Chris Dann: Sporting Footsteps

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Have you ever wondered what careers are out there for graduates and non-graduates who have a keen interest in sport? Sport Solent offers a wide range of roles in different business areas:

• Coaching and fitness instruction
• Administration and support
• Sports development
• Placement and volunteer work
• Leisure management
• Health and well-being promotion

In this feature we talk to Sport Solent staff members and find out what their ‘Sporting Footsteps’ were enabling them to get to their much enjoyed job roles that they are in today.

This month we interview Chris Dann, Fitness Instructor based at Sports Centre St Mary’s and 3rd year studying Fitness Management and Personal Training at Southampton Solent University.

What skills are you using the most?

I find that having strong communication skills is proving invaluable, that combined with good knowledge of fitness and good time keeping are proving to be incredibly useful.

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Have you always wanted to work in the sport and leisure industry, if so why?

The idea of an office job couldn’t be more boring to me, I have always been interested in team sports, playing rugby as I grew up, but, it was during college that I discovered fitness instructing and I’m glad I did.

Whats has your academic and professional career been so far and where do you foresee it taking you?

I studied Physical Education at GCSE level among other subjects, moving onto to take Level 3 Extended National Diploma in Exercise Sport Science at Queen Mary’s College in Basingtoke passing with triple distinction, from there I moved to Southampton to study Fitness Management and Personal Training BA(Hons) at Southampton Solent University of which I’m currently moving into my third year of. I have aspiration of joining the Royal Marine Commandos as an Officer, later specializing in physical training; with hopes of using this knowledge to one day own my own training facility… but we’ll see.

What is your sport?

I enjoy a lot of sports but, having played it growing up it has to be rugby! I love the controlled aggression and fast pace

What have you enjoyed working in the sport and leisure industry so far?

Its an incredible social career, the entire point of it is to build up professional relationships and others motivation for fitness so they can meet their goals.

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What would your advice be for others wanting to start a career in sport?

In this industry qualifications are everything, get relevant qualification to the field you want to work in as soon as possible from a reputable brand. Qualifications = Knowledge, Knowledge = Jobs, Jobs = Experience, Experience = Bigger and Better Opportunities!

What do you think of the working opportunities available for students students at Sport Solent and Southampton Solent University?

The University is incredibly helpful when it comes to helping students secure work experience and other relevant opportunities. I secured my job at Sports Centre St Mary’s via a work placement scheme associated with my course.

What is the best advice you have ever heard?

“Find a job you love and you’ll never work a day in your life.”



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