evaluate their progress, manage their rehabilitation and help them complete preventive therapy programmes. They can work in multiple settings, including schools, rehabilitation clinics, the military and performing arts programmes.  


Athletic Trainer skills and qualifications 

 Athletic Trainers should be social individuals who socialise with others easily. They should also have kind, generous, compassionate and empathetic personalities in order to assist others. A successful Athletic Trainer will have various prerequisite skills and qualifications that typically include: 

  • Excellent listening skills with the ability to understand the needs and desires of Athletes 
  • Good verbal and written communication skills 
  • Excellent decision-making and problem-solving skills and the ability to weigh options and choose the best one
  • Empathy and the ability to understand the challenges that Athletes face
  • A detail-oriented and active learning mindset
  • Ability to analyse athletes and use logic to determine their strengths and weaknesses 
  • Excellent interpersonal skills and a great passion for sports
  • Ability to maintain emotional control under stressful conditions and act quickly in cases of emergency 


Athletic Trainer experience requirements 

Athletic Trainers often require at least five years of demonstrable experience working with elite Athletes, individual Athletes and groups at the levels of NCAA Division 1 or Special Operation Forces (SOF) operators. Candidates with experience as Certified Athletic Trainers or contract employees in the British Army or Royal Marines can qualify for the position, provided the experience is recent. They must also have experience providing first aid, massages and physical therapy techniques and using equipment for patient care. 


Athletic Trainer education and experience requirements 

The minimum education requirement for an Athletic Trainer is a bachelor’s degree in athletic training, exercise science or another related field. Most employers prefer candidates with a master’s degree in an athletic-related field and a certification from the National Certification Agency for Athletic Training. Some employers may also require candidates to possess certifications from the National Strength and Conditioning Association. 


Athletic Trainer salary expectations 

According to Indeed Salaries, the average salary for an Athletic Trainer in the UK is £22.59 per hour. Individual salaries depend on factors like experience, education, location and company. 


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Athletic Trainer job description FAQs


What's the difference between an Athletic Trainer and a Personal Trainer?

Personal Trainers create one-on-one exercise and training programmes, while Athletic Trainers work with athletes to prevent or treat muscle and bone injuries. Athletic Trainers work under certified Physicians and are involved in choosing treatment and recovery methods. Personal Trainers show their clients how to do a routine or exercise and assist them as they continue learning. 


Who does an Athletic Trainer report to?

Athletic Trainers specialise in athletics and medical care. Therefore, they have to report to Coaches, Doctors and Physiotherapists. 


What makes a good Athletic Trainer job description?

A good Athletic Trainer job description is clear and concise. It focuses on specific Athletes or professions and only includes the responsibilities and skills required in that industry, such as military training. Good Athletic Trainer job descriptions also include information on how to apply for the position and shows credibility. 


What should you look for in an Athletic Trainer CV?

An Athletic Trainer CV must showcase work experience involving the implementation of therapeutic exercises and rehabilitation methodologies. It must also showcase the candidate’s skills and expertise in anatomy, exercise physiology, fitness strategies and nutrition.  

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