Why did you choose to study in the sport and leisure field?
I always wanted to become a physiotherapist and knew that this was a pathway into the career. I did not pursue physio in the end, as I found a decent job in the sports science field. I always enjoyed sports when I was younger and knew I wanted to do something like this — hands-on but also theory based.
What was the best thing about your course?
The course involved a lot of lab testing, which I really enjoyed, especially when we were able to perform tests used to measure the performance of elite athletes on each other. My favourite was the VO2 max test, which calculates the amount of oxygen used by athletes as they perform. As far as university goes, the best thing would definitely have to be the social life and meeting new people, including the lunchtime social events, playing footy, lazing around on the grass, hanging out with friends before and after classes, and the parties and pub crawls.
What was the worst thing about your course?
Some subjects focused on the cultural side of sport and involved quite a bit of essay writing and theoretical study, which is something that I didn’t expect when I applied for the course. Another thing would have to be those late nights finishing up assignments or studying, or those damn prac reports. And I’m sure everyone who has been to uni has had one of those classmates who didn’t shut up during lectures — but now that I look back they were rather entertaining.
Have you found work in your field?
Yes, I found a great job working for an exercise physiology company that specialises in musculoskeletal rehabilitation, injury management and chronic disease management. I will admit it was very had to find work straight out of uni — I had to trial a few interviews before I got the hang of it and found a job. Students should be aware that the most appealing jobs, such as working with elite athletes, can be hard to find and break into.
What advice would you give to students considering studying sport and leisure?
If I were to do things over I would make sure I got my foot in the door straight away. When I say this, I mean getting a job in the field from the get go — even while you’re studying. There is so much to be learnt in the field that cannot be taught at university. And you will be surprised how these random skills come together to help you find a job when you graduate. Lastly, try to participate in everything at uni — if you get the chance to study abroad, take it. I passed on this and regretted it.