Best Degrees to Pursue for Careers in Fitness

By John Nassivera

Being in shape requires a great deal of discipline and knowledge, as it takes plenty of research into exercise routines and diets to obtain the physique that we dream of seeing in the mirror, as well as extending our lifespan as long as possible. If you’re a fitness fanatic and want to make a living helping others get into shape, then you’ll be happy to know that there are degrees available to make that happen.

The options for school programs allow you to take on a variety of roles, with some focusing on the medical side of fitness and others having you directly help people become stronger and healthier. Here are the best degrees to pursue for careers in fitness.

Athletic Training

You may be among those who enjoy being active on a regular basis and want to work with people who know the benefits of this lifestyle. In this case, we recommend getting a degree in athletic training, which involves getting aspiring and professional athletes into the shape they need to perform. This involves coming up with regiments that are safe and designed to keep athletes in shape to perform for as long as possible.

If your school doesn’t have this option listed among its accredited online and continuing education degree programs, then we advise finding one that does. Because this degree allows you to work with young and more seasoned professionals, you’ll have the chance to work for some of the biggest sports organizations, which means more money.

Nutrition & Dietetics

Part of staying healthy is knowing what to eat, which can have more of an affect on your ability to lose weight than lifting dumbbells and sprinting on treadmills five days a week. A degree in nutrition and dietetics gives you the ability to figure out the benefits of different food groups and how they show be consumed so that people can get the most of their benefits and be affected by their downsides as little as possible.

This option gives you the chance to work with people in different situations, from athletes looking to improve their performance to the average joe looking to lose a few pounds for the spring or summer. You’ll also get to work in a variety of gyms and healthcare centers, which expands your options for making a living.


Part of being able to perform, whether you’re an athlete, bodybuilder or someone just looking to feel good and look good in the mirror, is knowing how to perform exercises. This knowledge is important if you want to become a trainer down the road, so you’ll need a degree in kinesiology so that your trainees and clients know the techniques to their workouts so that they don’t get hurt and cut down the time they can exercise.

Kinesiology involves studying a variety of courses so that you get the full scope of this topic, including human anatomy, biomechanics and physiology. You’ll need to understand how certain workouts have short-term and long-term effects on people, which can vary based on their age and the level they are training at.

Exercise Science

Another option that allows you to work with a large range of people is a degree in exercise science. With this degree, you’ll be able to do a combination of training and education for people who range from college students training to join professional leagues to senior citizens who are trying to get into better shape and avoid severe health issues that they are likely to experience.

Those who go with this option will have a variety of avenues for careers, such as exercise instructors, coaches, team managers and health club facility directors. You will be tasked with giving people direct assistance with exercises so that they perform them correctly and having sit-downs with them about their current meal plans and what needs to change to reach their goals.

Health Fitness Specialist

When it comes to understanding different aspects of health and combining them to improve performance, degrees in health fitness specialist fits the bill better than most. With this degree, you’ll need to understand how biomechanics, nutrition, physiology and fitness analysis work together to help people achieve their goals, whether it’s to increase performance for a sport and avoid severe health issues.

It’s important to find a school that offers this degree on different levels, including Associate’s, Bachelor’s and Master’s. This will allow you obtain more knowledge, which will help you get a better job in the fitness world. Some courses involve taking internships so that you can have a more-hands on experience in this area, which will help you do a better job when you enter the working world.

Keep these options in mind so that you can help people use fitness to have a better life.

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