The southwestern and sixth largest American state of Arizona is a good place to study and practice sports psychology. Arizona has several professional sports teams including those in football, baseball, basketball, ice-hockey and soccer. The variety of sports played at a competitive level in Arizona suggest that practicing in this particular state could prove to be lucrative and prosperous for sports psychologists.
Sport psychology combines knowledge from disciplines in psychology, biomechanics, physiology and kinesiology. The field is concerned with the relationship between physical factors, psychological factors and athletic performance. It studies the psychological effects of athletic competition on individuals, teams and performance. As a sports psychologist one helps athletes, coaches and parents deal with aspects such as career transitions, team building, physical setbacks and rehabilitation.
As with most fields of science, a great deal of emphasis is given to academic accomplishments so you can expect the same if you want to become a sports psychologist. An undergraduate degree in psychology or another relevant subject followed by a Masters or PhD in sports psychology may lead to a promising profession in sports psychology.
Sports Psychology Training Programs
Argosy University, Phoenix
The programs offered by Argosy University offer a blend of tools to add value to a student’s professional and personal achievement. The MA (Master of Arts) In Sport-Exercise Psychology is a specialized degree program to help students prepare for the industry demands of a capable sports psychologist.
One of the requirements to gain admission into this program is to have a bachelor’s degree from a recognized institute with at least a CGPA of 2.7. An English language proficiency test is needed for students who do not have English as their primary language. Students can make use of financial aid options such as the Federal Direct Loan, Federal Pell Grant and various payment plans.
John F. Kennedy University
An online Exercise and Sport Performance Certificate at the graduate level is offered by the John F. Kennedy University. This program is designed to give budding sports psychologists the edge they need to excel in the industry. This graduate certificate has a total of 20 units and is structured to be completed within a year.
Related Training Programs
Eastern Arizona College
The Eastern Arizona College offers an Associate of Arts degree in Psychology to students interested in creating a base in general psychology. The program includes coursework that is necessary for developing a strong foundation in general psychology which students can then be used for a master’s degree in sports psychology.
The college offers a course in sport psychology that is worth 3 credits and exposes students to concepts such as sports medicine, behavioral development, coaching, exercise psychology, and so on. Financially challenged students have multiple option for financial aid such as scholarships, grants and loans.
Arizona State University
The Arizona State University offers interested students a contemporary MS in Applied Psychology. This is essentially a 2 year program and offers students theoretical and practical experiences in diverse settings. The degree covers a number of foundational topics with applications in areas such as sports psychology.
To get into this graduate degree program students must have earned a bachelor’s in psychology or related field while holding a minimum CGPA of 3.0 points. Having an undergraduate course in statistics as well as official GRE exam results are also requirements to enter this program. To successfully complete this program students must fulfill 30 credit hours with usually a thesis.
Career Opportunities in Arizona
Due to the sheer number of sports teams, franchises and sporting events, team managers and multinationals are eager to keep their athletes mentally and physically fit for maximum performance during competitive events. Even academic institutes have their own sports teams that compete at the district level and attract quite the crowd. Therefore work opportunities may be far ranging and quite favorable.
Salary and Employment Outlook in Arizona
The earning potential of a sports psychologist is largely dependent on their market experience. According to Comparably.com the average annual salary of a sports psychologist, as of October 2018, in Arizona is $97,164.
The demand for qualified and experienced sports and exercise psychologists is likely to stay high in Arizona. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment of psychologists will grow by 11% during the period of 2016 to 2026. This translates to roughly 18,700 new jobs for psychologists, including sports psychologists.