The science of kinesiology pertains to the study of movement and how physical fitness, work and leisure activities affect the body, according to the National Academy of Kinesiology. Kinesiology is not a career in itself but encompasses a number of occupations, including massage and physical therapy, fitness instruction and coaching. Collective average salaries for kinesiologists vary, depending on their occupations and geographic locations.
Overall Salary of $58,000
All kinesiologists earned an average salary of $58,000 as of 2014, according to Indeed. Physical therapists, who are required to have doctoral degrees in physical therapy, help patients overcome pain and injuries by guiding them through stretching and strength-building exercises and treating them with heat and ice therapy. Massage therapists manipulate joints and muscles to relieve clients’ tightness and stress, while fitness trainers create exercise routines for clients to lose weight or add muscle.
Earn More in South and Northeast
In 2014, kinesiologists earned more on average in the South and the Northeast regions, Indeed reported. They made $51,000 on average in Louisiana and $73,000 in Washington, D.C., which were the lowest and highest salaries in the South. In the Northeast, New York employers paid kinesiologists the most at $71,000, while those in Maine averaged $52,000.
Aching Boomers Need Therapy
Demand for physical therapists is expected to far outpace the other kinesiology occupations with a 36 percent increase in jobs from 2012 to 2022, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Employment for massage therapists will increase by 23 percent during the same decade. The large population of aging baby boomers, requiring more therapy for various ailments, will help spur job growth for physical therapists and massage therapists. Meanwhile, jobs for fitness trainers are estimated to grow by 13 percent, the BLS reported.