19 August, 2021 | Posted by Cian Fahey

What is a Sports Science Course?

sports science course

Sports across the world have embraced analytics and advanced sports science to gain an edge in competition.

Whether it’s a track sprinter trying to maximize his output to shave off the final milliseconds or a soccer team hoping to manage injuries over the course of a season, sports science is playing a prevalent role in every elite athlete’s career.

Becoming a sports scientist is now more straightforward than ever before. Where once it was about falling into the right opportunity at the right time and maybe creating a role that didn’t previously exist, now teams are actively seeking out sports scientists. The pipeline comes through a sports science degree in college.

Portobello Institute’s BSc (Hons) Sports Science and Performance Analysis degree is a three-year course that sets students up to immediately apply their learnings in an elite sporting environment upon graduation.

In this course, students study:

Human Anatomy and Biomechanics

Human anatomy and biomechanics are at the foundation of sports science. The principal focus in anatomy is the musculoskeletal system, movement analysis and the isolation of specific muscle groups. The principle focus in biomechanics is on the basic anthropometry and kinematics of the human body.

Human Physiology and Training Principles

This module introduces students to exercise-related physiology, the sub-discipline of sport and exercise science. It provides familiarity with physiology, biochemistry and cell biology.

Foundation of Sports Psychology and Coaching

This module will primarily develop an understanding of the impact that psychological states have on both performance and participation, as well as the most effective way to develop a sound coaching/teaching knowledge base and pedagogy. In addition, this module focuses on the sociology of sport and exercise, referring to the sociological value of sport.

Sports Research Skills

This module introduces students to the study of sport in higher education as well as develops students’ life-long skills in organisation and the application of knowledge. It enhances the student’s planning, preparation, academic writing styles, referencing, resourcing and development for academia.

It will also introduce students to methods of data analysis using computer software, which enables students to apply statistical techniques to data.

Analysis for Team and Individual Sports

Students learn the theoretical and practical knowledge for conducting needs analysis for individual and team sports, designing and implementing analysis for performance and related parameters in team and individual sports. The module focuses on evaluating different parameters of performance from technical, tactical, physiological, biomechanical and injury risk perspectives.

Sports and Exercise Physiology

This module introduces students to the responses of tissues and organs to acute and chronic exercise training.

Psychological Factors in Sporting Teams and Individuals

This module elaborates on the key theories in sports psychology, covering a wide range of sport psychology topics and the mental skills used within those topics. Students will understand the key psychological theories which underpin sporting performance and participation itself.

Applied Principles of Strength and Conditioning

This module focuses on the application of needs analyses, evidence-based programme design, technical coaching and the evaluation of effectiveness for strength and conditioning.

Biomechanics of Human Movement

This module focuses on understanding the principles of human movement in terms of anatomy and biomechanics.

Sports Science Research Methods

In this module, students will consider and carry out the preparation necessary for a scientific dissertation proposal.

Advanced Analysis for Sports Performance

In this module, students focus on the development of transferable skills, critical thinking and proficiency in data analysis and assimilation.

Sports Psychology and the Elite Athlete

This module explores contemporary theory in sport psychology and its relevance to the competitive sporting environment. It aims to introduce students to the key real-life psychological demands associated with sports performance, in conjunction with coping mechanisms and solutions used to deal with those demands.

Advanced Biomechanics

This module focuses on motion capture and movement analysis backed up by other biomechanical analysis techniques including electromyography and the use of force platforms.

In the final year of the course, students will complete a dissertation and work placement in the area of sports performance analysis.

After graduating, students with the BSc degree will be eligible to apply for the MSc Sports Performance Analysis degree.

Portobello Institute values the one in everyone and understands that education is only a part of your life. We don’t want to take up all of your time and create stress for you. You should go to college to improve your life outside of college and after college.

We are training the sports professionals of the future. If you would like to work in sports in a professional capacity, you can find a course that will provide you with the requisite education to do so.

If you'd like to read more about the sports degrees and qualifications we carry, you can visit the department page here.

If you are interested in any of our sports courses or have any questions you can book a consultation call with our expert sports advisor Sharde Sebastian here, email sharde.sebastian@portobelloinstitute.com or call 01 892 0029. 

Featured in this article:
Johanna Shaw has a 2:1 in BSc (Hons) in Sports and Exercise Science from Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh. She completed an MPhil Studentship in Physical Activity for Health alongside an Exercise Development role. She then went onto a Tackling Inactivity in Students role funded by Sport England within a Further Education College in London before moving back to Dublin to Portobello Institute.

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