How to become a sports professional
You can get into this job through:
- an apprenticeship
- being spotted by a talent scout
- a sponsorship or scholarship scheme
You may be able to start by doing an advanced apprenticeship as a sporting excellence professional (AASE).
Once you've completed your apprenticeship, you may turn professional or continue as an amateur while you get more experience.
Apprenticeship training providers set their own entry requirements.
You can find out more from the professional body for your sport.
- 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English and maths, for an advanced apprenticeship
You'll usually start by joining a club or amateur organisation where you can train and get coaching. A lot of sports professionals are spotted early on by talent scouts at this stage.
You can get details of local clubs and advice on the best way to get ahead in your sport from your sport's national governing body.
If you have talent and the potential to do well in your chosen sport, you could get help from:
- sponsorship schemes run by universities that offer support to students to train and compete while studying
- the Talented Athlete Scholarship Scheme, which supports young people in education to perform at their best, while keeping up their studies
In most sports, you'll find it useful to carry on with your training or education in case you:
- need another income apart from your sport
- need another income for when your performing career is over
You can get more details on what it takes to become a professional sportsperson from Sport England.