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University of Leeds: A winning destination for Sports Science

Image courtesy of University of Leeds, Faculty of Biological Sciences

Whether you dream of becoming a coach to the elite athletes of the world, want to help get more local people involved in sport, or just want to understand the limits of the human body, a Sports Science degree could help you reach your goal.

Sports science degrees are aimed at people who want to take a behind-the-scenes look at sport, exercise and health and how the body works. While it could add a deeper level of interest and investment in your studies, it is not necessary to be good at sport to take a sports science degree.

Sports and exercise sciences are multidisciplinary in approach. They involve the theoretical application of scientific principles and techniques in the core disciplines below, with the aim of understanding their impact on sports performance, physical activity, health and rehabilitation.

They are attractive to those who want to pursue careers in clinical support (cardiac physiology and exercise referral), biomedical engineering, physiotherapy, occupational health, coaching, education and training, and providing technical expertise for major sports organisations.

Image courtesy of University of Leeds, Faculty of Biological Sciences

As the sports and health industries continue to expand, sports science has rapidly become a very popular degree course that can be used in a variety of different industries, making it a versatile choice for your future career prospects.

In today’s health-conscious world, sports scientists in their many professional forms – whether as a nutritionist, physiotherapist, or occupational health expert, for example – have a vital role to play in keeping not only sportspeople and athletes in peak condition, but the general public.

There is no better place to study sport science than in the UK, where there are expert courses and a national obsession with sport.

And one of the leaders in sports science, with an illustrious history in producing world-class athletes, is the University of Leeds.

The Faculty of Biological Sciences offers a range of undergraduate and postgraduate degrees within the life sciences, and is also home to one of the best Sport Science degrees in the country, and the world.

Image courtesy of University of Leeds, Faculty of Biological Sciences

Ranked in the top five in the UK for sports science, and top 50 in the world, the University of Leeds has a global reputation for excellence in the field. The university also received the highest award possible – a Gold rating – in the recent Teaching Excellence Framework review.

The independent panel, set up by the Department for Education, concluded that the University delivers “consistently outstanding teaching, learning and outcomes for its students, of the highest quality found in the UK.”

Leeds’ BSc Sport and Exercise Sciences delves into how the body and mind handle, and learn from, the demands of sport and exercise. With a clear focus on the core life science disciplines, students on the course examine the four core subjects of exercise physiology, biomechanics, motor control, and sport and exercise psychology. The degree also acts as an ideal springboard into a whole range of graduate careers unrelated to the sporting industry, largely due to its flexibility and the ability to tailor the degree to individual interests.

Leeds encourages students to capitalise on the depth and breadth of the University’s expertise through optional modules that challenge, complement and reinforce the value of their degree subject. The broadening of your studies not only benefits your education while at university, but equips you with the skills and versatility needed to succeed in today’s competitive and ever-changing world.

Image courtesy of University of Leeds, Faculty of Biological Sciences

This, combined with the excellent teaching standards and first-rate facilities, make graduates of the Faculty highly sought-after by employers. Beating out prestigious institutions such as Oxford, Cambridge, UCL and Durham, the Faculty is number one for employability with 96 percent of graduates employed or in further study six months after graduation.

An element of practical work experience also serves to boost your appeal to employers. Sport Science students have the option to get some real hands-on experience by applying to take a placement year with organisations across the public, private and voluntary sectors in the UK, or overseas. Past placements include exciting destinations like Southampton Football Club, Syngenta University of Western Australia, Leeds Rhinos Rugby League Club, and Johnson & Johnson.

As a Sport Science graduate you’ll also be in distinguished company with a wealth of famous sports stars littering the Faculty’s alumni. Hometown heroes Alistair and Jonny Brownlee, who took gold and silver in the triathlon competition at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, are both University of Leeds graduates, with Alistair studying Sports Science and Physiology.

The latest investment from the University has also been named in their honour. The new £5 million sports facility, the Brownlee Centre, is the UK’s first purpose-built triathlon training centre, combining a strength and conditioning training suite, physiotherapy, medical and other support services, to provide world-class facilities and enhance triathlon training throughout the region.

Image courtesy of University of Leeds, Faculty of Biological Sciences

This is just one example of the state-of-the-art facilities that the Faculty and the University has invested in to ensure students receive the best possible learning experience. As research-led teaching is fundamental to what the Faculty does, the Uni ensures its research labs are stocked with cutting-edge equipment designed to fulfil all tailor-made experiments devised by the students.

The fact that the Faculty is number one in the UK for ‘world-leading’ research in the area of sport and exercise sciences, according to the Research Excellence Framework, is testament to the quality resources and teaching on offer at Leeds.

If you’re a sports fan with a passion for science then embarking on a sports science degree at Leeds could be your first steps on the path to landing your dream job. Bringing together the global reputation, ‘world-leading’ research, “consistently outstanding teaching” and creative approach to independent learning, the Faculty of Biological Sciences at the University of Leeds makes for a winning place to tackle Sports Science.

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