Exercise Science students preparing to become athletic trainers

Start Your Journey Towards Becoming an Athletic Trainer

Study the human body in motion and apply that knowledge to train people in their athletic endeavors.

Exercise Science: Pre-Athletic Training

Offered by: Exercise Science

Slippery Rock University's Bachelor’s in Exercise Science degree: Pre-Athletic Training major provides students with the foundation needed to pursue further graduate study and become athletic trainers. Our exercise science degree is recognized as one of the best accredited undergraduate programs in the country. Students gain extensive scientific knowledge of the human body in motion and incorporate technology into athletic training through practical experiences.

An exercise science degree often leads to a career in athletic training which involves supporting patients or clients to improve health outcomes through exercise. Athletic trainers work in a variety of settings and are often part of a multidisciplinary medical team. Usually, students who obtain a BS in Exercise Science will need graduate-level work to further their careers. However, for those who do not wish to continue on to a master’s degree, this program can also set you on the path towards a career in related health and wellness fields.

Why major in Pre-Athletic Training?

An Exercise Science degree with a focus on pre-athletic training is the perfect major for motivated go-getters who want to support others in their fitness and health endeavors. Our exercise science department emphasizes the importance of developing practical skills with actual people under faculty supervision. A number of student organizations provide camaraderie and networking opportunities including Exercise Science Society, Pre-Athletic Training Club, Resistance Training Workshop, and Rock Run Club.

An education at SRU sets students apart and trains them to succeed in athletic training or sports science careers. We provide excellent opportunities for student-faculty research, internships, and other types of career development throughout the major. Our program is accredited by the Commission of Accreditation of Allied Health Programs and endorsed by the National Strength and Conditioning Association.

What will you learn?

As an Exercise Science major, you will combine knowledge from anatomy, pathophysiology, and biomechanics for a comprehensive understanding of exercise as medicine. This will include courses in Nutrition and Exercise, Wellness Coaching, Medical Terminology, and Research Methods. Throughout the program you will learn: 

  • The fundamentals of kinesiology and human sciences
  • Aspects of human psychology related to motivation and leading exercise classes 
  • Skills to conduct fitness assessments and to adapt exercise for special populations

The BS in Exercise Science: Pre-Athletic Training program provides the prerequisite courses necessary to apply to SRU’s graduate program and/or pass national certification exams. You have the option to begin your Master of Science in Athletic Training early in our 3+2 program. In your third undergraduate year, you would apply to this bridge program which would replace your senior year coursework with graduate-level classes. 

Students also have the option to take the traditional route, which would include applying to the Master’s in Athletic Training program in their undergraduate senior year. This option requires students to take an additional two years of study (beyond their four years of undergraduate work) to complete their graduate degree.

What are your options?

Exercise Science Pre-Athletic Training SRU 3+2: Earn a Master of Science degree in Athletic Training in five years rather than six. In the first three years, you complete your exercise science major courses and pre-requisites for the SRU AT graduate program. During your third undergraduate year, you apply for admission into the SRU AT graduate program. If accepted, your first year in the SRU AT graduate program meets the remaining requirements for your undergraduate degree. If not accepted, you continue to complete your undergraduate degree and can reapply to the program.

Exercise Science Pre-Athletic Training (SRU Traditional): Complete the requirements for your exercise science major and the pre-requisites for the SRU AT graduate program and apply to the SRU AT graduate program in your senior year.

Careers In Athletic Training

Most students will continue onward for graduate study to become an athletic trainer. Career paths that can also begin with an exercise science degree include: 

  • fitness instructors
  • sports performance jobs
  • physical or occupational therapists 
  • physician assistants
  • research positions in public health
  • corporate wellness jobs

Earn your Exercise Science degree with a Pre-Athletic Training major at SRU!

Slippery Rock University’s Exercise Science: Pre-Athletic Training major puts students on the path towards a career helping others. Interested in learning more about this program?  Request more information today!