Exercise & Sport Science Degree Lays the Foundation for Diverse Career Opportunities

August 20, 2021
WPU student tests Exercise and Sport Science equipment.

Health and fitness have taken center stage in the U.S. as we recently cheered on our Olympians participating in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, and we deal with the ongoing impacts of a global pandemic. While elite athletes and patients are often at opposite ends of the wellness spectrum, care and support of them arise from the same basic knowledge and understanding of human biology, physiology, epidemiology, physical fitness, and conditioning. Virtually all of which can be learned in pursuit of an exercise and sports science degree, or ESS degree.

People across the world have taken a stronger interest in their personal well-being, and physical and mental health has become a top priority. Now, along with the traditional jobs in medical technology, sports training, and coaching, the $1.5 trillion wellness market is ripe with job opportunities for ESS graduates.

If you are wondering what to do with an exercise and sports science degree, you can rest assured that there are a wide variety of exercise and sports science jobs available to you.

Exercise and Sports Science Job Opportunities

While an exercise and sports science degree sounds like it could pigeonhole graduates into a job specific to working with athletes, an ESS degree provides a solid foundation for a broad range of career opportunities. Anyone seeking a career in the health, fitness, exercise, sports, or medical industries may best be served by completing exercise and sports science courses towards receiving a bachelor’s degree. 

What is exercise and sports science? William Peace University prepares its ESS students to “address society’s growing concerns, from a holistic perspective, about wellness, fitness, injury prevention, rehabilitation, health, and social issues in sport.” What that means is exercise and sports science careers can be found in diverse settings. 

    • Corporate. Companies are learning that healthy employees are happy employees, and they are investing in programs and services geared towards increasing productivity, decreasing absenteeism, and reducing healthcare costs. Corporate wellness jobs could include employees who create, assess, and monitor health programs; fitness instructors to lead on-site classes; directors of corporate fitness centers; personal trainers; and, health and wellness consultants.
    • Commercial. Fitness apps, gadgets, services, and products have flooded the health and wellness market, and the companies that created them are in desperate need of employees. Companies like FitBit, Power Wellness, and Wellness Corporate Solutions have openings for jobs for exercise and sports science majors ranging from subject matter experts to instructors to product marketing specialists. 
  • Community. Whether community means a town, housing subdivision, health club, vacation destination, or a YMCA, the opportunities for jobs with an exercise and sports science degree are countless. Some options include director of youth camps/sports programs, sports and recreation director at a resort, aquatics director, health club manager, parks and recreation program manager, fitness instructor, and more.
    • Academics. Regardless of the grade level – elementary, secondary, or higher education – there is a need for campus recreation specialists, athletic administrators, PE instructors, and more. Coaching is another opportunity, and, with the U.S. government reporting the demand for coaches is expected to grow 12% over the next 10 years, it is a good option for recent ESS graduates.
    • Sports. For those looking for a career in the sports arena, jobs in the Raleigh area are plentiful. Career opportunities can be found in sports information, sports journalism, sports marketing, sports officiating, sports management, and strength and conditioning coaching. 
  • Medical. Most medical jobs for ESS graduates require additional certification or continuation into exercise sports science graduate programs. Job opportunities include sports psychologist, cardiac rehabilitation specialist, epidemiologist, and RN. An ESS major may also qualify students for a pre-med program.

This is by no means a complete list of job possibilities for exercise and sports science graduates, but it shows the wide range of career options available to those with an ESS degree from a top exercise and sports science program. With your degree, some enthusiasm, creativity, and research you are bound to find the right job.

Is Sports and Exercise Science a Good Degree for You?

An Exercise and Sport Science major at William Peace University is a versatile major that opens up a wide variety of career paths across the sports, health and wellness, and healthcare industries. Potential jobs with an exercise and sports science degree range from personal trainer to coach to health club manager, with even more opportunities, such as occupational therapist and sports psychologist, as well as a medical doctor, when combined with an advanced degree and/or certification.

The exercise and sport science major at WPU leaves graduates uniquely qualified to pursue their dream job. Along with traditional classroom education, the ESS curriculum boasts a hands-on lab offering state-of-the-art analytical fitness equipment, access to local professional sports teams including the Carolina Hurricanes and the NC Courage, and a host of exercise and sports science internship opportunities. 

To find out more about WPU’s ESS program, visit our exercise and sports science website or contact an admissions counselor today. We offer financial aid and scholarships for exercise and sport science majors as well as for many other programs.