Intended for healthcare professionals


Chris Oliver: from orthopaedic surgeon to fitness professor

BMJ 2018; 361 doi: (Published 31 May 2018) Cite this as: BMJ 2018;361:k1768
  1. Adrian O’Dowd
  1. BMJ Careers

The retired trauma orthopaedic surgeon and honorary professor of physical activity for health recommends grabbing every opportunity that comes your way

Dared into medicine

As a young man, I was doing sprint and kayaking at national level and everyone said I was going to go to the Olympics. But my mother said you can’t make a career out of kayaking, and she dared me to be a doctor. It was all unexpected and not terribly well planned.

Choosing the right specialty

I thought I’d do surgery because of the practical aspect of repairing things. I realised I didn’t want to do bowel or cancer surgery. Then I did neurosurgery and I enjoyed that, but there was so much death and paralysis. I decided I wanted to do orthopaedics because you can put things back together and fix things, and I ended up doing orthopaedic trauma.

Moving around

During my elective period I went to Cebu in the Philippines to learn about tropical diseases, then to …

View Full Text