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Best Online Colleges for Exercise Science

Physical fitness and nutrition are integral parts of maintaining your health, recovering after an injury, or reaching your full athletic potential. If you’re someone who is passionate about any of these areas, or anything in the scope of wellness, you may know that a degree in exercise science, otherwise known as kinesiology, is the way to secure yourself a career in the field. Here are some of the best online colleges for kinesiology degrees.

University of Wyoming

One of the best exercise science degrees that you can earn online is the University of Wyoming's Master of Science in Kinesiology and Health. This is a program that is designed to prepare graduates for either doctorate study or a career in education. You must be a licensed teacher to apply for this program.

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George Washington University

George Washington University offers an online Master of Science in Exercise Science. There are synchronous and asynchronous components to the program, which gives students a unique blend of rigor and flexibility while they study.

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University of South Dakota

If you would like to earn a Master of Arts in Kinesiology and Sport Management, you can do so online at the University of South Dakota. There are 30 credits in this program, which can be earned entirely online and in a self-paced format. This is a non-thesis program that you can complete in just twelve months.

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Louisiana State University

Louisiana State University has a Master of Science in Kinesiology that focuses on Health Promotion and Sport Performance that students can earn online. Risk prevention, healthy behavior, and social-ecological influences on health are some of the topics you'll cover.

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American Public University System

American Public University is widely known for its vast selection of online degree programs. One such program is the Master of Science in Sports and Health Sciences. There are start dates every month and two accelerated course formats that let you choose how aggressively you'd like to pursue your degree. Additional certificates can be earned along with your degree.

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Sam Houston State University

Sam Houston State University is home to an online Master of Science in Kinesiology with a concentration in Sport and Human Performance. This degree is one of the most affordable of its kind and offers multiple start dates throughout the year. Students have the ability to customize their degree with electives.

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Liberty University

Liberty University has an online Master of Science in Exercise Science that is one of the most affordable in the country. You can graduate in just a year and a half thanks to the accelerated course formats, and you'll cover topics like nutrition, biomechanics, and more. Specializations are offered in multiple areas, including Nutrition/Wellness, and Fitness/Performance.

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University of Southern Mississippi

At the University of Southern Mississippi, students can earn their Master of Science in Kinesiology with a major in Sport Coaching/Education completely online. You have the choice of a thesis or non-thesis option, and you'll also learn about other topics like nutrition, and gain practicum experience.

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Concordia University - Saint Paul

Concordia University - Saint Paul has an online Master of Science in Exercise Science. This is an accelerated degree program that has awesome study abroad opportunities for distance learners. You can complete the ten required courses in just five and a half semesters.

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California University of Pennsylvania

California University of Pennsylvania offers an online Master of Science in Exercise Science with the most diverse selection of concentration areas on this list. You can focus your studies on sport psychology, wellness coaching, rehabilitation, and several others! You can expect to graduate in anywhere from 12 to 18 months.

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Ask the Experts: Best Online Colleges for Exercise Science

Mylea Charvat, Ph.D.

Neuroscientist & Coach at Savonix

Mylea has authored several peer review publications in mental health & neuroimaging. She completed her fellowship in clinical neuroscience at Stanford & has been a lecturer at Stanford where she is currently a faculty mentor with the Knight-Hennessey Scholars program. She has also taught at The University of San Francisco & San Francisco State University. She is a monthly contributor with Psychology Today, has written for Tech Crunch & Stat News & appeared as a subject matter expert at many conferences including The Atlantic Council, the NIH & NIA & with the Duke Leadership Program.

Why is exercise important for the brain?

It turns out that while all exercise is good, water-based sports deliver a little extra kick for our health. One study suggests that water immersion, up to heart level, has cardiovascular benefits contributing to more blood flow to the brain. Exercise leads to angiogenesis, synaptogenesis, and neurogenesis.

Jace Fairbairn

Corporate Wellness Specialist at Nib

Jace is a corporate wellness professional with more than 14 years experience in my field. I am passionate about health and wellbeing, developing corporate wellness initiatives, driving behaviour change, increasing participation and engagement, program management, and delivering training. I have worked with organizations including NIB, RLSNSW, Qantas, Bupa, Bicycle Network, Peak Health Management, Calastica Health and Wellbeing, Health @ work, Ford Health and PCYC.

What can you do with an exercise science degree?

Exercise Science degrees are an interesting one, on one hand they can potentially lead into a huge number of careers so there is a large amount of potential career paths but on the flip side the lack of a definitive outcome can also be a drawback as there are VERY few, if any positions advertised for an Exercise Scientist.