5 Hobbies That Could Lead to Surprising Careers

student tip Jan 20, 2021

Most people think of hobbies as just for fun. They should be! But they can also inspire you down a certain career path - maybe even one you hadn’t thought of before. 

When it comes to merging hobbies with a career, most people think of them as a way to start your own business and become an entrepreneur. But if that’s not your goal, there are still plenty of ways a hobby can help you make a career decision. 

We’ve looked at some common types of hobbies to create this list of potential careers that arise from things you do for fun. Some of these are more traditional hobbies, while others might be activities you happen to enjoy or things you take an interest in. No matter where you stand, if there’s something on this list that’s intriguing to you, take a closer look. It could be the surprise inspiration you need to find a career you’ll love. 

How to Get Career Inspiration from Your Hobbies

To get the best career inspiration from your hobbies, you’ll need to look beyond the obvious career paths. Just because you like sports doesn’t mean you should be an athlete; anyone who likes cooking isn’t destined to become a chef. 

Instead, you have to think more deeply about what it is that draws you to this hobby. Is it the actual activity itself? The strategy behind it? Something you need to research or learn in order to be good at it? The more specific you can get, the easier it will be to see possible career paths. In this list, we’ve given you a lot of ideas to get you started, but don’t be afraid to dig deeper and reflect on what truly motivates you!  

Sports & Fitness

If you play a sport or enjoy being active, there are more career options than just becoming an athlete. There are options for training, coaching, teaching, and so much more. 

Here are a few career paths you might take if your hobby falls under sports and fitness: 

  • Physical education teacher: if you enjoy working with kids and playing games 
  • Athletic director: if you like planning games and managing teams 
  • Personal trainer: if you’re more into general fitness and working one-on-one
  • Sports therapist: if you’re interested in medicine and health with a sports focus
  • Nutritionist: if you love both food and sports    

Hiking, Camping, & Outdoor Sports

If you really love the great outdoors, you might consider careers that are more active and give you lots of time outside. 

These career options might be a good fit: 

  • Forest or park ranger: if you want to spend all day outdoors, helping others enjoy and protect nature
  • Naturalist, environmentalist, or researcher: if you want to learn a lot about the natural world, and have the freedom to study whatever you like
  • Marine technician: if you love the ocean and want to travel all over

Another option is to find a career with lots of flexibility so you can have more time to spend on your outdoor adventures. Flexible jobs can be found in all kinds of industries, but marketing, IT, and freelance jobs are usually among the most flexible.


Whether you enjoy keeping a journal or you’ve already written a draft of your first novel, writing is a hobby that will come in handy in almost any profession. But if you want writing to be a major component of your career, consider one of these career paths:

  • Marketing copywriter: if you want to focus on writing while also meeting a variety of challenges
  • Editor or proofreader: if you love the mechanics of writing more than the creative aspects
  • Public relations strategist: if you can tell a good story no matter what

Computers & Coding

There are dozens of career options when it comes to computers, coding, and other technology. And as technology changes rapidly, more and more career paths open up. Here are a few to look into: 

  • Web developer: if you know how websites work and always want to make them better
  • IT manager: if you like working on the big picture of an entire computer system
  • Computer engineer: if you want to help technology advance further

Social Media & Surfing the Web

All right, we know this isn’t really a hobby, but chances are you spend a good amount of time online. And if you understand how the internet works, there are a ton of ways you can turn that into a career. Here are a few: 

  • SEO strategist: if you want to figure out how Google works
  • Social media marketer: if you can craft a viral tweet and want Twitter to be your job
  • Market researcher: if you want to figure out where everyone spends their time online

What Career Will Your Hobby Lead To? 

You might feel like you don’t have any of these hobbies - and that’s okay! It’s not too late to try out one of these hobbies and see if it’s a good fit. 

If you have a hobby we haven’t covered here, do some thinking and research on what kinds of careers it could lead to. There are so many possible jobs that draw on skills and interests you might already have. It’s just a matter of finding the right one for you. 

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