Home » Women in Sports » As Sports Nutrition Grows, So Do Opportunities for Women
Women in Sports

As Sports Nutrition Grows, So Do Opportunities for Women

Sports dietitians are advanced practice registered dietitians who have specialized in the area of performance nutrition. They translate the latest scientific evidence into practical sports nutrition recommendations for athletes.

Sports dietitians work with teams and individual athletes to improve performance, enhance recovery, and advance overall health. They help athletes with nutrition fueling strategies based on sports, time of year, training schedule, and performance and health goals.

Sports dietitians help athletes achieve and maintain an appropriate body composition for their sport and athletic goals, while advising how to fuel up before, during, and after competition.

These specialists also collaborate with a multi-disciplinary team of sports medicine physicians, sports psychologists, athletic trainers, and strength coaches. Through collaboration, this team is able to provide well-rounded, complete care for athletes.

Now is the time

Sports nutrition is an exciting, challenging field that continues to grow and gain momentum as athletes, coaches, and athletic departments reap the rewards of investing in qualified sports dietitians.

In 2005, there were fewer than 10 full-time sports dietitians at NCAA Division I programs. Today, there are more than 170 NCAA sports dietitians, and the growth of sports nutrition programs has extended to the NFL, NBA, MLB, MLS, NHL, Olympics, and military settings.


Women have played an integral part in this growth and continue to be well represented across all settings. The percentage of full-time sports dietitians that are female is impressive.

  • 140/170 NCAA Division I
  • 11/24 National Football League
  • 9/11 Major League Baseball
  • 3/6 Major League Soccer
  • 2/4 National Basketball Association
  • 2/2 National Hockey League
  • 4/6 Olympic training centers
  • 16/21 Military tactical settings

*Numbers from Collegiate & Professional Sports Dietitians Association (CPSDA)

With new research continuing to inspire advancements in the field of sports nutrition, the momentum behind this exciting and rewarding field is growing, and will continue to play an important role in the world of elite sport; as well as forging a space for women to impact athletes in a meaningful way.

Collegiate & Professional Sports Dietitians Association (CPSDA) Board of Directors, [email protected]

Next article