Physical Performance & Sports Studies

Southwestern College offers a physical performance and sports studies major that is designed for students who are kinesthetically talented, academically prepared, and have developed strong interests in health, wellness, and assisting in the development of human performance for athletes and individuals. 

The physical performance and sports studies program includes a wide breadth of general and specific academic knowledge and skills across the fields of physical education, exercise, and athletic training.  There are four possible outcomes to the program depending upon the interests and academic abilities of the student:

  1. Successful completion of the courses in the major and additional courses.  This approach earns a bachelor’s degree.
  2. For students who desire more in-depth knowledge of weightlifting and training, additional course work is added to the program to prepare for and take the certification exam to be a certified strength and conditioning specialist (CSCS) who is able to apply scientific knowledge to train athletes for the primary goal of improving athletic performance.
  3. Outcomes 1 and 2 plus additional courses in the sciences such as anatomy and physiology as well as nutrition.  Also, additional courses in athletic training are needed. Students completing this major and the additional courses will prepare to become an American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) certified health fitness specialist.
  4. For those with a strong interest in learning science and medicine, an additional certification is possible and it represents the fourth outcome, which leads to the ACSM (Certified Clinical Exercise Specialist).

Career opportunities include assistant coaching in collegiate sports, being a certified strength and conditioning specialist (personal trainer), careers in health and wellness and graduate studies in exercise science.

Education