If you’re thinking about a career change and have a passion for all things health and fitness then switching to a job in the sector could be a good move. People who are passionate about what they do always perform far better and are likely to enjoy an increased quality of life.
Certain positions provide on the job training while others may require further study or experience. This can usually be gained on a part-time basis while you continue to work, which only those serious about the move will undertake. Whether you’re stuck in a job you hate, newly unemployed or just looking for a fresh challenge, there are a number of opportunities to start in the sector.
When you think of health and fitness careers one of the first that springs to mind is likely to be personal trainer. Anyone searching the job market will constantly see adverts for new ones which makes it tempting but also arouses a certain amount of suspicion. If there are so many on offer does that mean there’s a high turnover, and if so, why?
What many fail to realise is that it’s not as simple as turning up to a gym and shouting at someone on a treadmill. Personal trainers need to build up a client base first, whether working in a gym or solo, and put in plenty of work devising appropriate plans based on individual clients. Only when a solid reputation is built will the real money roll in.
Another popular career, which plenty of people come to later in life, is nursing. The process of becoming a nurse has changed in the past few decades with a degree in nursing now required to work in the field. This requires plenty of commitment but if you enjoy helping others and learning about the body then it is worth it.
You’ll need to be compassionate and caring, with an interest in health. There are lots of jobs in the sector and after qualifying registering with a reputable nursing agency should speed up the process of getting a full-time job. You can then specialise further down the line.
Focusing on more specific areas of the body than general nursing, physiotherapists work with patients to improve their movement and function. Whether it’s an elderly person looking to make walking easier or an athlete recovering from an injury, every patient is different.
The same as with nursing, a degree is required to become a physiotherapist. It is a rewarding profession which allows you to remove people’s pain and improve their quality of life. As well as working for the NHS becoming a physiotherapist offers many other opportunities such as research, lecturing and running a private practice.
To get involved with a sport you love but in a working capacity, becoming a team physician is a great option. Every professional team has a group of medical professionals who look after the players/athletes health and the team physician has the role of managing the medical staff and services.
This is a high pressure role but a vital one for the team to perform well. There are various ways to attain such a position. Having a background in medicine, either as a doctor or physiotherapist for example, and gaining experience of management is the best route.
As well as being physically prepared the focus on athletes being mentally prepared has increased greatly in the last few decades. Sport psychologists work with teams and individuals to assess their needs and abilities, monitoring performance and developing ways to improve. A background in medicine or psychology will go a long way to starting such a career.