Your Questions About Health And Fitness Careers

Laura asks…

I'm making a career move and would like to move into fitness…?

I studied health and fitness for two years in college before changing my major and earning a bachelor's degree in communications. For the past seven years I've been working in the marketing communications field — and now realize it's not the line of work for me. I'd like to go back to my original plan of working in the fitness field.

Any suggestions on next steps? What certifications, training and/or additional education should I seek? Will there be jobs out there for me?

dknol answers:

I use to be a personal trainer. It's a good field and the money is pretty good ($20-50/hr.). The only downside is the hours (you have to be able to meet with your clients whenever they are available). Also, depending on where you work they may only give you a few clients and then you will have to try to find more on your own. I don't want to discourage you though because it is a fun field to work in.

You really have to watch out on the certifications. Some of them are rip-offs and many places won't accept them. Since you have a bachelor's degree you can take any of them (doesn't matter what it's in). Here are the three I would recommend that are accepted at most places.

CSCS (if you also want to work with athletes in team settings) or the NSCA-CPT. Both of these are through the NSCA. These are accepted pretty much everywhere and are very good certifications if not the best. However, they are more expensive and the tests are more difficult (especially for the CSCS).
Http://www.nsca-cc.org/

ACSM Certification. Another good organization and accepted almost everywhere.
Http://www.acsm.org/AM/Template.cfm?Section=ACSM_Certified_Personal_Trainer

ACE Certification. Probably the least expensive and easiest. However, it may not be accepted by as many places. Although, I knew several personal trainers who had ACE and they had no problem.
Http://www.acefitness.org/getcertified/certification_pt.aspx

These organizations will sell you the material needed to study for the test or include it in the testing fee.

Concerning the jobs, it can sometimes be competitive depending on where you live. If you live in a bigger city, you will have a better chance at getting a personal training/fitness instructor job.

Hope this helps!

Jenny asks…

What kind of degrees can you attain relating to exercise science, diet, nutrition, fitness, etc.?

I want to go back to school for my masters and I think I want to do find a career working in a fitness, diet, exercise, health related field. I just need some ideas on degrees I could research and even jobs I could eventually attain. Thanks!

dknol answers:

Kiniseology (wow I spelled that wrong lol)
nutrition
human ecology
nursing
personal fitness trainer (I am not sure if they have a masters for this though)
physical education

Nancy asks…

Medical Careers please help its very much appreciated?

What are some careers in which i can work with pregnant teens, adults and their babies
Im thinkin about ultrasound technician
Planned parenthood
But i really dont know what to get into

I love babies, pregnancy, im really interested in teen pregnancy, i happen to love health and im very interested in sex eduacation and stuff like that

Is there any carrers in health amd fitness

Please help i really appreciate your advice and answers

Advice is appreciated

dknol answers:

Nurse
Nurses Aid
Medical Assistant
Radiologist (also known as Ultrasound)
Family Medicine / General Practice
Dietitians
Nutritionist
Social Worker
Human Development
Pediatrics
Health Coordinator
OBGYN

Those are just some. They all work with women and children. Try resourcing those that I listed, just to see which one best fits you. Good luck and hope this helps =)

Michael asks…

Physical therapist, health care administrator, or pharmacist?

Which care is best for me: physical therapist, health care administrator, or pharmacist?
Here is a little about me:
I love anatomy and the whole idea of health & fitness. I also enjoy sports and working out myself. I like talking to people and socializing as well. Also I am an excellent English student and a fairly good Math student, too. I want a career that I will enjoy, make decent money ($60,000+), and not have to go to school over 7 years to become. Also something that is interesting and not just the exact same ol' thing day after day. Right now I work at a local pharmacy (CVS) as a cashier in the store and it seems as though pharmacy is a bit boring. But then again, maybe I am not seeing the whole picture. But after doing a lot of research I can to the above careers and each of them interest me in a different way so based on the info I provided which is best for me?
If there are any other jobs that fit the above criteria and that you think would suit me then do tell! Thanks.

dknol answers:

I cannot think of a more fulfilling career than physical therapy for you! Your interests are at the ideals of a PT…health and fitness are our ultimate goals. Our knowledge of anatomy of the neuromusculoskeletal system is extensive (and after 7 years, I still learn more everyday). You will be required to take gross human anatomy.

As a physical therapist, you will have many opportunities to work in a variety of settings including hospitals, rehabilitations centers, outpatient clinics, work hardening programs, schools, private practice, home health, extended care facilities…the list goes on.

While some leave the field due to injury, I would estimate that it is less than other health care professions since part of education and core knowledge is ergonomics…how to do things the right way without hurting yourself. I see far more nurses, patient care technicians, pharmacits, lab techs, and even doctors as patients with work related injuries as opposed to physical therapists. However, it also highly depends on the setting you work in.

My job is never the same day to day. My reasoning and problem solving skills are tested every day. I have seen hundreds of patients for rehab from their total knee replacement…but no two ever act the same!

If you like to “socialize” and enjoy being around people, I think you will get much more fulfillment at a PT as opposed to an adiministrator (who often do not work directly with people) or pharmacist. You get to know most of your patients deeply…I will spend more time with a patient in one wek than most people do with their physician for an entire year.

All PT programs in the US are now either MS or DPT level…the structure of most programs is such that you will complete it in 6-7 years. Math is always a plus…helpful for the chem and physics you will need to take.

Average salary in 2005 for a new graduate was just under $45,000/year, but most PTs with a few years of experience made between $55,000-$65,000.

This is an excellent time to persue PT as enrollment has been dropping…making it somewhat “less competitive” to get into the professional phase.

George asks…

Some one who works in health,diet,nutrition,fitness…?

How did you get into the career? Do you enjoy it? Does it pay well? Tell me about it please..

I graduated this past year and im trying to figure out what career id like to go with : )

dknol answers:

I'm a RN BSN and it's a very good career, you'll always have employment no matter where you live. It does pay well, search google for your area of the country. We have many responsibilities, it's not easy but very rewarding to help other people feel better and get well.
We teach health, nutrition and fitness so you can do all of those things.

I think Sports Medicine is also a lucrative career and would also get you into all those areas you're seeking. Check out the library and find some information there for free, as well as your guidance counselor from school.

Good luck and hope you'll find something you enjoy, you'll always be successful then!

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