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Course content

To be an excellent strength and conditioning coach requires a wide knowledge across several domains and a number of different skill sets. These include:
-An extensive “toolbox” of training exercise and interventions
-An understanding of movement and the ability to teach movement
-An understanding of how the body adapts to training and how to organise training to maximise desirable adaptations
-An ability to coach
-The ability to understand various sources of evidence (including scientific evidence) and use it to inform your practice

The MSc in Strength and Conditioning has been designed with these demands in mind, and aims to support students in developing as excellent strength and conditioning coaches.

Why St Mary's?

St Mary’s is widely recognised as an international leader in strength and conditioning education. We were the first UK institution to offer a BSc in strength and conditioning, and this MSc was the first part time, distance learning course in strength and conditioning in the UK. In recent years the university has invested £250,000 in a state of the art Performance Education Centre which is unrivalled as a facility for strength and conditioning education.

The staff at St Mary’s include both highly experienced coaches and expert sport scientists. In addition, our adjunct faculty is comprised of some of the most highly regarded practitioners in the world. All of the course material is designed for the strength and conditioning degree alone, which ensures that the practical relevance of the scientific evidence to the strength and conditioning coach is always fully explored.

The distance learning nature of this course has several advantages for professionals. Principal among these is the opportunity to combine study with practical work experience, thus allowing the translation of science into practice. In addition, you can organise your study around your own personal schedule. You can download lectures and watch them at times that suit you.

A Student View

Crofton Alexander (Wasps Strength and Conditioning Coach)
"Having already started a career in professional strength and conditioning with London Wasps prior to commencing the MSc, I was hoping that St Mary's MSc Strength and Conditioning programme would be stimulating, thought provoking and a challenge to my current philosophy.

"In all honesty, it did more than that and I can definitely say that this programme has raised my strength and conditioning practices to the next level."

Course Content

All modules have a credit value of 20, except for the research project which has a credit value of 60. With the exception of the Advanced Sport and Exercise Physiology module, all modules are assessed by a variety of types of coursework. To qualify for the diploma you need to accrue 120 credits. To qualify for the certificate you need to accrue 60 credits.

Modules will be offered according to staff availability and student uptake. Details of the core modules offered are presented below. Whilst every effort is made to accommodate student preferences we do require at least three students to register for a module to make it viable.

Module Information
› Practical Techniques in Strength and Conditioning
› Research Methods and Evidence Based Practice
› Biomechanics and Skill Acquisition in Strength and Conditioning
› Physiology of Training
› Programme Design, Planning and Monitoring
› Topical Issues in Strength and Conditioning Science
› Independent Project
› Study Skills

Please note: All information is correct at the time of publication. However, course content is regularly updated and this may result in some changes, which will be communicated to students before their programme begins.

Career Prospects

In today’s marketplace, employers are seeking to employ staff who are suitably qualified to undertake their roles and responsibilities. As such, there is an increased need for postgraduate programmes to be vocationally orientated, with an emphasis on training students in the theoretical underpinnings and relevant practical areas to work in the sport industry.

The MSc / PG Diploma programme focuses on disciplines pertinent to the field of strength and conditioning. These disciplines are developed to provide a programme that reflects the competencies required for professional accreditation with the UKSCA and NSCA.

It is necessary for applicants to understand that the most important quality valued by employers is experience. It is therefore a condition of entry to the course that students arrange experience opportunities in strength and conditioning prior to entry. For those using the course as CPD for another career pathway (e.g. physiotherapists) this condition does not apply.

Visit the Strength and Conditioning (Distance Learning) - MSc/PGDip/PGCert page on the St Mary’s University, Twickenham website for more details!

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