Schools and Colleges with a Fitness Studies Major in the U.S.
Fitness studies majors prepare for careers as personal trainers, exercise instructors, physical education teachers and recreation center managers. Although not a traditional requirement, it is becoming more common for employers to seek fitness instructors who hold a bachelor's degree.
Selecting a Fitness Studies Program
Earning a bachelor's degree in fitness studies is important for career advancement; however, certification still remains the most important aspect of finding employment in the fitness field. Prospective students should choose a school that prepares its graduates for industry certifications. One option is the Certified Personal Trainer credential offered by the National Strength and Conditioning Association. Another is the Exercise Specialist credential from the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM).
The most common degree programs for fitness studies majors include topics in kinesiology, exercise science or physical education. While each of these programs provide a solid foundation for individuals who are interested in pursuing a career as either a personal trainer or fitness instructor, it's still important that prospective students evaluate their career goals before choosing a curriculum that meets their needs. For example, individuals who know they want to teach others should select a school that offers a physical education degree. Those who are interested in working as a personal or athletic trainer may prefer a kinesiology program.
Some exercise and wellness programs are offered through a school's nursing department. These fitness programs are a better selection for individuals who would like to work in medical rehabilitation centers or as health patient educators.
Largest Schools by Enrollment
|College/University||Student Population||Institution Type|
|Arizona State University||67,082||4-year, Public|
|Ohio State University||53,715||4-year, Public|
|University of Florida||51,474||4-year, Public|
|University of Minnesota - Twin Cities||51,140||4-year, Public|
|University of Central Florida||50,121||4-year, Public|
|The University of Texas at Austin||49,984||4-year, Public|
|Texas A & M University||48,039||4-year, Public|
|University of Michigan - Ann Arbor||41,028||4-year, Public|
|University of Houston||36,104||4-year, Public|
|San Diego State University||34,889||4-year, Public|
|University of Georgia||34,180||4-year, Public|
|North Carolina State University at Raleigh||32,872||4-year, Public|
|Wayne State University||31,024||4-year, Public|
|The University of Tennessee||30,410||4-year, Public|
|University of Iowa||29,152||4-year, Public|
|Texas State University - San Marcos||29,105||4-year, Public|
|West Virginia University||28,840||4-year, Public|
|University of Nevada - Las Vegas||28,600||4-year, Public|
|Troy University||28,303||4-year, Public|
|Georgia State University||28,229||4-year, Public|
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