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Sports Then and Now

5 Industry Options for Breaking into a Sports Career

Posted on September 30, 2017 by Dixie Somers

sports careersAt some point in life, you’ll likely be forced to admit that your chances of becoming a pro athlete are slim to none. But that doesn’t mean you can’t find a successful career in sports. There are numerous related roles that will allow you to take part in your favorite sport or team and get paid for it. Here are some opportunities to focus on.

1. Social Media Director

Sports teams and organizations are aware of the potential for engaging and expanding their social media following, and like many businesses are increasingly looking for someone to represent them. If you have social media experience, writing, and digital marketing skills, the team you’re passionate about may need you.

2. Announcer

While the TV jobs usually go to established professionals and former athletes, sporting events at all levels usually require both on-site and radio announcers for broadcasting. You may be able to find a starting position as a high school announcer fairly easily. Moving up will typically require years of experience, training at broadcasting, and extensive knowledge of the game, along with a clear speaking voice and some authentic enthusiasm.

3. Sales Coordinator

All teams, even local high school teams, have an interest in earning extra money from merchandising or advertisers. You’ll work closely with team management, owners, and often the players themselves. You’re helping the team to improve and prosper in an important way. Typically, all it takes is an undergraduate degree in sales or marketing, some knowledge of sports management, and good people skills.

4. Coaching Assistants

Many assistant coaches become head coaches. Some coaches build great high school records into college or pro-level sports, but there is plenty of stress. You may prefer a supporting position like equipment manager or trainer, depending on your education. There are healthcare administration graduate programs that can qualify you for a sports medicine role even at college and professional levels.

5. Officiating

Though you represent the league and not individual teams, you still have the opportunity to get up close with the action. You also get to travel and are usually paid for your time. It may be easier to get started than you think. At a high school level, 85.7% of officials say they’re tempted to quit because of fan behavior. If you have significant knowledge of the rules, an objective attitude, and a thick skin, you’ll probably find an opportunity.

There are other sports-related positions. If you meet the qualifications and plan your career path, you may find a lifetime career in a sport you love.

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