How Do I Get a Sports Medicine Fellowship?

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  • Written By: C.B. Fox
  • Edited By: Susan Barwick
  • Last Modified Date: 13 September 2019
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Getting a sports medicine fellowship is not a complicated procedure, though it is a competitive. Doctors can apply during their last year of residency or internship, once they have met the prerequisites for the sports medicine specialty. These programs are offered in the United States and Canada and are open to doctors from around the world, though it is easier for a doctor to get a fellowship after having completed and American or Canadian residency program.

In order to prepare for a sports medicine fellowship, the prospective fellow needs to complete a number of years of hands-on training as orthopedic surgeons. Doctors who specialize in sports medicine treat sports related injuries, and though these injuries can occur anywhere on the body, the most frequent injuries are to the knees and shoulders. Surgeons who would like a sports medicine fellowship need to have experience in treating these types of conditions before they are admitted into the program.

Various universities and hospitals in the United States and Canada offer sports medicine fellowship programs. Doctors who have received their residency or internship training in other countries can still apply for fellowships in the United States and Canada, though they may need to take additional tests. The completion of an American or Canadian residency program and passing the subsequent medical board examination are prerequisites for a doctor from one of these countries to get a fellowship.


Applications for sports medicine fellowship programs are accepted at different times of the year at different institutions. It is important for a prospective fellow to carefully research all deadlines in order to make sure that the application materials are submitted on time. Most programs require a copy of the doctor’s transcripts, the scores from the medical board exams, letters of recommendation, and a personal statement.

Not all doctors who apply for a sports medicine fellowship will receive one. These programs are competitive and have only been available since the 1990s. As such, doctors who wish to be accepted to one of these programs will need to make their careers stand out from those of other applicants. Publishing academic papers in medical journals is one way to catch the eye of sports medicine programs. Sports medicine fellowship programs will also call candidates in for interviews, and careful preparation for these can also give a doctor a better chance of getting a fellowship.



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