The History

Sports Medicine Australia Has A Long History

The history of Sports Medicine Australia started in 1963 when the Australian Sports Medicine Association (ASMA) was formed. Fifty-three years later, in 2016, the association merged with the Australian Federation of Sports Medicine (AFSM) to form Sports Medicine Australia. The SMA now serves as the uniform organisation for sports medicine in Australia.

The amalgamation of the two organisations came with some changes to sports medicine administration in the country. Developments along the years came with several changes being made to the organisation’s structure, activities, and membership.

The most notable change in membership composition is the inclusion of several disciplines of medical practitioners into the organisation. At the beginning, membership of the organisation was restricted to only medical doctors.

As the years progressed, several categories of health care providers were included, such as physiotherapists, orthopaedic surgeons, sports doctors, sports physicians, dentists, optometrists, psychologists, dieticians, physiologists, podiatrists, exercise scientists, sports scientists, nurses, chiropractors and academics.

The inclusion of these categories of professionals with varying degrees of roles and impact in sports medicine has allowed the organisation to become more comprehensive and their activities more impactful.

Major Historical Milestones

From 1963 till date, the association has experienced remarkable achievements that have made the history of the organisation rich and memorable. Here are some of those milestones.

In 1963, the Australian Sports Medicine Federation was established. The organisation was one of the two bodies in charge of sports medicine in Australia prior to the amalgamation that birthed Sports Medicine Australia (SMA).

In 1964, the Australian Journal of Sports Medicine was published for the first time. It is now called the Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport and is a source of reference in many issues regarding sports medicine, not just in Australia but across the world.

In 1965, the inaugural Australian Sports Medicine Federation Conference took place in Adelaide, South Australia. The conference has been sustained since then.

In 1974, Australian Sports Medicine Association hosted the FIMS Conference. The conference was held in Melbourne, Victoria.

In 1982, the organisation launched the Australian Sports Trainers Scheme. Along with the novel development, the organisation also published the Survey of Drug Use in Australian Sport, which was met with critical success.

In 1983, the remarkable Sports Health magazine was published for the first time. The magazine has grown to become one of the most notable authorities in sports medicine and health today.

In 1984, the association opened its national office in Canberra, Australian Capital Territory. This move further extended the activities of the organisation and improved its impact on sports medicine in Australia.

In 1986, the association hosted XXIII FIMS World Congress in Sports Medicine, Melbourne, Victoria.

In 1989, the Guidelines for Safety in Sport was published.

In 1999, the association hosted the 5th International Olympic Congress on Sports Sciences in Sydney, New South Wales.

In 2010, the Sports Medicine Australia’s national office became a virtual office with staff members only being in state offices.

In 2016, the SMA was formed as the uniform organisation for sports medicine in Australia.