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UK Sports Science Courses

A Sports Science degree opens up career paths in a variety of areas, including biomechanics, nutrition and sport psychology

Sports science is the application of scientific knowledge to improve athletic performance. A sports science degree covers psychology, physiology, nutritional science and performance analysis, and UK universities offer courses incorporating the latest practice, theory and technology in medicine and training.

Sports science courses in the UK offer guest lectures from industry professionals, placements at professional teams, and the opportunity to attend special conferences. The demand for sports scientists has never been greater as many sports come to terms with a technological revolution that requires athletes to know their bodies inside out and be in constant peak condition.

Sports Science UK application

Having invented and drawn up the rules for Football, Rugby, Cricket and many others, the UK is uniquely positioned to teach the science behind the sport. The success of the English Premier League demonstrates the extraordinary appeal and brand recognition of sport in the UK, with competitive sports being a mainstay of British schools and a national obsession at all age levels.

Types of Sports Science Degrees

A sports science degree combines aspects of physiology, biomechanics, psychology, and nutrition to understand human performance in sporting activities, emphasizing the scientific principles behind exercise, training, and athletic development. Students study the body's response to physical activity, sports performance enhancement, injury prevention, and the application of scientific principles to optimize athlete well-being and performance.

Bachelor of Sports Science

A UK bachelor of sports science offers an extensive study of the science behind human movement, exercise, and physical performance. Students delve into physiology, biomechanics, nutrition, and sports psychology. This undergraduate degree equips students with a solid understanding of the scientific principles underpinning sports and physical activity. Practical elements, including laboratory work and field experience, are often integrated, allowing students to apply their knowledge in real-world contexts. 

  • Course Duration: 3-4 years
  • Course Fees: £10,000 - £25,000
  • Entry Requirements: A-levels: A*AA - AAA. IB: 38 - 37 (7,6,6 - 6,6,6 HL). BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate. 

Master’s of Sports Science

A master's in sports science in the UK provides a deeper and more specialised field exploration. Students focus on advanced topics like sports medicine, performance analysis, and research methodologies. A master’s often includes hands-on research projects and internships, enabling students to gain practical experience. A master's degree in sports science opens doors to roles in sports management, sports rehabilitation, and sports science research. 

  • Course Duration: 1-2 years
  • Course Fees: £12,000 - £35,000
  • Entry Requirements: A degree with an overall 2.2 in a subject relevant to Sport, Exercise, Psychology or Human Biology.

PhD in Sports Science

A PhD in sports science is the highest academic achievement in the field. Doctoral candidates engage in in-depth research and advanced studies, often focusing on specific areas of interest within sports science. This includes cutting-edge research in exercise physiology, sports nutrition, or sports psychology.

  • Duration: 3-5 years
  • Fees: £12,000 to £30,000
  • Entry Requirements: A bachelor's degree and a master's level qualification, which may include research degrees such as MRes and MPhil in a field relevant to sport and exercise science. This encompasses sports and exercise science, coaching, physiotherapy, medicine, sports education, sports management, and more.


University of East London 

The University of East London offers sports scholarships to support athletes. It has produced notable athletes, including Olympians. Scholarships include bursaries up to £6,000 per year (higher for exceptional candidates), physiotherapy, sports massage, strength and conditioning training, private access to facilities, and active recovery and yoga sessions.

Lancaster University Sports Science Scholarship

Prospective sports and exercise Science students at Lancaster Medical School can apply for a £9,000 Scholarship, equating to a £3,000 annual reduction in tuition fees for each year of the programme.

Loughborough Sports Scholarship

Loughborough University offers the International Sports Student Postgraduate Bursary, providing a generous 40% reduction in tuition fees, equivalent to approximately £8,000. This bursary is exclusively available to self-funding postgraduate students who excel in high-level sports competitions.

University of Manchester Sports Scholarship

The University of Manchester provides Sport Scholarships to high-achieving student-athletes, offering a personalised package to enhance their development and success. This support package, valued at over £9,000, includes individualised assistance, sports memberships, access to specialised facilities, and dedicated support. Additionally, athletes can receive up to £1,500 to cover training or competition expenses.

Jobs and Careers

A degree in sports science opens up a wide range of exciting career opportunities for graduates. With a strong foundation in the science of human movement, exercise, and physical fitness, sports science professionals play a crucial role in improving individuals' health and performance. Here are some of the prominent career paths for sports science graduates:

  • Coaches: Sports science graduates often pursue careers as coaches in various sports, helping athletes improve their skills, physical conditioning, and overall performance. 
  • Exercise Physiologists: These professionals work closely with individuals to develop personalised exercise programmes that improve fitness and address health issues. 
  • Personal Trainers: Personal trainers guide clients through fitness routines to help them achieve their health and fitness goals. They provide motivation, instruction, and support to individuals of all fitness levels.
  • Strength and Conditioning Coaches: These coaches focus on enhancing the strength and conditioning of athletes. They design and oversee training programme to improve performance, prevent injuries, and aid in rehabilitation. 
  • Membership Advisors: In fitness centres and gyms, membership advisors help individuals choose the right programmes and services to meet their fitness goals.
  • Local Government Sports Development Officers: These professionals work to promote sports and physical activity within communities. They organise events, programmes, and initiatives to encourage participation in sports and lead a healthy lifestyle. 


In the United Kingdom, the average salary for sports science graduates is approximately £25,614 per year, equivalent to £13.14 per hour. Entry-level positions typically offer salaries starting at £22,750 annually, while experienced professionals in the field can earn up to £40,000 per year.

Where can I study Sports Science in the UK?

To learn more about the best sports science courses in the UK, find details on the top ten ranking Sports Science universities in the Guardian University Guide 2024 below:

  1. University of Bath
  2. University of Glasgow
  3. Teesside University
  4. Loughborough University
  5. University of Strathclyde
  6. King's College London
  7. University of East Anglia
  8. University of Brighton
  9. University of Aberdeen
  10. Anglia Ruskin University

Study Sports Science in the UK

If you want to study sports science in the UK, arrange your free consultation today. Don't forget the Premium Service will guarantee you at least one offer from a UK university.

Sports Science Degree FAQ 

Which university is top ranking for sports in the UK?

According to the Guardian University Guide 2024, the University of Bath is ranked the best university in the UK for sports science.

What is the entry percentage required for sports science in the UK?

Typically, students need strong academic qualifications, such as A-levels or equivalent, and the specific entry requirements set by the university they're interested in.

What is the lowest IELTS Score for sports in the UK?

A minimum IELTS score is often around 6.0 to 6.5 for undergraduate and postgraduate programmes.

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