Planning Your Fitness and Health Promotion Career Path

  • Added:
    Mar 05, 2014
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Planning Your Fitness and Health Promotion Career Path Photo by Pamela Wendell

How do you plan your career path given the myriad opportunities that health and fitness industry offers today?

First, explore all diverse possibilities associated with the field and select the one that best suits your interests. Second, learn about those necessary initial steps that may eventually lead you to a career path of your choice. Third, complete basic necessary formal education that is required to enter the world of work. Fourth, get a sense of what you enjoy doing the most and upgrade your skills to make your next career move in the health and fitness industry.

Evolution of Health and Fitness Industry

Not too long ago we all considered it be a field for those who were not very bright in studies. But now health and fitness industry has become more structured and sophisticated than ever. It now offers legitimate careers to individuals who have an inclination towards fitness training and health promotion. Qualified and well trained fitness professionals are in demand more than ever to help people make healthy lifestyle choices.

Career Outlook

They are employed with retail fitness businesses, health clubs, hospitals, municipal recreation and community organizations and corporate houses. Many individuals also establish their own businesses. The industry offers a wide range of career choices and individuals can pursue their careers as fitness instructors, personal trainers, fitness consultants and wellness/fitness program developers.

What Do Health and Fitness Professionals Do?

Health and fitness professionals are able to

  • Assess the fitness levels and overall wellbeing of individuals
  • Design, implement and manage fitness and lifestyle programs for them
  • Provide fitness counseling, conduct workshops and group facilitation
  • Help individuals adopt health and fitness regime to meet their personal fitness goals
  • Help individuals make right lifestyle choices to ensure their optimal well being
  • Support health promotion and fitness initiatives
  • Develop health, fitness and wellness programs to meet diverse needs of individuals

Initial Steps That Help You Enter the Industry

Like all other traditional and non-traditional occupations, fitness and health promotion industry also requires individuals who have undergone a formal education and has in-depth awareness of anatomy and physiology, fitness assessment, health and nutrition, injury management, health promotion, fitness marketing and cross cultural awareness.

You need to at least have a diploma in fitness and health promotion. What you can do is enroll yourself into a fitness training program after completing secondary school. A number of colleges in Canada offer such programs to individuals who are interested in building a career in this industry. But make sure to enroll in a good college that offers you excellent field placement opportunities.

Minimum eligibility criteria to apply for a health promotion program in Toronto include a secondary school diploma or equivalent, English Grade 12 C or University, one Science Grade 11 or 12 C or University certificates or scores. The two-year course covers health and fitness concepts, approaches to stress management, exercise physiology, personal training, injury assessment and management, nutrition, health promotion and behavior change and exercise prescription. The program combines classroom learning and field placements.

Career Advancement

Once you enter the industry after completing your formal education, you get exposed to the actual working environment. Within a couple of years, you get a true sense of what you enjoy the most - personal training, group exercise, developing fitness programs, assessing behavior changes or injury assessment and management. You can consider doing an advanced course in the field of your choice and plan your next career move.

Author's Profile

Jason, the author of the article makes a reference to the fitness training program at Centennial College. Further in the article, he gives detail about the course and how it can help one to build a lucrative career.

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