It probably won’t come off as a big surprise to you to discover that the sports industry is riddled with many deeply entrenched misconceptions. When considering your options, it’s important not to let these 6 common misconceptions about sports careers prevent you from pursuing your dream job!
1. You need to be the next David Beckham to be successful in the industry.
Nonsense! If you feel that you are not quite cut out to be an athlete, do not despair. While having an interest in sports or keeping fit is a prerequisite for many careers in the sports industry, there are plenty of opportunities if you prefer to work from the side-lines.
2. You’ll either be a manager or a coach.
This is probably one of the most prevalent myths about careers in sports and also one of the most untrue. The industry is flourishing with opportunities in a variety of disciplines, including sports marketing, PR, sales, sports media, research and education. Whether you’re interested in helping people improve their lives and wellbeing through physical exercise, or whether you’d like to help athletes recover from injuries or achieve their full potential through modern technology and your expertise, your dream sports job is there for the taking!
3. It’ll be a high-pressured all-consuming profession.
Of course your work schedule will depend on the particular job you choose, but unless you decide to become a world-class athlete, it’s likely that your work patterns will fall under the 40 hours a week bracket, and consist of predictable shifts and manageable stress levels.
4. You need to specialize in one sport.
While many do get into the industry out of a passion for a particular sport or even a specific team, the opportunities are so varied that you can often end up working in a role that spans multiple sports. For instance, you could manage public relations for a variety of athletes and teams, lead groups of clients in a selection of different outdoor activities, or help to manage a sports brand that provides products for a range of sports.
5. The demand for jobs far outstrips the supply.
While the competition is certainly high for many sports careers, there are plenty of entry-level jobs for graduates looking to get a foot in the door. Indeed, the sports sector is one of very few industries not experiencing the full blows of economic recession. If you’re passionate and well-qualified, the roles are out there.
6. You don’t need a university degree to work in sports.
While sports careers are often vocational, many sports jobs do require at least an undergraduate-level qualification, and a specialized master’s could also be useful. Completing professional training at a reputable institution will carry a lot of weight with prospective employers, and will help you prepare for the various challenges of working in the sports industry, providing you with the specific expertise required for careers in sports science or sports management.