What Can You Do With An Exercise Science Degree?

bachelors degree in exercise science and kinesiology
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Exercise science is the study of science behind human body movement. Most people who earn degrees in exercise science go on to work in rehabilitation centers and exercise gyms among other businesses that involve physical fitness and wellness. How do you get a degree in exercise science? What can you do with a degree in exercise science? These answers and more can be found in the rest of this article.

Areas of Study in Exercise Science

What is exercise science? As mentioned above, it focuses on the movement of the human body. Another term it often goes by is kinesiology. It can be applied to everyday workouts and sports and even dancing as well as daily dieting habits. This subject can help you better understand how exercise and proper nutrient intake can keep the body healthy.

Medical aspects – focuses on medications and treatments to assist in the healing of physical injuries

Physical fitness – study of living healthy, including learning about nutritional diets, how physical activity’s impact on your body, and other practices to improve or stabilize the health of the human body

Exercise psychology – study of how psychological elements can effect the human body and its functioning abilities

How to Get Your Exercise Science Degree

Many colleges and universities exist where you can earn degrees in different kinds of health and nutrition, including a concentration in exercise science. Just a few of those colleges and a few of their unique qualities can be found here. Don’t forget: it is wise to apply to at least three higher learning facilities in order to give yourself options. You never know if you’ll be accepted if you don’t apply!

William Marsh Rice University (aka Rice University) has a fantastic kinesiology department that offers a program in sports medicine and a program in health sciences. Founded in 1912, this private university is located in Houston, TX, and sits on 295 acres of land. Its health sciences program focuses on the promotion of health and the prevention of disease. The university’s sports medicine program is the only program on campus that offers courses that cover detailed human anatomy and physiology while including nutrition, exercise physiology, and more.

Columbia University in the City of New York, more commonly known as Columbia University, is rated number 1 for exercise science by FindTheBest.com. This private Ivy League research university’s biobehavioral sciences department has an entire movement science and education program for students who have already received their bachelor degrees. Graduate students have the opportunities to earn a Master of Education in Curriculum and Teaching in Physical Education, a PhD in Kinesiology, and many more.

The United States Military Academy of West Point, NY, also has an outstanding program in kinesiology and exercise science. The department of physical education offers a major in kinesiology in which students learn about exercise psychology, sports medicine, sports nutrition, and more. With classes usually containing between 12 and 18 cadets, students are sure to get the most out of their education. In addition, most of the faculty members are military personnel, and all faculty members possess a masters degree in related fields. The student-faculty ratio is approximately 8:1.

Exercise Science and Kinesiology Careers

Exercise science offers many career paths that require physical participation or knowledge of physical fitness, as the subject focuses on physical health and body movement. You will find a few of those career paths listed here.

Entry Level Careers in Exercise Science and Kinesiology

With a bachelors degree in exercise science, you should have no trouble making your way into the workforce. Just a few entry level career options are described here.

Fitness and Nutrition Consultant

exercise science degree
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Fitness and nutrition consultants blend physical fitness and proper dieting together to create health programs for individual clients. Clients can be at any physical fitness level. Fitness and nutrition consultants are willing to help anyone who asks. They are very personable and enjoy helping individuals find their ways back to healthy lifestyles in order to live longer, happier lives.

Fitness and nutrition consultants can make around $52,000 or more each year with experience. Without much experience, people in the same field can make around $34,000.

Health Educator

Health educators often work in medical institutions where they give patients more information on their diagnosis as well as treatment methods. In addition, they often work with other medical staff members and teach them proper communication techniques for conversing with patients. For this reason, necessary qualities of a health educator include excellent communication skills, the ability to provide small groups with instructions, and compassion for patients. (For more duties of health educators, click here.)

The most common salary for a health educator is around $47,000 a year.

Advanced Careers in Exercise Science and Kinesiology

If you further your education or spend enough time in the field to gain exceptional experience, you may go on to further your career opportunities in exercise science. Just a few options available to you are provided here.

Physical Therapist

A physical therapist’s job is to assist patients in getting back on their feet…sometimes even literally. They help patients who have been physically injured regain the health and strength needed to carry out day-to-day activities. They show compassion and dedication to their patients in helping them recover as best and as quickly as possible. The need for physical therapists is only projected to grow stronger within the next few years, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. In order to become a physical therapist, you are required to obtain a Doctor of Physical Therapy, or a DPT, degree.

Physical therapists are known to make around $78,000 annually, depending on experience and business flow.

Medical Doctor (M.D.)

A very common path for exercise science and kinesiology students to take is that to become a medical doctor, also known as a primary care physician. If you are willing to dedicate the extended amount of time it takes to complete your education for this field even after obtaining your bachelors degree, it has a very reasonable return on investment. Medical doctors are responsible for annual checkups, or physicals, and diagnosing and treating sick patients.

Medical doctors can expect roundabout earnings of $175,000 a year.

Companies that Hire Individuals with Degrees in Exercise Science

Have you found yourself wondering, “What can I do with my degree in exercise science?” There are many companies around the world that regularly hire people with exercise science and kinesiology degrees, including but not limited to physical therapy offices, pediatric offices, and fitness centers. Just a few are listed below.

Planet Fitness – fitness centers across the United States; hires personal trainers, fitness experts, club management

ATI Physical Therapy – founded in 1996 with various locations in the eastern region of the United States; began as a center for worker’s compensation patients; hires physical therapists, athletic trainers, etc.

American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) – originated in 1929 in Portland, OR; organization with 62,000 pediatrics specialists; hires researchers, pediatrics specialists, etc.

Holy Cross Hospital – founded in 1963 and located in Silver Spring, MD; hires community health workers, case managers, pharmacy technicians, physician coaches, clinical nurses, etc.

Chinese Progressive Association – founded in 1977 and located in Chinatown, NY; non-profit community-based organization advocating social and economic justice for Chinese Americans; accepts community organizers, community activists and the like

Exercise science and kinesiology bachelor degrees and more can get you all sorts of jobs. Pick a higher education institution and go for the gold. Always apply to at least three institutions, and never be afraid to explore opportunities in physical fitness, nutrition education, and more.

Author: Rose Boettinger

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