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Building Bridges: Fostering a Positive Relationship Between Interns and Supervisors in Exercise and Sport Science

The objective of this investigation was to gain an understanding of the learning experiences of undergraduate students pursuing exercise and sport science during their fitness professional internship. The study aimed to shed light on various aspects, including the personal development of the interns, the influence of supervision (where an academic supervisor served as a dual professional), and the feedback they received concerning their growth as fitness professionals. To achieve this objective, a cohort of 25 exercise and sport science interns actively participated in a focus group discussion. Through this qualitative approach, the interns' perceptions of the internship experience were explored, leading to the identification of four significant themes. The first theme that emerged from the interns' perspective was a favourable rapport with supervision. They highlighted the importance of having a positive and supportive relationship with their supervisors, which contributed to their overall learning experience. This finding emphasizes the role of effective mentorship in fostering professional growth. The second theme that emerged was a sense of responsibility for their learning. The interns expressed a proactive attitude towards their own education, recognizing the need to take ownership of their learning process and actively seek opportunities for growth. The third theme identified was contentment. The interns reported a high level of satisfaction with their internship experience, indicating that they felt fulfilled and engaged during their time as fitness professionals. This finding underscores the importance of creating an enriching and rewarding environment for interns. The fourth and final theme cantered around the acquisition of professional skills. The interns acknowledged the significant development of their skills and competencies as fitness professionals during the internship. These findings hold insights for both academic and workplace supervisors in the field of fitness professionals. Supervisors can enhance the effectiveness of internships and ultimately contribute to the growth and success of fitness professionals. It is important to note that while this investigation primarily focused on the experiences of exercise and sport science interns, the outcomes have potential implications for other cooperative learning environments. Specifically, these findings can be generalized to similar settings within the realms of health science and wellness. By recognizing the transferability of these insights, educators and supervisors in related fields can adapt and apply these principles to foster effective learning experiences for their students and interns.

Fitness, Professional, Education, Internship, Skills

APA Style

Ferdinando Cereda. (2023). Building Bridges: Fostering a Positive Relationship Between Interns and Supervisors in Exercise and Sport Science. American Journal of Sports Science, 11(3), 68-75.

ACS Style

Ferdinando Cereda. Building Bridges: Fostering a Positive Relationship Between Interns and Supervisors in Exercise and Sport Science. Am. J. Sports Sci. 2023, 11(3), 68-75. doi: 10.11648/j.ajss.20231103.12

AMA Style

Ferdinando Cereda. Building Bridges: Fostering a Positive Relationship Between Interns and Supervisors in Exercise and Sport Science. Am J Sports Sci. 2023;11(3):68-75. doi: 10.11648/j.ajss.20231103.12

Copyright © 2023 Authors retain the copyright of this article.
This article is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License ( which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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