Case study

Graduate sports therapist/corrective exercise coach — Jameel Shah

Upon graduating in 2016, Jameel started working with the organisations where he carried out successful student placements

How did you become a sports therapist?

I studied for a BSc in Sports Therapy with a placement year at the University of East London. I did two placements - one with West Ham United FC Academy and the other with Movement Lifestyle.

They were very successful and I was fortunate enough to start working with both organisations after I graduated.

What's a typical day like?

I'm involved in so many things. That's one of the reasons why I love what I do.

On a typical day I start by seeing private clients on one-to-one basis for treatments or exercise-based sessions in the morning or early afternoon. I then finish with either covering a football match or training in the evening.

What do you enjoy about your job?

It sounds clich├ęd but I love all aspects of my job. I enjoy working in very diverse settings and interacting with people from all walks of life.

There is a great balance between working individually and working in a team environment, so you are continually learning and developing both on a personal and professional level.

What are the challenges?

Time is probably the most challenging aspect of my job, because you are always on the go. You really have to be clever with how you commit yourself and manage your time effectively.

How relevant is your degree?

Extremely relevant - I work in the same field that my degree was in and I don't think I would be doing what I am doing now, if I hadn't studied sports therapy.

How has your role developed?

I have seen a clear progression in my role since I graduated. I am now taking on more responsibilities in caring for clients or players.

My career ambitions are to further my development as a graduate sports therapist and continue to build on what I have learned so far, working with both professional sports teams and private clients.

What are the best things about working in this sector?

I find the flexibility of not having a set routine exciting. There is always something going on and you hardly ever get bored of what you do.

What advice would you give to others?

Make sure that you get some work experience and talk to others who are in the same field to develop an awareness of what the job actually entails and to ensure that this is the career for you.

There are so many different things you can do with a sports therapy degree and it's important to have a direction and an idea of what you would like to do once you have graduated.

There is a great support network out there for sports therapists, for example the Society of Sports Therapists provides you with a wealth of opportunities, support and guidance, regardless of the path you take after graduation. I am also part of the universities and colleges liaison group for the society, which caters for students while they are studying at their respective colleges or universities.

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