Athletic Trainer vs. Physical Therapist

In students these days, two popular career potentials are athletic trainers and physical therapists.  Through research, or compare and contrasting the two occupations a person can find the career that best suits them. One of the major differences between these two professions is their work conditions and the type of people they work with. Athletic trainers mostly work with athletes when the injury occurs whereas physical therapists work with patients after the injury or condition.  Here is a more detailed look into the comparison between these two professions:

Athletic Trainer:

These professionals help prevent injuries for all sorts of people, varying from professional athletes to industrial workers. To become a certified athletic trainer one must complete four years of college at an accredited athletic training school and then obtain NATA certification or the National Athletic Trainers Association's certification. The salaries of athletic trainers vary according to job setting and depend on experience and job responsibilities.  Median annual earnings of wage-and-salary athletic trainers were $36,560 in May 2006. The middle 50 percent earned between $28,920 and $45,690. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $21,940, while the top 10 percent earned more than $57,580. Athletic training is practiced by athletic trainers, health care professionals who collaborate with physicians to optimize activity and participation of patients and clients. Athletic trainers work in physician offices as physician extenders. They also work in rural and urban hospitals, hospital emergency rooms, urgent and ambulatory care centers, military hospitals, physical therapy clinics, secondary schools, colleges/universities, youth leagues, commercial settings and professional sports teams. Services rendered by the athletic trainer take place in a wide variety of settings and venues, including actual athletic training facilities, primary schools, universities, inpatient and outpatient physical rehabilitation clinics, hospitals, physician offices, community centers, workplaces, and even the military. Emerging settings for athletic training include surgical fellowship opportunities

Physical therapists:

The educational training required by physical therapists is those of graduating from a physical therapist educational program with a master's or doctoral degree. Included in the course are biology, chemistry, and physics, as well as specialized courses such as biomechanics, neuroanatomy, human growth and development, manifestations of disease, examination techniques, and therapeutic procedures. Physical therapists earnings, in May 2006 were $66,200, with the middle 50 percent earning between $55,030 and $78,080, the lowest 10 percent earning less than $46,510, and the highest 10 percent earning more than $94,810. Some jurisdictions allow physical therapists to employ technicians or aides to perform designated routine tasks related to physical therapy under the direct supervision of a physical therapist. Some jurisdictions require physical therapy technicians or aides to be certified, and education and certification requirements vary among jurisdictions. Physical therapists can be involved in the care of athletes from recreational to professional and Olympians. This area of practice includes athletic injury management, including acute care, treatment and rehabilitation, prevention, and education. Physical therapists are also active in sports medicine programs. Physical therapists who work for professional sport teams often have this specialized certification.