While millions of people in the United States love sports and fitness, there is sometimes a misconception that this field cannot be a career path. The truth is that you can build an incredibly fulfilling and lucrative career in fitness jobs, with the number of positions increasing significantly between 2010 and 2020. Here are eight fitness jobs that allow you to pay your bills while living your passion.
- Fitness Floor Attendant
Sports Services - Southeast Region
- Fitness Center Monitor Position
Sports Services - Northeast Region
- Tai Chi Group Fitness Instructor
Health/Fitness/Rec. - Northeast Region
- Part-time Yoga Group Fitness Instructor, Department of Campus Recreation
Health/Fitness/Rec. - Southeast Region
Top 8 Fitness Jobs
1. Fitness Journalist
Do you excel at writing and have a strong interest in fitness? You may find it fulfilling to become a reporter on the topic. As a fitness journalist, you would create feature stories and workout articles based on your field expertise. You would also need a thorough understanding of workouts, fitness equipment, and trends. A bachelor’s degree in journalism will also be necessary for some positions.
2. Athletic Trainer
Your mission as an athletic trainer is to maintain the health of athletes. While some trainers operate independently, they are often part of a sports team’s staff (usually pro or college, but sometimes high school). These health and fitness jobs focus on the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of athlete injuries.
Depending on the state you live in, you will probably have to pass a National Strength and Conditioning Association exam. You will also likely need at least one certification or license, in addition to a bachelor’s degree, for these fitness careers.
3. Assistant Coach, Strength and Conditioning
These jobs in fitness involve developing strength and conditioning programs for athletes. These programs are composed of drills and exercises to enhance speed, agility, flexibility, strength, and other core athletic characteristics. Your goal is to decrease the prevalence of injuries.
- Coaching Instructor - Head Coach, Track Adjunct Lecture
Health/Fitness/Rec. - West Region
- DII Volleyball Coaching Assistant - NCAA
Sports Services - Central Region
- Coaching Instructor - Head Coach, Track Adjunct Lecture - Continuous
Health/Fitness/Rec. - West Region
- Assistant Coaching Position: Men's Lacrosse
College Coaching - Southeast Region
4. Sports Physical Therapist
Are you looking for fitness jobs with strong opportunity and stability? These roles are becoming much more common as the older population grows in the United States (resulting in higher numbers of exercise injuries). Your state of residence will determine some of the requirements you need for these roles. Athletic trainers have to pass a national licensing examination administered by your state. To become a sports PT, you may require certain board certifications as well. These requirements should follow the completion of bachelor’s and Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) degrees, as well as a sports certification with the American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties (ABPTS)
5. Sports Physical Therapist Assistant
Great fitness jobs do not always require four-year degrees. This entry-level position is a more accessible option for anyone wanting to get their career going — even if they eventually intend to get the additional education required for physical therapist roles. To become a sports PTA, you need to earn an associate’s degree, along with passing a state-issued exam and getting licensed. With training to assist in assessment, treatment, and recovery programs, these individuals work under the physical therapist’s direction.
Nutritionists are increasingly being hired to support professional and college teams. They may also be employed by schools, nursing homes, hospitals, resorts, and spas. You will need a license in most states, which you can acquire once you have earned a bachelor’s degree. This position requires knowledge of protein, fats, and carbohydrates so you can monitor consumption and guide athletes (or whomever you serve) toward healthy food choices. You also help your clients by crafting dietary plans for them.
7. Personal Trainer
You will need at least one specialized certification — such as ACE training, AED, or CPR — for this role. Typically personal training jobs require a bachelor’s degree, although an associate’s degree can land some positions. There has been a substantial increase in health and fitness jobs in recent years, with a 24 percent rise over the past decade (per the Bureau of Labor Statistics). That figure is not as fast as the sports PT growth rate of 39 percent, but it is impressive.
8. Exercise Physiologist
As with sports physical therapists and personal trainers, these roles have increased dramatically over the last ten years: 20 to 28 percent. You may need to get a certification from the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) or American Society of Exercise Physiologists (ASEP). To get hired for one of these fitness jobs, you will need a bachelor’s degree in kinesiology or exercise science. You can land clinical and research roles with a master’s degree.
Dream Fitness Careers
Do you love sports and fitness? Any of the above jobs could be a great way for you to develop a meaningful career – but how do you find openings and get hired? At Jobs In Sports, we offer all the tools, statistics, and job information you need to land your dream sports job. Join today for free!