Most sports now recognise sports science as an integral part of their development and success. Most athletes consider the application of sports science as part of everyday training and competition. In relation to exercise science, many hospitals, Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) and National Health Service (NHS) trusts are now appointing specialists with exercise qualifications to work in areas such as cardiac rehabilitation and health promotion.
However, despite the increasing number of job opportunities in sport and exercise science, the number of sport and exercise science graduates is also growing, making competition for jobs intense. Students should therefore take every opportunity to gain experience and build networks whilst at university and think about how to develop your knowledge and skills beyond what you learn on your course.
Here are a few ideas about how you can do this:
Keep up-to-date with current issues: It is important to recognise that in order to further your career you will have to take responsibility for your own professional development. Being a part of a professional body can help you keep up-to-date with news, upcoming events and the latest research in the sport and exercise science sector and ensure you are kept aware of opportunities to gain experience via internships, research projects or presenting your research at a conference.
Remember that new research in sport and exercise science is constantly being published; being aware of the latest developments is one way to show your knowledge and passion for your subject area – just make sure you are reading credible sources as there is a lot of misinformation on the Internet and in the media.
Gain additional qualifications: Extra qualifications may be essential for you to progress in your chosen career – or may simply help you stand out in a crowded job market. Graduates who progress most quickly in their careers are often those who have sought to gain additional experience and qualifications. Employers will see this positively in terms of your willingness to learn and as evidence of commitment to your chosen career.
Undertaking further courses following your degree will make you more marketable and hopefully help you move up the career ladder. This, in turn, will generally mean your earning power increases accordingly. Qualifications might include coaching, first aid, gym instructing or safeguarding training.
BASES Accreditation is an industry-standard qualification for practicing sport and exercise scientists that will open many doors to a successful career in sport and exercise science.
The most common route to Accreditation is via the BASES Supervised Experience programme, which is open to anyone who has completed an undergraduate degree in sport and exercise science. BASES also offers specialist accreditations for practitioners working in high performance sport (BASES High Performance Sport Accreditation) or with clinical populations (BASES Certified Exercise Practitioner).
Most of our career resources for students and early-career professionals can be found in the BASES Members' Area. Here you will find general and discipline-specific content including webinars, podcasts, videos, e-magazines, articles and more.
Below, we have compiled some career resources that are freely available on the web, as well as links to other websites and resources that you may find useful.
EIS Careers Podcast
The English Institute of Sport have produced this ‘special edition’ podcast which looks at Sport Science Careers in High Performance Sport. It is presented by Matt Slater and features studio discussion with the former EIS Director of Sport Science and Technical Development, Dr Steve Ingham, and Head of Performance Nutrition, Dr Kevin Currell, along with contributions from the Performance Director of GB Boxing, Rob McCracken, GB Canoeing Canoe Slalom Technical Coach, Mark Ratcliffe, and Ian Gatt.
Some of the issues it raises include:
If you are interested in listening to this podcast you can find it here.
Higher Education Academy Network
The starting point for anyone involved in lecturing in Higher Education (HE) and/or Further Education (FE) is the Higher Education Academy Network. The Higher Education Academy Network offers the opportunity to share ideas and develop them with like-minded colleagues in your own subject area. The Higher Education Academy Network for Hospitality, Leisure, Sport and Tourism is one of 24 subject centres that make up the Generic Centre. This provides information on learning and teaching in sports related areas and the aim of this Centre is to share good practice in learning and teaching.
www.careers-in-sport.co.ukThe Careers in Sport guide provides an in-depth analysis of the different career options available in the world of sport, providing helpful advice on the qualifications and experience required for a career in sport.
www.futuremorph.orgThis website from the Science Council is designed to show just some of the places that studying science, technology, engineering and maths can take you.
Careerjet is an employment search engine for the UK. It allows you to search a growing selection of jobs listed on company sites as well as jobsites in one go saving you the trouble of having to go to each site individually.
Lists the job opportunities within the NHS, so mainly for those interested in a clinical career.
Caters for all positions and studentships within higher education. Has an easy to use search engine, as well as e-mail updates on job openings. Also includes profiles of potential employers.
Job Hop Now is an UK job site with jobs in UK from job boards, recruiters and employers. Instead of going to many different sources and missing out the closing soon jobs, users can save time by going to our website and viewing all jobs from different sources.
A website for those wanting to work in the leisure and fitness industry. Includes job listing for all the major health clubs and gyms, as well as information on obtaining the correct training to get into the leisure industry.
Is a daily recruitment website for people looking for jobs in the leisure industry; including health and fitness, sport and spa.
Look for jobs and careers advice spanning the leisure, fitness and wellbeing industry with our dedicated website and job search.
www.lifecoach-directory.org.ukThe purpose of the site is ultimately to provide the UK with a huge life coach support network, enabling individuals to find a life coach close to them and appropriate for their needs. This is a free, confidential service that will help those seeking a new direction in their life to find the encouragement they need.
This website provides lots of information on tips for job seeking, postgraduate options and careers open days.
A great resource for finding jobs in sport and physical activity.
The Association for Physical Education.
A website for those interested in teaching. Includes a UK job search for teaching positions.
Caters mainly for teachers but there are job listings for those wishing to go into lecturing in further and higher education.
Advertises jobs in elite level sport and has a useful e-mail newsletter for the latest developments in elite sport.
Graduate Recruitment Bureau, a leading graduate recruitment consultancy in the UK. As a consultancy we offer free one to one advice, guidance through applications and personal job listings to students and graduates.
Did you know there are over 50 different careers available in football? provides up-to-date information, interviews with professionals in the game and next steps for your current situation. Also follow us on Twitter @football_career for the latest vacancies in professional football.
Trovit provides a full and complete list of job ads published in thousands of classified websites which allows users to save time and effort during their search for Jobs by showing the most interesting and relevant job offers in one page.
A job board for searching local and international jobs and internships with over 100,000 job descriptions.
Features applications for the UK’s top companies, little-known organisations, and everything in between.
Inspiring Interns are the UK’s leading graduate recruitment agency, connecting top graduates to the best employers UK-wide. Check out the sports section of their job listings for graduate jobs and internships across Sports and Fitness, with a focus on sports marketing and operations.
A job search engine that indexes jobs directly from companies' career websites, placement agencies and job boards.
Our website contains advice articles, CV and interview tips, as well as a jobs board where we advertise on behalf of top employers.
www.adzuna.co.ukAdzuna is a UK based job search engine that lists jobs from over 1,000 sources. A free CV evaluation tool and comprehensive salary stats help jobseekers make smart decisions about their next career move.
Gatteway Career Management is a group of experts in Career Coaching, Career Management and Performance Improvement.