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Sports Psychology Degree Programs

Have you ever wondered if it would be possible to use your passion and understanding of sports in order to create your dream career? If so, a bachelor's degree in sport psychology is probably an excellent career choice for you. Sport psychology is a relatively new field that is being offered by many degree programs. It is the study of sports and exercise in correlation to human behavior. A degree in sport psychology would enable you to create a relationship between sports science, psychology, and sociology. Graduates receiving a degree in this area are highly trained to enhance the performance and well-being of individual athletes, sports teams, and athletic organizations.

sports psychology schoolNumerous schools offer sport psychology degree. Programs in sport psychology typically combine general education coursework in the liberal arts and sciences with specialized coursework in performance enhancement, coaching, group dynamics, sports culture, the psychology of sport and exercise, injury, and rehabilitation. To receive a bachelor's degree in sport psychology most programs require 180 quarter units and you must also maintain a GPA of 3.0. You may also want to keep in mind students pursuing a education are often given the opportunity to acquire beneficial work experience through professional internships and fieldwork practice.

A bachelor's degree in sport psychology can be obtained in multiple universities as well as through online courses. Not only will you gain a degree, but also through fieldwork experiences and internships you will be provided with the opportunity to work as part of a collaborative team, which is a vital characteristic of a sport psychologist. You should ensure that the university or online degree program of your choice focuses on academics and not only provides the courses you will need to obtain the degree, but also provides the education, knowledge, and experience to allow you to be successful in the field of sport psychology.

The main focus of a sport psychologist is to conduct research for the intention of practical application. A sport psychology education provides you with the skills to utilize scientific based research in order to understand the effects of psychology on physical performance in addition to how participating in physical activity effects psychological development, health, and well-being. Sport psychologists often find career opportunities as teachers, consultants, coaches, and researchers, and are able to share their knowledge with others, including coaches, athletes, trainers, managers, and those with developmental disabilities. A student with a degree in psychology is educated in a range of topics, including performance enhancement, sports and grief, psychological assessment, recovery, weight management, health and wellness coaching, overtraining and burnout, and anxiety and stress management.

If you are interested in obtaining a degree it is also important for you to possess valuable characteristics such as, creativity, vision, optimism, mental focus, goal-setting skills, concentration, enthusiasm, and team work abilities. As a sport psychologist you will be working toward instilling these same characteristics in your clients.

Sports Psychology Schools


The life of a professional, collegiate, or even amateur athlete can be one filled with excitement and rewards. It is also one that involves much stress and tension. A healthy mind is a large piece of a healthy and competitive athlete.


If you have an interest in sports and associating with people in order to bring them to their peak level of performance and happiness, you may be well suited for a career as a Sports Psychologist. If this appeals to you, contact your local school for information on getting a degree as a Sports Psychologist.


The History of Sports Psychology


In 1898, a Psychologist named Norman Triplett performed a case study with competitive cyclists. He discovered that the athletes would perform better if they competed against other cyclists. Their times were considerably faster when they cycled with others. Some other important people in the field of Sports Psychology were Edward Scripture, Walter Miles, and B.C. Graves.


Coleman Griffith is considered the father of Sports Psychology. His studies were on basketball and football participants and he taught classes on the subject of Sports Psychology at the University of Illinois. In 1925, Griffith actually opened a research laboratory at the university campus. The Association of Applied Sports Psychology is also a great source of information on the profession.


If you want to also be a Sports Psychologist, contact your local school immediately for information and answers to any questions you may have. This may be the perfect career for you, but you will not know this if you do not seek information.




A successful athlete at any level has a healthy mind and a healthy body. He or she knows what healthy competition is and what is not. This athlete knows when to stop pushing his or her body, and that a healing body needs a healing mind. The road to this degree will involve a number of rigorous but informative classes. Some of the classes you will take, in addition to your core classes in the academic fields of math, science, English, and social studies, are:


• Anatomy
• General Psychology
• The History of Psychology
• Competition: which it is No Longer Fun
• Sociology
• Healing the Mind and Body
• Statistics
• Health
• Football, basketball, baseball (or the sports of your choice)
• Medical terminology
• Using Yoga
• Balance and Ballet
• Coaching the Coach


The mind of the athlete may need healing for a number of reasons. This healing could take place through therapy (individual or group), hypnotherapy, surveys, observation, counseling, relaxation methods, rest, and meditation means. The field can involve working with a young child who is afraid of failure or the field can be as complex as working with an Olympian who has a mental block.


You could work with a school, an organization, a community or campus center, a gym, a fitness center, a yoga and meditation facility, a college, a research lab, or have a private practice. There are many options for the Sports Psychologist. There are also many times when you will be needed. You goals will be optimum performance concerning the body and the mind for your patients.

The Tasks of a Sports Psychologist


When a school or organization calls a Sports Psychologist to come in and to help, the reasons could be many. And essentially, anyone who feels they need a Sports Psychologist could certainly contact and employ one. The athlete may need one or many of the services listed:


• Maintain an exercise program
• Visualize success
• Enhance athletic performance
• Relieve the pressures and stress
• Find joy and pleasure in the sport
• Heal from injuries
• Outthinking while outperforming the competition
• Knowing your competition
• Successful re-enactments


Others Can Benefit


There are other professions who can benefit from Sports Psychologists beyond the athlete. The methods and actions of an athlete can be comparable to other jobs. A successful salesman must scope out his competition, use his skills, and make sure he or she is at the top of his or her game in order to be successful. You can see how the techniques used for an athlete can also work for a businessman.

Other individuals you might benefit from a Sports Psychologist (beyond the athlete) are:

• Politicians
• Singers and entertainers
• Businessman
• Educators


Sports Psychologists do work with individuals in other competitive and stressful occupations and professions.