The importance of sports and fitness for providing a healthy lifestyle has been realised globally. Therefore, curricula today, have a prominent space for physical education. The stream has gained much popularity over the years and is now considered a great career option owing to the wide-ranging job prospects. Students are encouraged to choose their field by the Sports Authority of India and the central government. Universities, thus, offer interesting courses wherein aspirants can turn their long-standing hobbies into a full-time profession.

Here is a look at the eight best colleges in India that offer physical education courses:

College of Physical Education, Pune: This institution was founded in 1995 and is now a component of Bharati Vidyapeeth University. It has been recognised by the National Council of Teachers’ Education and students can opt from two undergraduate, three postgraduate as well as PhD programmes in physical education. There are a fixed number of seats available, which are allotted on merit. Check out www.bharatividyapeeth.edu/

Lakshmibai National College of Physical Education, Thiruvananthapuram: Affiliated to the University of Kerala, it has a wide range of courses in physical education, starting from undergraduate and postgraduate to research options. The college has the distinction of being a part of the academic wing of the Sports Authority of India. Candidates need to clear an entrance test to be eligible for admission. Check out www.lnipe.gov.in/

Indira Gandhi Institute of Physical Education and Sports Science, New Delhi: One of the leading institutions under the Faculty of Education, University of Delhi, it was founded in 1987. The college offers Bachelor of science courses in physical education, health education and sports, and their programmes are recognised by the NCTE. Admissions are merit-based. Check out https://www.univariety.com/

Amity School of Physical Education and Sports Sciences, Noida: This university can rival the best in the world when it comes to facilities and educational excellence. The department for physical education offers undergraduate and post graduate degrees as well as a postgraduate Diploma in sports psychology. Admissions take place on the basis of a practical test and an interview. Check out amity.edu/aspess/

Bombay Physical Culture Association&’s College of Physical Education, Mumbai: This institution has been educating students and imparting knowledge on sports and fitness since 1935. Affiliated to the University of Mumbai, it offers both undergraduate and postgraduate courses in physical education. No entrance exam is required for admission. Check out www.bpcacpemumbai.org/

Sadguru Education Society&’s College of Physical Education, Jalgaon: Managed, guided and sponsored by the Sadguru Education Society, it was founded in 1970 and is one of the best places in India to pursue physical education from. Seats for undergraduate and postgraduate courses are limited. For the undergraduate programme, candidates must clear an entrance examination, whereas for the Master&’s, the college considers marks in respective subjects. Check out www.bpedjal.org/

Chandrashekhar Agashe College of Physical Education, Pune: With a view to create and educate youth about sport, exercise and physical activities, the foundation of this college was laid in 1977. Backed by the National Assessment and Accreditation Council, it offers a wide range of courses. Admissions are merit-based. Check out agashecollege.org/

Lakshmibai National College of Physical Education, Gwalior: A deemed university, this is one of the leading colleges in the field of physical education. The courses available are Bachelor of physical education, Diploma in sports coaching, Master of physical education, Master of arts in yoga, Postgraduate Diploma in fitness management, Diploma in Sports Coaching, Postgraduate Diploma in yoga education, integrated M Phil-PhD programme in physical education, postgraduate Diploma in sports coaching and D Phil in physical education. Check out www.lncpe.gov.in/