Sports Management Careers

Find out about the types of jobs you could pursue in sports management. Read on to learn more about career options along with education requirements, job outlook, and salary information. Schools offering Education - Sports Management degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Is Sports Management?

Sports management professionals are responsible for the basic organization and scheduling of sport and/or recreation based clients. A sports manager could work for an individual athlete, recreation facility, or for a large organization and helps to keep business affairs in order behind the scenes. Sports agents represent athletes in contract negotiations. They may also handle other contract issues while promoting their clients. Recreation workers organize and supervise games, sports activities, and exercise programs at community centers, like senior citizen centers, camps, playgrounds, or aquatic centers. Marketing managers could work for sport organizations promoting events, collaborating with advertisers, or creating campaigns. They will work with outside art designers and upper executives to plan how best to advertise events or sell tickets.

See the table below for more information about the possible careers in this field, along with education requirements, job outlook, and expected income for each.

Sports Agent Recreation Worker Marketing Manager
Degree Required Bachelor's degree Bachelor's degree Bachelor's degree
Education Field of Study Sports management Recreational sports management Advertising or journalism
Job Growth (2014-2024) 3% (agents and business managers of artists, performers and athletes)* 10%* 9%*
Median Salary (2015) $62,940 (agents and business managers of artists, performers and athletes)* $23,320* $128,750*

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

What Careers Are Available in Sports Management?

Job titles you may consider in the broad field of sports management include sporting agent or coach, parks or facilities manager, marketing or public relations director, and sales representative. Jobs may be available with professional sports teams and organizations; leisure, resort and recreational facilities; and educational institutions. You could also pursue a career with foundations and programs organizing statewide, national, and international sporting competitions.

What Type of Educational Programs Are Available?

Bachelor's degree programs in sports management provide a well-rounded approach to issues encountered in managing events, teams, individuals, and organizations. Courses in these programs may include coaching, administration and management, marketing and promotions, ethics, and sports psychology. Degree programs in recreational sports management focus specifically on issues involved in running recreational and leisure facilities and organizations. Internships with professional organizations are generally part of these programs and can be an important asset in your job search after college.

Graduate degree programs in sports management cover personnel, marketing, and financial issues in sports management. Joint graduate programs offering a master's degree in business administration and a master's degree in sports management provide in-depth coursework in sports and the law, human resource management, operations management, and issues encountered in upper-level management of professional sports organizations.

What Are the Salary Levels in the Field?

In its March 2017 College Salary Report, PayScale.com reported that the starting median salary for sports management undergraduate majors was $38,794, and the mid-career median salary was $50,000. As of January of 2017, the median salaries of those working in the sports agency industry were as follows: $40,000 for marketing managers; $35,000 for account executives; and $49,380 for executive assistants.

What Are Some Related Alternative Careers?

Related careers that also require a bachelor's degree include athletic trainers, recreational therapists, or market research therapists. Athletic trainers work with sports teams to prevent muscle injuries and to treat athletes with injuries to muscles and bones. Recreational therapists design and arrange programs for organizations needing help with clients who have injuries, disabilities or illnesses. Market research analysts use the most recent studies and data to determine what products a company may need, what people may like, and what they're willing to pay.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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