Choosing a career in the health and fitness industry is a wise choice for people that have a deep interest in the subject. It is also a wise career for people looking for a career in an industry that is growing and will be sustainable in the future. Health and fitness does just this – More and more people are conscious about living a healthy lifestyle in addition to an aging population that is increasingly turning to fitness to improve their quality of life.
Getting a Fitness and Exercise Degree
A fitness and exercise degree is the perfect education option for students that have a passion for fitness and sports. This is why you commonly see many student athletes purse a degree in this area.
Depending on the career path that you want to pursue, there are a number of college and university programs that you could register for to get your degree. Here are some of the most common degree programs
2 year College programs:
• • Exercise science
• Fitness and health promotion
• Fitness training
• Food and nutrition management
• Fitness leadership
• Fitness management
• Recreational therapy
• Sports conditioning
Many of these college programs also include your personal training certification, making these programs a good career choice if you want to pursue a career in personal training or another related field. Many also offer a co-op component to the program, allowing you to gain some practical experience the field while you go to school. Students also tend to get part time jobs at fitness centers, wellness clinics, and other sports and fitness related organizations to gain experience, network and get their foot in the door within the industry.
Undergraduate and graduate university programs:
• Philosophy of human performance
• Exercises science
• Athletic training and biomechanics
• Wellness management
• Sports management
• Sports coaching
• Clinical exercise physiology
• Health promotion and recreation
These programs are more specialized and lead to more niche careers within the fitness industry. They allow you to specialize in a specific area that interests you most and could also lead to teaching in the fitness industry. Many schools offer graduate programs in these areas, allowing you to gain expert knowledge in your field of study.
There are many more careers in this area then becoming a personal trainer. Here are some of the many career options that you can pursue with a fitness and exercise degree:
• Personal training
• Athletic trainer
• Sports marketing
• Journalist, blogger, writer
• Coaching and officiating
• Physical therapist
• Massage therapy
• Occupational therapy
• Sports management
• Program director for a fitness facility or wellness clinic
• Athletic director for a school, community center or sports organization
There is no shortage of directions that you can do in with a fitness related degree. However, depending on what career path you want to pursue, specialized education and certification may be required. But, like many other industries, continuous education and learning is an important part of growing your career and becoming an expert in your field.