If you’re fascinated by the mechanics of the human body and staying physically fit sounds just about right, a career in kinesiology could be the ideal choice for you. Kinesiology is the study of the science behind human movement and involves using physical exercises to improve physical and mental well-being. When it comes to how lucrative a career in kinesiology is, some of the highest paying kinesiology jobs pay as high as $150,000 a year.
Notable high paying kinesiology jobs include physical therapist, occupational therapist, chiropractor, exercise physiologist, and sports consultant. In this article, we highlight 13 kinesiology jobs that pay well in 2021.
Highest Paying Kinesiology Jobs (2021)
Here we look at the high paying jobs for kinesiology majors. Most of these jobs pay between $50,000 and $150,000 a year.
1. Physical Therapist
Physical therapists work with patients in rehabilitation centers and hospitals to solve mobility challenges resulting from chronic conditions or to improve mobility after surgeries. They use a variety of special equipment, exercises, and massage therapy to help patients achieve mobility independence with as minimum pain as possible.
Physical therapists can also provide preventive care and teach patients the use of special techniques to aid in their healing process. The median annual salary of physical therapists is $91,010 and the highest earners receive more than $126,780 a year, which sees it top our list of the highest paying kinesiology jobs in the U.S.
2. Occupational Therapist
Occupational therapists work with patients with mobility issues to help maintain mobility and flexibility necessary to the daily living and workplace demands. They deal with a multitude of both physical and mental conditions, including but not limited to broken bones and PTSD.
Occupational therapists also work with patients suffering from permanent disability issues, helping them to adapt as much as possible while nurturing an independent lifestyle. The median annual salary of an occupational therapist is $86,280 and the highest earners receive more than $122,670 a year.
Chiropractors assess, treat, and care for patients by creating adjustments in the spine and the musculoskeletal system. They may also help treat sacral or pelvic misalignment issues and educate patients on ways to take care of their bodies.
Chiropractors use a range of methods and therapies to diagnose and treat health conditions such as back pains, sciatica, arthritis pain, headaches, and auto accident injuries. The median annual salary for chiropractors is $70,720 and the top earners make as high as $137,950 a year.
4. University Professor
If teaching feels like a calling to you then becoming a university professor might be the perfect career path to follow. Apart from getting one of the highest paying kinesiology jobs in the world, you get to nurture expert kinesiologists for the future.
According to ZipRecruiter, university professors’ mean annual salary is $70,427 with the highest earners receiving more than $178,000 a year.
5. Occupational Therapy Assistants
The roles of occupational therapy assistants include providing occupational therapy treatments and procedures to patients, helping develop patient treatment plans, and carrying out routine functions such as directing activity programs and documenting the treatment progress.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual salary of occupational therapy assistants is $62,940 and the top-paid professionals earn more than $84,090 a year.
6. Athletic Director
Athletic directors oversee athletic programs and manage personnel, logistics, and budgets that go into athletic training programs and competitions. They also ensure training facilities are in good condition to ensure the safety of the athletes and help them achieve athletic excellence.
Other roles of athletic directors include promoting their teams and individual players, planning travel to athletic competitions, managing staff members, ensuring their athletic programs follow all regulations, and resolving conflicts between players and/or staff members. The mean annual salary of athletic directors is $62,611 in the United States.
7. Sports Consultant
Sports consultants work closely with athletic directors and athletes to offer advice on different trends in sports. Their roles include developing strategies to broker sports deals, helping athletes get better sports deals, doing research, and gathering data to help athletes and teams make informed decisions.
Being one of the highest paying kinesiology jobs in the U.S., sports consultants in the United States enjoy an average annual salary of $62,189. The highest earners receive more than $147,000 a year.
8. Physical Therapist Assistants
As a physical therapist assistant, you will help physical therapists in providing physical therapy treatments to patients. Your duties may include assisting in the development of treatment plans, modifying treatments in accordance with patient status, and documenting treatment progress.
Being a physical therapist assistant is one of the most fulfilling and enriching careers. There’s something special about helping others seeing a patient start making those baby steps will put a smile on your face. The median annual wage of a physical therapist assistant is $59,770 and the highest earners receive at least $82,470 a year.
Here is a short clip on the physical therapist assistant career. Video Courtesy: Concorde Career Colleges.
9. Exercise Physiologist
Exercise physiologists work with athletes to create appropriate fitness routines that will help improve their cardiorespiratory function, muscular strength, muscular endurance, and flexibility. They also help athletes recover from injuries and prepare them for full fitness.
They may also design custom fitness routines and recovery plans for athletes prone to injuries and those suffering from subsequent similar injuries. The median annual salary for an exercise physiologist is $50,280 and the top earners receive as high as $78,170 a year.
10. Athletic Trainer/Coach
Athletic trainers or coaches help nurture athletic skills to help athletes compete at the highest levels of sports. They teach techniques, organize training sessions, prepare for competitions, provide guidance, arrange scouting missions, and monitor competing teams.
This is one of the high paying kinesiology jobs and the Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates athletic trainers’ median annual salary to be $49,860. The highest earners in this profession receive more than $75,810 a year.
11. Fitness Club Manager
Fitness club managers also called gym managers, oversee the daily operations of a training center or gym. Some of their duties include coordinating activities, managing instructors and trainers, creating training schedules, and ensuring all their clients are satisfied.
Additionally, fitness club managers ensure the training facilities they oversee comply with all appropriate regulations. Their average annual salary is $49,087 and the top earners earn more than $67,000 a year.
12. Physical Education Teacher
Physical education teachers develop curriculums and instruct students on ways to maintain physical fitness and how to stay healthy. They teach team sports, motivate students to remain healthy, educate them on nutrition basics, evaluate & grade their performance, and communicate student progress to parents or guardians.
According to PayScale, the average annual salary of physical education teachers is $46,111 and the top earners receive more than $73,000 a year.
13. Fitness Trainer/Coach
As a fitness trainer, you will work with clients, individuals or groups, to establish and achieve fitness goals. You will monitor their progress as you help them lift weights, stretch, and complete other physical exercises. Some fitness trainers or coaches focus on training athletes in preparation for athletic competitions.
Other roles of fitness trainers include developing exercise routines and instructing individuals or groups of clients at a time. The median salary for fitness trainers or coaches is $40,510, but the highest-paid professionals receive more than $76,550 a year.
Highest Paying Kinesiology Jobs
We have highlighted 13 of the highest paying kinesiology jobs in the United States. If you’re into fitness and are exploring career options in this field then one of the jobs will excite you. It’s vital to note that some of these jobs require extensive education and you should be ready for that. You can also check these low-stress jobs that pay well in 2021 if you want to make money without feeling depressed.