Parisa Pell, BSc Sports Coaching and AnalysisParisa tells us about how her degree prepared her for her role now as a personal trainer and sports massage therapist.
Why did you chose to study your course and why LSBU?
I was interested in studying Strength & Conditioning (S&C) at university, but I didn’t want to do a pure S&C degree, LSBU integrated S&C modules into their Sport Coaching & Analysis degree, which is why I wanted to study on the programme here
What do you enjoy most about studying your course?
I love that everyone is really friendly and welcoming, and the lecturers are really helpful. The staff always provided external opportunities for us such as the opportunity to do our level 2 fitness instructor qualification, so that when we graduated we were able to leave with more than just a degree.
What is your favourite module and why?
My favourite modules were strength & conditioning and nutrition. I had a big interest in working in the fitness industry when I started at university, so these two modules I really enjoyed as they related to what I was looking to do when I graduated.
Have you experienced any specific trips, guest speakers or events connected to your course that you’ve enjoyed?
The lecturers arranged for quite a few people to come in and talk to us over the three years - we had an S&C coach for a martial arts team who he coached to compete in the Olympics; it was really great to hear from inspirational guest speakers.
In my second year, I had the opportunity to study abroad in Florida, it was an incredible experience and I have many fond memories of my time out there. I made some great friends who became like a second family and I’ve been out to visit them many times since I returned.
Do you think studying in central London is beneficial and gives you access to networking opportunities and work placements?
Yes 100%! During my 3 years at uni I worked part-time jobs throughout - at one point I was even working three jobs, as the jobs were accessible and I wanted as much experience as I could get before graduating
What are your career aspirations and how is your course providing you with the skills and experience to reach your goals?
I knew when I started my degree that I wanted to work in the fitness industry - I’m now a self-employed Personal trainer & Sports Massage Therapist working in a female only gym in East London and I love it there! The course at LSBU meant that I had that extra edge in my knowledge over a standard Personal Training qualification. It taught me to question methods and use scientific research to make sure I use the most appropriate method and to support the choices that I make when writing programmes. I was able to tailor my dissertation to the field that I was specialising in which meant I was able to apply it to my every day work.
Did you attend any events on campus before applying or starting at the university?
Yes, I attended an offer holder event which was awesome - they showed me around the sports labs (which are epic!) and I knew straight away that I’d made the right choice to study at LSBU
What advice would you give to new students considering a course in your subject area?
Don’t leave assignments and tasks to the last minute - often you will be given multiple pieces of coursework to be completed within a certain timeframe, so start as soon as you’re given them, because trying to write three essays in one day isn’t going to be fun!
Make sure you attend lectures - sometimes you’ll miss some extra information/explanations that aren’t included in the supporting PowerPoint slides.
Ask for help!! The lecturers are so knowledgeable and they’re more than happy to help.
And finally, when the lecturers arrange additional courses make sure you attend them - when you graduate you’ll stand out more on your CV & in interviews if you’re able to show that you’ve got additional qualifications/experience.
What keeps you motivated?
If you love what you’re doing you don’t need motivation, the motivation is always there - yes sometimes I would feel a bit down if I was struggling on an assignment, but as soon as I reminded myself what my degree was helping me to achieve it was usually enough for me to get back to it
Can you recall a time you've doubted yourself? How did you overcome it?
Any time I apply for a job I always have a level of self-doubt even though I know I’m capable. To overcome this I remind myself of all the experience I have, of the degree that I hold, as well as all the qualifications I gained whilst at university thanks to LSBU, reminding me that I have the relevant skills, qualifications and experience to go for it - and at the end of the day, what have I got to lose!?