A degree in Sports Psychology can open the door to a variety of careers. Since sports are such an integral part of our lives, it’s no surprise that sports psychology is a growing field. While athletes may appear unstoppable on the field, more often than not they are being assisted behind the scenes by a sports psychologist to strengthen their mental health in order to enhance their athletic performance and personal goals.
In addition to the obvious physical requirements of being an athlete, there is an also extreme psychological side to sports. With a degree sports in sports psychology, you can work with athletes to ensure that they maintain their strongest performances by providing them with an essential support system. By providing an athlete with psychological and motivational assistance, a sports psychologist can help athletes strengthen their mental health and reach their ambitious goals.
For sports psychologists who work directly with athletes, some of their responsibilities could include helping these athletes develop a competitive mindset, creating efficient pregame routines for the athletes, ensuring the athletes effectively handle loss, and helping the athlete enhance the quality of their practice. It is also common for an athlete to require the assistance of a sports psychologist when they become injured. A sports psychologist provides the necessary support for an athlete to get through the recovery process as well as return to their sport. The psychological aspects of sports injury can be traumatic for some athletes, but with the assistance of a sports psychologist, it is possible for an injured athlete to have a successful recovery and return to their sport.
Some of the more specific career paths that this degree may be used for include: team coach, sports research specialist, sport psychology professor, clinical sport psychologist, applied sport psychologist, and sports rehabilitation therapist. A sport psychology degree will allow you to thrive in these areas, as you will be capable of assisting athletes on both a physical and mental level—two of the most important aspects of becoming a successful athlete.
While it may sound limited, there are many career options outside of the sports world that one can choose from with a sport psychology degree. This degree expands beyond the realm of sports and has been increasingly recognized as “performance psychology”, and will allow you to work with people in all aspects of society. Doctors are among some of the professionals who often benefit from performance psychology. A performance psychologist may assist a doctor in gaining the confidence they need to perform a difficult surgery or return to their practice after losing a patient. Overall, this degree will allow you to work with a wide variety of people on an individual level as you assist them in obtaining their personal goals.
As a sport psychologist, it is important to understand what are OKRs and how they can be implemented in your work. OKR stands for “objective and key result,” so by utilizing this method you will help your clients understand their goals and how to achieve them. The OKR system is commonly used by businesses and teams to work together to reach an outcome rather than focus on individual performances. Research has shown that goal setting is an effective management tool as it allows teams to become more successful than they would otherwise.
The sport psychology degree comes in various forms and can be attainable through different types of higher-level education. Faulkner University provides students with the opportunity to receive a bachelor’s degree in sports psychology. This private university is a good choice, as its students take a variety of sports psychology courses while developing psychological perspectives and research methods. Faulkner University offers an online sports psychology degree option.
It is possible to further your sports psychology bachelor’s degree by receiving a master’s degree in sport psychology. For example, Drexel University offers online programs to achieve a master’s degree in Sport Coaching Leadership. Similarly, the University of Denver offers a master’s degree in Sports & Performance Psychology. If a full degree program does not fit into your schedule, California Southern University offers an accredited sports psychology certification program that will provide its students with similar benefits to the full sports psychology degree.
These national universities offer sports psychology degree programs in which the student will gain practical experience in the sports psychology field. Although these undergraduate programs and graduate programs may be executed in different styles, they are all national universities with accredited sports psychology programs. Regardless of whether you attend online programs or rely on a classroom setting, by attending a national university, you will be exposed to courses in sport science and higher-level sports such as those in the NCAA division, which will provide invaluable educational and real-world experience while striving toward your psychology degree.
Whether you achieve your sports psychology degree through an online degree program or an in-person degree program, you will experience sport psychology courses that will ensure your success in the world of sports or a related field.