Sports salaries have been on a steady rise for some time now. Athletes across every major sport are making millions of dollars per year, and in some cases, billions of dollars over the course of their careers. People who play sports at the highest level tend to gravitate towards just a few different types of sports – football, basketball, baseball, soccer, hockey, boxing, golf, tennis and auto racing. Athletes make money through playing their sport professionally (in either the National Football League (NFL), the American (MLB), the National Basketball Association (NBA) or other league(s)), or by endorsing products like shoes or cereal.
While sports consumption in America is at an all-time high, with more people playing or watching sports than ever before, it only makes sense that salaries would increase. More people are consuming sports which means more money for leagues from companies who want to get their product out there through advertising. If a company spends one million dollars on advertising during a football game and 20 million people watch that game, those 20 million people are more likely to buy products endorsed by the players they see on TV.
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Athlete (Football, Baseball, Soccer, etc.) – $31 Million Per Year
Football is the most popular sport in America, and also the sport which commands the highest salaries for athletes. So it’s no coincidence that a football player tops our list of sports careers with the best salaries. The average salary of a NFL player is $1.9 million per year, while players in some positions can make much more – according to Forbes , the best-paid NFL position is that of the Quarterback, which can earn $5 million per year. The average salary for players in Major League Baseball (MLB) was $3.2 million per year as of 2011 – according to ESPN , the league minimum is now $414,000. This means that if you become an MLB player, you will be one of the highest paid athletes no matter how low your position is on the team. The average salary for a professional soccer player in 2012 was $1.9 million – according to Forbes . However, this fluctuates based off where players are playing and what league they’re playing in; MLS (Major League Soccer) salaries tend to be the lowest, while those playing in European leagues can make much more.
What does it take to have a successful career in sports and earn a high salary?
Talent alone isn’t enough to make it in any of these sports; you need dedication and a ton of training. Successful athletes play their sport every day, either at practice with their team or by themselves. They also spend hours upon hours training – practicing moves (like free throws for basketball or penalty kicks for soccer), running sprints or lifting weights. Most athletes at the professional level focus on one sport only; it’s extremely rare to see someone who plays two sports professionally.
What are the necessary skills and attributes for a successful sports career?
The most important skill for any athlete is hand-eye coordination, which allows them to catch or throw a ball quickly and accurately. Athletes should also be quick on their feet since the game only stops when someone catches the ball, so they should always be prepared to move quickly. While it’s not necessary, playing multiple sports as a child helps athletes improve their hand-eye coordination and quickness, because they practice these skills in a variety of sports.
The best way to learn about the requirements for a career in sports is through experiential learning
Try your hand at different types of sports – you can find many youth programs and after school activities that will allow you to learn the basics of football, baseball, soccer or other sports.