Uncover the Best Career Opportunities for Fitness Fans: A Comprehensive Guide with Salaries and Responsibilities!
For fitness lovers, finding employment in a field that involves fitness or athletics can be an excellent way to turn a passion into a career. If you’re a fitness enthusiast, learning about the different career opportunities for fitness lovers can help you choose a path you enjoy. Finding a career you’re passionate about can help you maintain your morale throughout your career and may allow you to excel by applying your passion professionally. In this article, we discuss the best jobs for fitness lovers, including what they do and their average salaries.
21 Top jobs for fitness lovers
These career opportunities provide jobs that allow you to apply your love of fitness to your work:
National average salary: $28,875 per year
Primary duties: A lifeguard protects swimmers at a body of water, such as a pool, lake, river or ocean. The lifeguard monitors the water for potential hazards and the behavior of swimmers to provide assistance when a swimmer is in distress. Lifeguards often enforce rules both in the water and on the land around the water to keep swimmers safe. Lifeguards require physical fitness to help swimmers in the water safely and effectively.
2. Tour guide
National average salary: $29,542 per year
Primary duties: A tour guide leads one or more tour guests along a planned route, providing interesting information to the guests as they do . A tour guide may work in a building, such as a museum or historical location. They may also work as a guide in a town or city, leading guests around on foot, on bicycle or in a vehicle, and provide information about the different locations they pass or stop.
National average salary: $29,729 per year
Primary duties: A coach manages the players on an athletic team, providing instruction and helping them develop their skills. They may organize and lead practices for members of the team, working with them both in units and individually to improve their capabilities. A coach is also responsible for choosing which players to use during games and for making adjustments as needed. A coach may be a volunteer or part-time employee at a local organization or hold a full-time position for a professional team or scholastic organization.
4. Martial arts instructor
National average salary: $32,475 per year
Primary duties: A martial arts instructor teaches students how to perform martial arts during structured classes. Martial arts instructors often specialize in one art, however, they may train and teach in more than one as well. Instructors commonly teach group classes while also offering the opportunity for private or small group sessions. A martial arts instructor may specialize in teaching a particular age group or type of student, or teach a range of classes covering a broad student body.
5. Personal trainer
National average salary: $35,831 per year
Primary duties: A personal trainer provides fitness advice and guidance to a client. A personal trainer creates specific workout routines for the client to follow, either on their own or under direct supervision. Personal trainers may work full time for an individual client. However, it’s common for a trainer to have many clients and receive payment on a session-by-session basis.
National average salary: $36,508 per year
Primary duties: A journalist covers new stories, providing reporting based on direct observation, research and interviews. They may work in print media, television, radio or online. A journalist often specializes in a specific coverage beat, such as a health and fitness reporter or a sports reporter.
National average salary: $37,739 per year
Primary duties: A referee is a sports official who oversees a sporting event, ensuring that players follow the rules and enforcing any penalties associated with violations. The referee may also keep score and file other official paperwork for a league. Referee opportunities range from volunteer work to full-time positions with professional, college or youth sports associations.
8. CrossFit coach
National average salary: $39,298 per year
Primary duties: A CrossFit coach provides instruction for students at a CrossFit gym to assist with their workouts. A CrossFit coach may be responsible for developing and posting a daily workout for students to complete when they arrive at the gym. The coach also offers assistance to students, working with them to improve their technique and ensure they participate safely. A CrossFit coach may own their gym or work as an employee of a gym.
National average salary: $45,254 per year
Primary duties: A professional dancer performs choreographed dance moves. Dancers may specialize in a range of styles including ballroom, hip hop, ballet and Broadway. They may work as part of an entertainment production, such as a musical play, or as a background dancer for a musician. Dancers may also work independently, contracting to positions or using social networks to share and monetize their dance moves.
10. Recreation therapist
National average salary: $47,345 per year
Primary duties: A recreation therapist uses recreational activities to help patients with both physical and mental recovery and development. A recreational therapist meets with patients to discuss and identify their needs and capabilities. The therapist then creates a personalized therapy plan for the patient to follow to help them meet their goals.
11. Physical education teacher
National average salary: $47,558 per year
Primary duties: A physical education teacher manages gym classes for a school. They may work with one or more other physical education teachers to divide classes or may be the sole physical education instructor for the school. The physical education teacher is responsible for creating daily activities for students, helping them to maintain their physical activity and ensuring they follow any rules and safety responsibilities while participating.
12. Group fitness instructor
National average salary: $49,344 per year
Primary duties: A group fitness instructor leads a class of students through a fitness program. A group fitness instructor may specialize in a range of fitness class types, including circuit training, aerobics and yoga. Group fitness instructors often work in a gym, however, a group fitness instructor may also hold online classes with students connecting through a video chat room and participating in the exercise in their own space.
National average salary: $49,656 per year
Primary duties: A dietitian provides dietary advice to patients in medical facilities. A dietitian often works with medical staff at the facility to create plans designed to fit the specific health and medical needs of each patient. The dietitian also monitors the results of the patient’s dietary plan, making adjustments as needed to account for changes in status or unexpected results.
14. Gym manager
National average salary:$51,131 per year
Primary duties: A gym manager is a senior professional at a fitness location. The gym manager ensures that the gym business remains functional and provides an effective service for customers. The gym manager often oversees a staff of multiple employees, including managing shift assignments, hiring and terminating employment. Gym managers are often responsible for setting policies at the gym, both for staff and customers.
15. Athletic director
National average salary: $56,574 per year
Primary duties: An athletic director manages the organized sports for a school or university. The athletic director meets with representatives of the different athletic programs, the student body and education officials to discuss the needs and capabilities of the sports programs. The athletic director allocates funding and other resources to sports organizations to provide the opportunities they need to succeed and benefit the students.
National average salary: $57,626 per year
Primary duties: An umpire is an official for baseball games, responsible for calling balls, strikes, outs and other official rulings. An umpire may work alone, or as part of a team, with each umpire responsible for a specific base or set of bases. Umpires may work as a volunteer for a local community organization or part- or full-time in a paid position for a league.
17. Massage therapist
National average salary: $67,995 per year
Primary duties: A massage therapist provides physical care to patients, applying pressure to the patient’s body for therapeutic purposes. A massage therapist may work exclusively with their hands or use additional devices such as rollers, electric massagers and other tools. A massage therapist may work out of a designated massage facility, within a gym or other athletic facility, for an athletic institution, such as a professional sports team, or independently.
National average salary:$72,172 per year
Primary duties: A chiropractor is a licensed professional who provides physical adjustments to patients, using their hands and specialized tools. A chiropractor manipulates their patient’s body to provide services that include pain reduction, inflammation management and mobility stimulation. A chiropractor may work with athletes seeking rehabilitation services, as well as with nonathletes who require relief for nonathletic maladies.
19. Physical therapist
National average salary: $81,468 per year
Primary duties: A physical therapist helps patients who have lost performance capabilities because of an injury or illness. The physical therapist develops a treatment plan for the patient, which includes exercises and potential restrictions. This allows the patient to work on developing their muscles, tendons and ligaments to regain lost functionality.
20. Occupational therapist
National average salary: $82,244 per year
Primary duties: An occupational therapist is a health care professional who helps individuals develop the skills and functions they need in their daily lives. An occupational therapist may work with patients of a variety of functional levels, developing unique treatment plans for each patient. Occupational therapists may work with individuals with congenital disabilities or those recovering from injuries they sustained.
21. Software developer
National average salary: $99,002 per year
Primary duties: A software developer assists in creating software programs and digital applications. A developer may participate in many phases of creation, including brainstorming, planning, coding and testing. Software developers may work in a range of fields, including in the development of fitness applications that assist users in planning and executing workout programs.
15 More jobs for fitness lovers
There are many job opportunities that provide exciting possibilities for fitness lovers. Additional jobs for fitness enthusiasts include:
Fitness apparel designer
Fitness tech engineer
High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) coach
11 Fitness-Related Jobs (That Aren’t Personal Training)
Fitness refers to the condition and functioning of a person’s body. Professionals in the fitness industry generally strive to improve their own fitness or that of others, whether through activity, research or reporting. If you’re interested in pursuing a career in this broad health industry, it’s important to know what options are available to you. In this article, we introduce and discuss 11 jobs in the field of fitness that aren’t personal training, including information about what each job entails and how much you can expect to earn.
11 fitness jobs besides personal training
A job in the fitness industry can be any role that centers on maintaining your own physical fitness, helping to improve others’ fitness or studying and reporting on areas concerning fitness. Here are 11 such jobs to consider. For the most up-to-date Indeed salaries, please click on the links below:
National average salary: $30,094 per year
Primary duties: A coach, also known as an athletic coach, is responsible for developing the skills of amateur or professional athletes. They commonly work for schools or athletic teams, particularly in sports such as soccer, field hockey, basketball, football, softball, baseball, wrestling and tennis. Their primary duties include recruiting talent, mentoring athletes, planning and conducting practices, working to improve athletes’ weaknesses, devising and discussing strategies and executing these strategies during competition. The coach also oversees the physical fitness of the members of the team so that they’re in peak condition to compete.
2. Martial arts instructor
National average salary: $33,080 per year
Primary duties: A martial arts instructor’s role is to teach pupils the philosophy and techniques of a specific martial art—a combat-based sport or method of self-defense or attack. Martial arts instructors often specialize in a single martial art—such as taekwondo, judo, jiujitsu, boxing or wrestling—though many teach mixed martial arts, which combines various methods, philosophies and approaches. The primary duties of martial instructors include giving group or private martial arts lessons, devising methods of assessment to measure improvement, promoting physical conditioning and providing support to pupils.
3. Exercise physiologist
National average salary: $36,619 per year
Primary duties: An exercise physiologist is a health care professional who studies the bodily functions associated with exercise and applies this knowledge to create custom exercise-based programs for recovery or improvement. They commonly work with patients with chronic diseases, such as heart or lung disease. To develop the most appropriate exercise program, exercise physiologists gather a patient’s past medical history, determine the patient’s limits and health risks, measure vital signs and discuss personal goals. Professionals in this field commonly work as part of multidisciplinary health care teams, contributing knowledge for the development of holistic care plans.
4. Fitness equipment technician
National average salary: $44,565 per year
Primary duties: A fitness equipment technician installs, maintains and repairs exercise equipment, particularly specialized equipment such as treadmills, stationary bicycles and step machines. They answer calls by gyms, individuals or anyone else who owns exercise equipment that requires servicing. In addition to their primary duties, fitness equipment technicians also inspect machines to diagnose issues, perform routine cleaning and oiling and occasionally refurbish old machines. They may also be responsible for billing their clients and instructing equipment owners about the proper use of products.
5. Fitness writer
National average salary: $45,612 per year
Primary duties: A fitness writer is a journalist who specializes in health and fitness topics. They often work for periodicals such as newspapers and specialty health magazines. The topics they write about include fitness trends, diet and nutrition, developments related to exercise and health and tips for maintaining physical fitness. Many fitness writers have expertise in the topics they write about, but research is an essential component of the job as well. To write accurate, informative pieces, fitness writers consult a variety of written sources and interview experts in the relevant fields.
6. Physical education teacher
National average salary: $47,407 per year
Primary duties: A physical education teacher is an educator in the areas of physical development, athletics and health. They commonly work for public or private learning institutions at the elementary, middle school and high school levels. Commonly known as gym teachers, these education professionals plan, demonstrate and oversee athletic activities, but they also provide important education concerning the importance of physical activity, the effects of exercise on the body and the value of proper nutrition. Common activities for physical education teachers include planning lessons in accordance with curriculum standards and explaining how to perform exercises to optimize physical fitness.
National average salary: $50,276 per year
Primary duties: A dietitian is a health consultant with expertise in nutrition and the effects of different types of food on the body. They may work with individuals or institutions to create health plans or programs. On an individual level, they speak with clients to determine health needs and goals, develop eating and nutrition plans based on their findings and monitor clients’ progress to assess plan efficacy. On an institutional level, they often work with schools, hospitals and other facilities to develop menus and promote healthy food choices.
8. Gym manager
National average salary: $51,134 per year
Primary duties: A gym manager, also known as a fitness manager, oversees the business operations of a gym or other fitness facility. They apply their knowledge of fitness to improve the functions and services of their organization, such as by hiring knowledgeable instructors and trainers. In addition, they’re typically responsible for hiring other members of the staff, training and scheduling them and addressing any issues concerning exercise equipment, utilities, payroll or membership. Additional duties of the job include promoting their business and determining the rates of membership.
9. Fitness product or apparel designer
National average salary: $62,419 per year
Primary duties: A fitness product or apparel designer is responsible for designing equipment or clothing that optimizes or aids in users’ fitness goals. They generally work for fashion, lifestyle or niche companies that serve fitness enthusiasts. Depending on the focus of their employer, a designer may work on creating footwear, clothing, accessories or workout materials such as weights, bands and equipment. They may collaborate with specialists in physiology and other health sciences fields to create sketches and plans for products that foster comfort or efficacy during exercise.
10. Massage therapist
National average salary: $73,162 per year
Primary duties: A massage therapist gives massages to treat clients who’re experiencing pain, stress or tension or recovering from injuries. These treatments can help to improve blood circulation to troublesome muscles and facilitate healing. The duties of a massage therapist include gathering information about clients’ symptoms and medical history, discussing their health goals, physically evaluating troublesome areas of the body and manipulating muscles to provide relief. The job typically requires physical strength to apply the correct amount of pressure for the appropriate amount of time.
11. Fitness model
National average salary: $75,048 per year
Primary duties: Fitness models are professionals paid to attract buyers of fitness or fitness-related products by posing in photos or videos. They tend to possess strong, lean physiques, which generally appeal to potential consumers in the fitness industry. Apparel and equipment brands hire fitness models to display their products for advertisement, and fitness periodicals use them to encourage readers to buy issues. Aside from working hard to maintain their physique, fitness models work with agents to book jobs, take directions from photographers and videographers to produce attractive images and commonly promote brands through their social media channels.
12. Physical therapist
National average salary: $82,365 per year
Primary duties: A physical therapist is a health care professional who helps sick or injured patients to recover by improving their pain or ability to move certain parts of the body. Often, they also work with patients showing signs of impending degeneration, such as early arthritis, to prevent worsening. Physical therapists play an important part in many multidisciplinary health care teams, working closely with physicians and surgeons to create and execute effective care plans. Additional duties may include evaluating a patient’s condition, educating them on home exercises and discussing the recovery process with them and family members.