A young woman works out in the fitness center.

Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Kinesiology Overview

If you are looking for a reputable and innovative college to fuel your passion for exercise and movement, SMWC is the place for you. Our kinesiology degree program is designed for individuals interested in human movement to assume roles in a variety of settings, including hospitals, nonprofit organizations, government agencies, doctors’ offices, private businesses and school settings. If you want to create an entirely made-for-you degree, pair a kinesiology degree with a double major or minor in things like sport management, teaching, psychology, or Spanish to create more interesting career options. With your professional advisors helping you along the way, you can mix and match majors and minors to get the perfect degree tailored to you and your career aspirations. Plus, you’ll graduate with a strong foundation in liberal arts, providing you with a well-rounded education.

In our small, open classrooms, you’ll receive personalized interaction with your experienced faculty. Our courses are designed to help you acquire specific knowledge, communicate effectively, apply critical thinking, provide services, display leadership and advocacy and demonstrate professionalism. Our approach is effective tin teachingthe foundational principles of kinesiology, such as anatomy, physiology, biomechanics, psychology and motor learning. You will choose from one of three concentrations: exercise science, health science or recreation science.


What is kinesiology?
Kinesiology is the study of mechanics and anatomy in relation to human movement. A bachelor’s degree in kinesiology from Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College addresses the physiological and mechanical systems of the body. A primary focus is the treatment of injuries and the prevention of disease or injury, and a focus on health and wellness. SMWC takes kinesiology a step further with our concentrations in exercise science, health science and recreation science.

Why get a degree in kinesiology?
A bachelor’s degree in kinesiology can give you many options upon graduation. You will learn about the relaxation of the body, correcting alignment and posture, increasing muscle strength, exercise training and more. As medicine starts to understand more about how the kinesiology of the body affects overall health, kinesiology’s importance in the medical field continues to grow. Our kinesiology program will give you the hands-on experience and knowledge you need to excel in your career. Also, we overlay our curriculum with a strong leadership component. So, you aren’t just learning about kinesiology; you’re learning to be a leader in the field.

What can you do with a degree in kinesiology?
If you have a passion for exercise, exercise science, the human body and health and wellness, a degree in kinesiology will get you to a career you love. You can continue your education with graduate studies or enter right into the workplace upon graduation. Graduates emerge prepared to pursue a variety of careers:

  • Personal health coach
  • Health educator
  • Life coach
  • Fitness trainer/instructor
  • Activity/program instructor
  • Team leader
  • Physical education teacher
  • Sports coordinator
  • Athletic director
  • Wellness advisor
  • Addiction and rehabilitation worker

With additional graduate education, students can pursue careers such as:

  • College professor
  • Occupational therapist
  • Physical therapist
  • Chiropractor

Check out our blog, 8 careers you can have with a kinesiology degree

What is the average annual salary of someone with a kinesiology degree?
The Bureau of Labor Statistics indicates that overall employment of kinesiology-related personnel is projected to grow faster than average for all occupations. This growth will be driven by efforts to improve health outcomes and reduce healthcare costs by teaching people healthy behaviors and explaining how to use available healthcare services. As you look at starting salaries, keep in mind that the cost of living and opportunities to move with a career should also factor into your decision. A person with a kinesiology degree will average $43,075, according to CareerExplorer.com.

What support and resources are provided at SMWC?
The Learning Resource Center (LRC) provides exceptional, personalized learning resource services to encourage student success. The LRC offers help with a range of academic support services, including a writing center, tutoring, college success courses and more.

Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College is routinely ranked by US News and World Report among the Best Regional Universities in the Midwest and the Best Value Schools. Our departments are also routinely ranked for their individual degree programs.
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