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Seven Things You Can Do With an Online Degree In Sports and Fitness Management

Dec 26, 2008 Jennifer Williamson, Distance Columnist | 0 Comments

Sports and fitness management online degrees combine fitness and business to give graduates a solid platform for building a lifelong career out of their love of sports.  Sports and fitness management programs often combine classes in management, finance, ethics, and business with a sound grounding in fitness and wellness principles. Following is an overview of a few common careers this degree will prepare you for.

Run a gym

Gym managers have a hand in all the day-to-day operations of a gym facility, including hiring, managing, training and scheduling staff; signing up new members and implementing marketing initiatives to generate revenue; buying and maintaining equipment; and designing classes and features to attract and retain members.  A gym owner can open a franchise or a new gym facility, and there’s room for plenty of profit for an owner with sound business skills and an understanding of the market.

See Also: Online Sports and Fitness Management Degrees

Become a professional coach


Become A Camp Counselor with a sports and fitness management degree

Getting your degree in sports and fitness management opens up many career possibilities. One opportunity might involve working with kids at a summer camp.




Professional coaches don’t just work at the national level. They also work with semi-professional teams, summer camps, and schools.  Many schools and camps hire coaches part-time, but you can become a full-time coach at a larger school or university.  Many professional coaches start off as assistant coaches after years of experience as a player.  Depending on where you work, you could earn as little as $20,000 per year or as much as $40,850—and some professional coaches at larger schools earn much more.

Work in a sporting goods store

There are a variety of positions within sporting goods stores that draw on sports knowledge and business acumen.  Floor salespeople work directly with customers, making recommendations and sometimes earning commissions.  Managers oversee employees and ensure profitable sales in their departments, sometimes designing pricing and sales policies as well as motivational programs for the sales staff.  As the owner of your own sporting goods store, you’d be responsible for the survival of your store—from merchandising and pricing to marketing and hiring.

See Also: Online Sports Courses

Run a community recreation center or sports facility

As a community recreation center employee, you may be responsible for designing and promoting activities, securing contracts and funding, running activities, hiring staff, managing facilities, and other tasks depending on your job description.  Some recreation centers and sports facilities are run by nonprofits, while others are funded by state or local governments. 

Become a camp director

Camp directors are responsible for planning camp activities, hiring counselors, managing facilities, marketing the camp, and ethical and legal issues that relate to day and overnight camps.  Most camps are seasonal, but depending on the climate in your area and whether you run a program marketed to children or adults, you may be able to find year-round employment or open a camp that caters to customers year-round.

Become a gym teacher

Many people who aspire to coaching find fulfilling careers in education. Gym teachers work in public and private schools with kids of all ages, from kindergartners to teenagers.  This is usually a full-time position, and some gym teachers may take on coaching and health education duties as well.  In most school districts, aspiring gym teachers will have to become licensed to teach online in public schools.

Run a spa

Health spas often include many recreational facilities, including tennis courts, swimming pools, gyms, and golf courses.  They also include professional massage, meditation, beauty treatments, medical consultations, and more—depending on the type of spa.  You can work for a spa chain, a luxury resort, a health or medical spa, and more—there are numerous possibilities to suit diverse interests.  Become a spa manager or run your own spa, and you’ll have day-to-day control over health and fitness-related activities and facilities and programs as well as the spa’s business operations.

An online degree in sports and fitness management can take you in many different directions, depending on your interests.  For those with a strong interest in hands-on sports participation, a teaching or gym education career may be a perfect fit.  Those with an entrepreneurial mindset may love to own or manage their own gym, sporting goods store, or spa.  And people who love directing and designing activities and managing sports facilities may find fulfillment in a directorial position at a camp or community recreation center.  A degree in sports and fitness management will help you combine sports and business knowledge to find a career that works for you.


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