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The Job of a Physical Education Instructor

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A career in physical education would be very interesting for people who are passionate about physical fitness. PE instructors are required in most schools and colleges and hence with the right qualification and attitude, you can do well in this career stream. Regardless of the place of work, they should be able to influence people with their skills and dedication by utilizing their knowledge in sports effectively.

Job Responsibilities

The job of an instructor of physical training includes instructing students about physical education in educational institutions. The instructor has to properly organize and conduct the physical education in order to promote the development of a student's social skills along with physical attributes.

They have to teach the students' team and individual sports wherein they become familiar with sports techniques that are commonly in use. The physical capabilities of all the students should be taken into consideration in organizing the education program. They should also organize, lead, instruct and refer outdoor and indoor games. These can include baseball, volleyball, football and basketball. Instruction should be provided to students regarding initial and advanced gymnastics, calisthenics and or the corrective exercises.

The complexity of a particular exercise should be given the required importance to properly organize them. If there is a need, corrections can be done as required along with the prescribed movements. To carry out these effectively, an instructor should have a thorough knowledge on physiology, corrective techniques and all the aspects of sports. An instructor should demonstrate how to use the training apparatus and gymnastics. These can be weights and trampolines. They have to confer with parents, students and the counselors for resolving problems of students. The materials and equipments used in the physical education programs for children should be decided by the instructor. A large number of physical education trainers take specialization in a specific sport like: swimming, tennis or basketball. He or she should be comfortable with teaching disabled students.


Academic: It is mandatory for the physical education instructors to have an undergraduate degree in Physical Education. Besides this they should obtain a certificate that enables them to work as an instructor in the state where they reside. The guidelines for obtaining this certification are different at various places. Students with interest in physical education can look forward to taking up other courses like: exercise planning, nutrition, sports medicine and psychology. The degree obtained should be in physical education. Make sure that you complete your degree from a reputed institution, so that you can be assured of a good employment.

Skill Sets: The instructors should posses' excellent skills in verbal communication with the ability to influence and motivate people. They should have the ability to remain calm even during the most embarrassing situations. They should be patient besides having good knowledge of exercise, physical fitness and sports.

Training: Besides completing education, a person interested in a career as physical education instructor can get additional training in kinesiology concepts, recreation leadership, sports theory, therapeutic exercises and athletic training.

Prior experience: Like in any other field, experienced candidates can look forward to several areas of physical education training including even the director and managerial positions of athletic clubs or activity camps and agencies.

Employment Outlook

Career Prospects: It is expected that there would be a growth rate of approximately twelve percent as far as the jobs in physical education sector are considered. In lower-income urban areas, plenty of work is expected. This is applicable to rural areas which are somewhat isolated from the town and cities. There can be a shortage in the number of candidates who are aptly qualified for such jobs in the near future. Hence students should grab the situation and prepare themselves with new talents. Besides, there are lots of areas where qualified physical education instructors can find employment apart from teaching jobs. So, physical education employment is a good option to consider.

Salaries: The annual income of instructors of physical education varies depending on the particular place. The annual median salary of a physical education instructor is found to be between $43,000 and $49,000.

The different areas in which a professional physical education teacher can work include: Activity Specializing, Adaptive Specialist of Special Education, Manager of Athletic Clubs, Sales of Athletic equipments, Athletic Trainer, Coach, Camp Director, Correctional Officer, Medical Emergency Technician, Staff Member of Health Clubs, Massage Therapist, Athletic Manager, Physical Therapist, Professional Athlete, Recreational Director, Recreational Leader, Recruiter, Sports Official, Owner of Sports Shop, Operator in a Sports Shop, Sports Announcer, Sports Writer, Stunt Performer and Fire Fighter besides working as the physical training instructor /teacher in schools and colleges.
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