Sports nutrition courses teach students how to assess, counsel and address the nutritional needs of athletes and active individuals. At the undergraduate level, sports nutrition is generally a concentration area in the nutrition science or other related degree program. Sports nutrition degree programs are far more common at the master's degree level. Coursework includes lectures, research papers, and laboratory hours.
Students in sports nutrition courses will have the chance to learn about the following:
- Sports nutritionist and dietitian careers
- Nutrition planning for specific populations
- Sports nutrition education strategies
- Benefits of nutritional supplements
- Connections between exercise and nutrition
List of Common Courses
Understanding Nutrition Course
Participants explore the principles of nutrition and review the role and functions of fats, proteins, carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals and body fluids. Also discussed are metabolism, digestion and weight management. Students learn how nutrients affect physical activity. They also focus on the current trends in nutrition and the different views expressed regarding nutritional value.
Sports Nutrition Course
This course provides a scientific background for sports nutrition. Students learn about energy expenditure during exercise, the use of supplements, the proper dietary needs for training and basic nutritional concepts. Individuals gain an understanding of exercise physiology and learn how to create a nutritional fitness plan for each sport. Weight loss supplements and performance-enhancing drugs are also a point of emphasis.
Nutritional Counseling Techniques Course
Individuals taking this class learn about the importance of proper nutritional principles and develop skills to educate people about nutrition and health. The instructor teaches students to identify inappropriate eating behaviors and to recognize misconceptions about dieting and food. Students learn to counsel individuals and to make diet recommendations. Opportunities may be available to track and evaluate individual progress and utilize this data for case studies on nutrition, health and performance.
Weight Management Course
This course explores the influence of food on each of the body's organs as well as the impact that hormone imbalances may have on weight. Also discussed is how weight is affected by the digestive system. This course teaches participants how to create a nutritional program that may include a holistic approach to weight management.