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Sports Professional


Job Description

Sports Professionals are people who have exceptional talent in a particular sport. They are either paid to play as part of a team or organisation, or directly collect prize money as a result of their achievements in various competitions and leagues. 

Particularly successful retired or ex-sports professionals can go on to careers in coaching, team management or sports journalism, including Internet, Radio or TV punditry.    

Sports Professionals can compete in in a large range of sporting or athletic activities, though usually specialise in one - due to the time, training and resources involved in reaching the top level.  They will train regularly and maintain their general fitness, ensure that their diet is healthy and work with nutritionists, trainers and psychologists to ensure they can achieve their peak performance when competing in matches or competitions. Sports professionals will train everyday and give total commitment to their sports, this could be early mornings, evenings, weekends and sometimes outdoors in all weathers. Salaries can vary massively depending on how good you are.

Team sports such as football, rugby, cricket, hockey, basketball or an individual sports such as swimming, athletics, gymnastics, golf, horse racing - are to name but a few of the areas sports professionals are involved in.  Some of these industries are more lucrative than others, and one's skill level and public profile will affect earnings too.  Top Sports Professionals often take a lot of revenue from product endorsement.

Being a Professional Sports person is realistic for those who have exceptional talent and commitment, though only a small percentage of people ever reach this top tier.  You should objectively look at your level of ability and commitment in your favourite sports to determine whether this is a realistic goal for you.  If it is - go for it!  If not, why not think about all the other careers that are associated with the sport you love.  Lots of them are huge commercial industries that draw employees from many skill-sets.  What could you do in the industry?  

Entry Requirements

To become a professional sports person you will normally need to start at a young age by joining a local club or amateur organisation which will give you instruction and training. Often sports professional are spotted by talent scouts. Becoming a professional takes a lot of time and dedication and a willingness to spend evenings, weekends and free time rehearsing, training and practising.

Required Skills

You'll need:

  • an exceptional talent in your sport
  • dedication and commitment
  • a very high level of physical fitness
  • a competitive nature
  • the willingness to take advice and sometimes criticism from trainers and coaches
  • to be able to cope with pressure especially when you do not do as well as you had hoped
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