Kinesiology Major Requirements and Career Information

Jul 27, 2018

Kinesiology majors are typically offered as a small portion of a larger degree program in sports medicine, physical therapy, or a similar area, but there are a few universities offering 4-year degree programs that focus specifically on [kinesiology|] or the study of human movement. Learn about the program requirements and courses for this major, as well as career prospects.

Essential Information

Kinesiology programs may lead to a career in the rehabilitative sciences or may act as a precursor to graduate studies in physical therapy, occupational therapy and sports medicine. Kinesiology majors may be required to take courses in biomechanics, motor learning, exercise physiology, human anatomy, nutrition, sports physiology, fitness testing, and more. Some programs require that students choose a particular area of focus, such as exercise science or fitness. Most programs also require that students complete a semester-long internship at a local health clinic, fitness facility, or rehabilitation center. The basic prerequisites for a program of this type are a high school diploma, satisfactory ACT or SAT scores, and prior study in mathematics and natural sciences.

Bachelor's Degree Programs in Kinesiology

Courses combine classroom lectures with laboratory experience. Most students have access to state-of-the-art laboratories and fitness centers. Some typical courses are listed below:

  • Anatomy and physiology
  • Physiology of exercise
  • Psychology of sport
  • Motor development and control
  • Exercise and body composition
  • Assessment methods for kinesiology

Possible Careers

There are several careers available for graduates of an undergraduate program in kinesiology. Many kinesiology students opt to earn a graduate degree in fields of rehabilitation and sports medicine. Others segue into entry-level positions in fitness and health science. Some popular career options are listed below:

  • Personal trainer
  • Fitness instructor
  • Massage therapist
  • Physical therapist
  • Occupational therapist
  • Chiropractor
  • Athletic director
  • Athletic trainer
  • Strength conditioning coach
  • Exercise physiologist

Job Outlook and Salary

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that employment of fitness trainers and instructors is projected to grow 8% from 2014-2024. These professionals earned a mean annual salary of $40,970 as of May 2015, according to the BLS.

A four year kinesiology bachelor's degree teaches students the complexities of human movement and ways to improve it or treat injuries related to it. There are a variety of prosperous careers related to this field that holding this career will qualify you for, in addition to the possibility of earning graduate education later on.

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