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HSS and Brooklyn Nets Lower Extremity Athlete Fellowship

The HSS and Brooklyn Nets Lower Extremity Athlete Fellowship is a clinically-based training program for physical therapists seeking to specialize in sports lower extremity physical therapy for the professional basketball player.

This non-accredited fellowship program's mission is to prepare each fellow for both the clinical and on court challenges experienced by National Basketball Association rehab and performance staff. This fellowship will accelerate professional development through the unique educational experiences which include mentoring, didactic curriculum, manual skills labs, rehab progressions, surgical observation as well as on and off court player management. These experiences will allow each fellow to provide superior patient care and enhanced patient outcomes. This fellowship is designed to prepare each candidate with the tools and training required to work in professional basketball and be leaders in the field of sports physical therapy.

Time Commitment and Salary

The HSS and Brooklyn Nets Lower Extremity Athlete Fellowship is a full-time position, nine months in duration. The fellow is expected to work 40-45 hours/week. Approximately 30% of their time is spent in educational experiences and 70% providing supervised care. A salary and benefits package is provided.

Important Dates

  • The fellowship runs from April 2024 – April 2025
  • The application deadline is February 15, 2024

Admission Requirements

Minimum Requirements

  • US citizenship
  • Graduation from an accredited physical therapy program
  • Malpractice insurance (minimum $1 mil per occurrence/$3 mil aggregate)
  • Current ATC designation
  • Current NY State Physical Therapy license in good standing


  • Possess ABPTS Sports or Orthopedic board certification or completion of prior ABPTFRE accredited sports physical residency

How to Apply

Application packet materials should be submitted to Snay Patel, PT, MPT, SCS, Fellowship Director, via email at patelsn@hss.edu

Your application packet will need to include:

  • Your resume/curriculum vitae, including academic and clinical education, continuing education, clinical and other relevant experience
  • A brief summary (400-800 words) of your relevant clinical experiences thus far, with an emphasis on sports rehabilitation and sports medicine exposures
  • A short essay (one page) explaining your reasons for applying for the fellowship, your goals and why you consider yourself to be a good candidate
  • Two letters of professional reference

Admissions Process

Applications are evaluated by the Lower Extremity Athlete Fellowship Director and faculty based on:

  • Admission criteria listed above
  • Academic and clinical education, continuing education, and other relevant experience
  • Clinical experience in sports medicine/rehabilitation
  • Verbal and written communication skills
  • Demonstration of leadership, professionalism, and commitment

All applicants are screened prior to interview selection and admission into the fellowship program. The Fellowship Director and faculty select the top candidates each year based on the criteria described above. In accordance with hospital policy, all employment-related decisions, including program recruitment, admission, retention, and dismissal, are made without regard to race, creed, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression, national origin, marital status, age (18 or older), disability, veteran status, citizenship status, or any other protected characteristic as established by law.


The curriculum of the HSS and Brooklyn Nets Lower Extremity Athlete Fellowship is designed to provide each candidate with a comprehensive program consisting of didactic and clinical experiences, with emphasis on lower extremity injuries. The fellow will receive guidance and mentoring from the sports rehab and performance staff at Hospital for Special Surgery and the Brooklyn Nets basketball staff. Curriculum consists of literature reviews, readings, didactic modules which cover a variety of lower-extremity focused topics, lab sessions focusing on the evaluation and treatment of athletes with lower extremity pathology, case reviews, teaching opportunities as well as physician clinic and surgery observation.

The fellowship program will require participants to complete a minimum of 1,000 total program hours which includes 100 educational hours and 850 patient-care clinical hours inclusive of 100 hours of 1:1 mentoring throughout the program. Throughout the program each fellow will have individualized guidance on current best practices, patient care and evidence-based practice.

HSS Sports Rehabilitation and Performance West Side will be the clinical site for this fellowship. The fellow will travel to Long Island, NY in October where they will spend the remainder of their fellowship with the Long Island Nets under the guidance of their staff of rehabilitation specialists.

Program Goals

  • Provide fellows with a comprehensive program including didactic, clinical and observational experiences in the specialty of sports physical therapy for the professional basketball player.
  • Produce highly trained clinicians who understand the unique demands of the professional basketball player in a professional setting.
  • Develop clinicians who are competent in treatment and progression of basic and complex injuries in the professional basketball player.
  • Develop clinicians who exhibit the highest level of professionalism and who are willing to give back to the field as researchers, educators, leaders and mentors.
  • Train the clinician to manage key injury cases from acute injury to return to play.

Contact for additional information

Snay Patel, PT, MPT, SCS, Fellowship Director at patelsn@hss.edu.