Intended for healthcare professionals

Student Careers

Sports and exercise medicine

BMJ 2004; 329 doi: (Published 01 July 2004) Cite this as: BMJ 2004;329:0407282
  1. Bryan English, chairman1
  1. 1United Kingdom Association of Doctors in Sport

Are you a “go getter” looking for a new and energetic specialty? Bryan English explains how to get on in sports and exercise medicine

Sports and exercise medicine should be one of the United Kingdom's greatest investments for the future. With an escalating incidence of heart disease and obesity (especially in children) the potential impact of the specialty on public health is massive. Sadly, it is still not a fully recognised specialty in the United Kingdom, but exciting news is on the horizon.

Training today

There are already plenty of one year training programmes to suit both the specialist and the doctor with just an interest in sports and exercise medicine. Masters and diploma courses in sports medicine are available all over the United Kingdom. These range from a full time course consisting of 24 weeks' work spread over a year (the diploma/MSc course at the Royal London Hospital) to a diploma which requires no course and no training (the UK diploma taken in Edinburgh). The former is a genuine attempt to educate and train people in sports and exercise medicine and if you have the time it is the course that I would recommend. If you are after a certificate to demonstrate competence to be a touch line doctor then the examination in Edinburgh may be the one for you. However, as this is a “career focus” and not a “passing interest” article I do not recommend this route if you wish to specialise. Take some time out to learn in an educational environment. …

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