Careers in sport


Although the number of women working in sport is on the increase it is still an industry dominated by men. Men are more likely to hold positions of influence and authority. For example of the 113 members of the IOC only 13 are women. However both of the G.B. representatives are female. There has been little change in the percentage of women holding senior positions amongst governing bodies since 1968. This may be partly explained by the fact that the traditional route in to administration is from ex-players. Women are more likely to drop out of sport once their playing days are over in order to focus on domestic responsibilities. With greater awareness of gender equity amongst organisations more women will be encouraged to take up careers in sport, and will find that there are opportunities for them to do so.

Career options

These are a few of the careers that are available within the sports world; this is not an exhaustive list by any means. For further information on any of the jobs listed here, contact your school, college, university or local careers service.

Sports Development

Leisure/Recreation Management

Sport Media

Physiotherapy/Sports Medicine

Sports Scientist/Nutritionist

Outdoor Pursuits Instructor

The Services

Physical Education Teacher

Sports Administration


Relevant qualifications

There are various sports-related qualifications available through schools and colleges, for example A-Level PE, to find out what courses are available in your area contact local college or ask your school's Career Advisor.

Many universities offer degrees in Sports Science/Studies, Recreation Management etc. The content of these courses will vary between establishment and even courses with the same title will cover different subjects. Some degrees will have more of a scientific basis than others and you should find out as much as you can before making your final choices. Course information may be available from your school career office or can be obtained directly from the university department. Postgraduate courses offer the chance to specialise in a chosen area, the course may be research-based or taught. For further information contact your university careers service.

HNDs, Diplomas and Certificates. There are a wide range of courses in sport and recreation. They are designed to help people either entering the industry or those who want to further their careers. Your career office will have information on the courses available locally.

Vacancy information

Vacancies may be listed in health and fitness magazines, national newspapers, sports retail magazines, magazines on specific sports, local libraries and job centres.

Leisure recruitment agencies are also a good place to find work; these will be listed in your telephone directory. Recruitment agencies may also be available on the Internet and this can also be a useful source of vacancies.

The Institute of Leisure and Amenity Management (ILAM) produces a weekly mailing of job advertisements to which non-members can subscribe on a weekly basis. They can be contacted on .

The WSF produce a guide for women and girls on careers in sport which can be ordered via the office or by post, it costs £1.75 for members and £3.00 for non-members.

Womens Sports Foundation
WSF Factsheets

Careers in Sport
Did you know that sport and recreation currently employs around 350,000 people in Britain?

The WSF, in conjunction with the English Sports Council, has produced this 24 page booklet on job opportunities for women and girls. Jam packed with vital information it makes essential reading for anyone contemplating a career in sport and costs just £3.50 for members, £5.00 for non-members,

See the Publications page for more information on how to order.

Other research pages
| Research home
| Careers in sport
| Funding & sponsorship
| Health promotion
| Media coverage
| Physical education
| Eating disorders
| Participation

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