Sports scientists aim to improve people’s health, prevent disease and help people recover from illness. To this end, sports scientists compile individualized plans, assist in following them, and emphasize exercise as an important part of prevention and health promotion. Sports scientists work with both individuals and groups.

As a sports scientist, you could work in a variety of jobs, such as sports coaching, teaching in primary and secondary schools, training in fitness centers (personal training) or prevention work within companies and organizations.

Main tasks

• compiling and explaining exercise plans
• showing and explaining how exercise equipment works
• performing general health tests
• advice on diet and general health
• organizing events such as trips and sporting competitions

Competence requirements

Sports scientists need to have a general interest in sports and the ability to apply scientific methods in their work. Knowledge of the effects of exercise, training and diet on people’s health and physical ability is extremely important, as is an understanding of physiology. Athletes need to be able to work systematically and participate in teamwork. It is also important to have knowledge of first aid and be able to apply it if needed.


Sports and health sciences for a BS degree is available at the University of Iceland and there are also two master’s study programs at the university. Reykjavík University offers a study program for a BSc degree. To obtain teaching qualifications in primary or secondary schools, a master’s degree must be completed.

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