Sports Psychology Program the Clear Winner on

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After football fans pull themselves away from the annual college Bowl Championship Series, the truly sports-minded might consider a sports psychology education and career. A sports psychology program is the first step in career paths ranging from personal trainer to certified sports psychologist, and the interest -- both online and professional -- in this industry is growing.

For the Americans who can't disassociate "Happy New Year" and the start of the college Bowl Championship Series, recommends that education-minded sports enthusiasts consider a course in sports psychology. Online interest in this industry is strong, with online marketing firm Overture logging over 26,000 searches for information about sports psychology careers in November. Professional-level interest is also garnering support through a growing number of recognized professional associations.

Although graduate-level sports psychology education is highly specialized and not available at every brick-and-mortar institution, sports lovers wanting to learn more about the field before committing to a doctoral education can find convenient sport psychology courses online at Online ( Knowing more about goal setting and concentration techniques, handling pressure, and avoiding burnout can benefit:

  •     Athletes
  •     Recreation directors
  •     Coaches
  •     Athletic trainers
  •     Parents
  •     Exercise and fitness instructors

Career coaching sites, such as (, can help those who prefer a fifty-yard-line to a desk by directing them to courses in sports psychology and a more satisfying vocation. According to spokesperson Christyn Randolph, those who choose careers that interest them enjoy their jobs and are more likely to be successful. "People who are passionate about what they do work harder and with more energy."

In an online discussion with, legendary sports psychologist Jim Loeher, Ph.D., discusses how sports psychology applies to everyday life, "We need to be thinking of ourselves as elite athletes, not for sport, but for life. All of the lessons about the importance of diet, exercise, mental preparation, positive thinking, sleep, recovery, goal setting and passion apply to everyday life."

For certified sports psychologists, the American Association of Applied Sports Psychology requires a doctoral degree, preferably in psychology or exercise/sports sciences, continuing education in biomechanics and psychology, and the completion of 400 hours of supervised experience in sports psychology.

The Association for the Advancement of Applied Sports Psychology had 1,200 members in 2006, and there are several other professional organizations and professional journals dedicated to sport psychology, including The Sport Psychologist. The American Psychological Association also has a specific division -- Division 47 -- for professionals of Exercise and Sport Psychology. is a one-stop source for students and prospective students. In addition to interactive career coaching, the site offers information on courses, online degree programs, and computer training.


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