10 Job Options for People Looking for a Career Change at 50

If you are looking for a career change at 50, you are not alone. A survey by Oxbridge Learning found that 90% of over 50s want a career change, with 59% of people retraining for a new career at 50. 

Career Change at 50

There is a common misconception that people at the age of 50 or older are on the scrap heap of life. However, being 50 or over can be the ideal age for a career change at 50. Over your professional life, you have developed a strong work ethic, gained lots of professional and life experience, and are more efficient, confident, and organised. Not to mention, you are a more reliable career prospect in comparison to younger generations. 

A career change a 50 therefore can be a perfect time to look at new job options or self employed ideas. Whether you are looking to follow a new passion, learn new things, or have a better work-life balance, there is always a solution for you. Some of the career change at 50 options we have explored involve some sort re-training or gaining new qualifications, and some are some of the highest paying jobs without a degree

Here are the best 10 career change at 50 ideas for people looking for a changing careers at 50.

Changing Careers at 50 to become a Personal Trainer

Career Change at 50 to be a personal trainer

A personal trainer focuses on enhancing clients’ fitness goals, crafting specific training programs to help them meet these goals. As a career, it can be extremely rewarding seeing people improve their health, wellness, and, in turn, their confidence and lives. There is a growing demand for personal trainers specialising in the over 50s age group due to the average life expectancy increasing. More and more people are living longer and are living healthily, active lives for longer.

Those who have a passion for fitness and a desire to work with those over 50 are perfectly positioned for this and can be an emotional journey for a personal trainer who has undergone their own transformation and wishes to impart knowledge and skills to others.

To become a personal trainer after 50, it is essential to obtain the necessary qualifications. The average full-time personal trainer earns a very lucrative amount with an uncapped potential as you can run your services in your own business. 

A career change at 50 to become a personal trainer will involve gaining your personal trainer course qualifications. This involves gaining your Level 2 Gym Instructor Course Qualification and your Level 3 Personal Training Diploma. You can become a personal trainer by studying our combined Level 3 Gym and Personal Training Diploma.

Being a personal trainer to clients over the age of 50 is different from those in their 20s; they will potentially have more commitments, and they may have different fitness and strength considerations. However, as with all personal training but it’s essential to work with the clients according to their individual needs and level of fitness.

There is a greater focus on functional fitness in the modern age, with many clients not looking for that six-pack or sculpted physique but just want to be stronger. Older personal trainers can bring valuable life experience, empathy, and this could translate to a strong ability to build a reputation, which can be advantageous when acquiring clients. Overall, being a personal trainer is a rewarding career prospect for anybody looking for a career change at 50 or over, and is something you’re never too old to be a personal trainer.

To fast track your career change at 50 you can study in person with a 5 week course to complete your personal training course qualifications. You can attend any of our UK locations to complete this in person, like at our London personal trainer course venue, Manchester, Derby, Newcastle, Bristol or at our personal training courses in Glasgow.

However in person study where you attend one of venues for 5 weeks, Monday to Friday, might not suit your commitments if you have a full-time job or family commitments. You can choose to study our personal training courses online – giving you complete flexibility and the ability to study on your terms with your own timeframe.

Nursing as a Career Change at 50

Career Change at 50 to nursing

Nursing is a varied and rewarding career in so many different ways. You can be a community nurse who goes to people’s houses, a learning disability nurse, or a nurse practitioner. There are numerous opportunities for people who have a passion for helping others, and people over 50 are perfectly positioned to be nurses, especially those who have grown-up children. 

Typically, you would need to retrain to be a nurse, especially if you wanted to specialise in a certain area of nursing. However, there are more apprenticeships than ever, which can be a viable option for those who have already completed their home payments and have reduced outgoings.

The most common route to nursing is by completing a nursing degree, and there is financial support available for eligible students. As a career, nursing offers strong job prospects, with 94% of nursing students securing employment within six months of finishing their course, and abundant opportunities for specialisation in areas of interest, career progression, and continuous professional development. 

Pursuing a career in nursing is feasible after the age of 50 and can lead to an incredibly fulfilling professional and personal journey. What’s more, nursing is a profession that values diverse experiences and skills that individuals bring. Anybody looking for a career change at 50 has a wealth of life experience that can instantly translate into a more attentive, caring, and impactful nurse.

Changing Career at 50 to become a counsellor

Counselling is often considered a great career choice later in life. People over the age of 50 are valued more for their life and work experience, making them an attractive option to employers. Many people over the age of 50 have undergone personal transformation, and the ability to impart this knowledge to others can be a very rewarding and lucrative career prospect. The average earnings for counsellors in the UK can vary, with starting salaries in the region of £20,000 to £26,000, experienced counsellors can earn up to £40,000, and those who progress to specialist or lead counselling roles, such as in addiction, can attract even higher salaries.

To pursue a career in counselling at the age of 50 typically starts with an introduction to counselling certificate in counselling skills and a diploma or a university counselling or psychology degree. To be a professional counsellor requires a minimum number of client hours acquired through a work placement. When choosing a course, it needs to be accredited and recognised by relevant bodies such as the UK Council for Psychotherapy and the British Association for Counseling and Psychotherapy (BACP)

Counselling is a career path where no two days are the same. It requires great listening skills, the ability to concentrate for long periods of time, and the ability to deal with highly complex emotional and psychological conditions and situations. For anybody looking for a career change at 50, counselling can be an incredible challenge that is infinitely rewarding.

Tradesperson as a Career Change at 50

One of the industries that are in great demand involves practical skills. Roles as carpenter, electrician, painter, decorator, roofer, plumber, and more are in danger of being lost because of the greater drive for digital skills over the last two decades. While considered a role for younger people, for those who are looking for a career change at 50 being a tradesperson can be an excellent option. There are numerous opportunities for qualified tradespeople in the UK and there’s a greater drive for these types of skills with specific apprenticeship schemes aimed at older adults seeking a career change at 50.

People who have already paid off mortgages and other essential outgoings can benefit from an apprenticeship, as this provides a practical way to switch careers offering the opportunity to earn and learn at the same time.

With various retraining opportunities, government schemes, and apprenticeship options available, it can be a very attractive and lucrative path for individuals seeking a career change later in life, with a salary range averaging approximately £35,000 a year in the UK, with the potential for tradespeople in London to earn even higher salaries. There are quite a few tradesperson roles that feature in the highest paying jobs uk too.

It is a role that involves meeting new people and problem-solving. For people looking for a dose of variety in their lives, a career as a tradesperson can be a very viable solution.

Career Change at 50 as a Strength and Conditioning Coach

Changing Careers at 50 as a strength and conditioning coach

A strength and conditioning coach helps athletes and sports people boost their performance in various areas such as speed, strength, and endurance. With the average salary of a strength and conditioning coach approximately £29,000 per year with unlimited potential if you run your own personal training business, it can be an excellent career choice for people at the age of 50 or over. The demand for strength and conditioning coaches in the over-50s market is growing due to the ageing population in the UK presenting a significant opportunity for people who have a passion for fitness. 

To pursue a career as a strength and conditioning coach in the UK, there are a number of options, including gaining your level two qualification with our Level 2 Gym Instructor course then progressing straight to gain your Strength and Conditioning qualification or you can study Level 3 Personal Training after Level 2 before moving on to our Level 4 Personal Training course to quality as a strength and conditioning coach.

Additionally, to be an effective strength and conditioning coach, it is vital to assess your knowledge, skills, and your current level of fitness. It is not essential, but it is important to set an example for clients, as this can be an incredible selling point, especially if you plan on branching out into running your own fitness business. 

Read our guide on how to become a strength and conditioning coach for the full breakdown.


One route that can be a fulfilling and meaningful career change at 50 is a celebrant. A celebrant is someone who is the master of ceremonies either at weddings, funerals, or religious events. Celebrants possess strong public speaking skills, communication, and empathy. To become a celebrant, there is no traditional route. However, it is recommended to pursue relevant qualifications or undergo professional training, with various programs and courses available to develop the necessary skills. It is essential to understand the legal and ceremonial aspects of weddings and funerals but also to ensure an understanding of the demand for celebrants in your local area.

Often, a celebrant is a self-employed venture and requires building your own business, therefore it may be necessary to develop effective marketing strategies to promote your service. As an industry, the demand for celebrants is on the rise, with an increasing need for unique ceremony content. As many people are looking for a unique and personalised approach to their weddings or funerals, celebrants can fulfil a very unique position in the wedding and funeral market. 

Earnings for a celebrant can vary based on the reputation, experience, and type of ceremony being conducted. The average salary is reported as £35,186 per year according to FindCourses.co.uk and can be a lucrative career prospect that provides flexibility. For someone looking for a career change at 50, this could be the perfect opportunity for a seasoned professional with life experience.

Sports Massage Therapist Changing Careers at 50

Sports Massage Therapist Changing Careers at 50

Because people are living longer, this also means there’s a greater degree of physical ailments, especially among those who are playing sports in their 50s, 60s, and beyond. Therefore, being a sports massage therapist can be a viable career change at 50 or over. 

Sports massage therapists offer physical therapy that focuses on specific muscle groups to help with muscle soreness, injuries, and inflammation. This is the type of role that can involve going to clients’ homes, working in a gym, or attending a sports event or game to provide emergency help.

With a salary starting at approximately £19,000 per year, there’s also uncapped potential for earnings further down the line. To become a sports massage therapist, it is essential to enrol in an entry-level qualification for practising as a sports massage therapist in the UK, such as the Level 3 Sports Massage Therapy Diploma, which can provide an excellent starting point. Many individuals start by providing massage therapy as self-employed practitioners, but can also make successful career transitions as sports massage therapists later in life.

The Level 3 is just the first of our sports massage courses, in your journey to change career at 50 and become a sports massage therapist, you can also go on to study and gain your Level 4 sports massage course certificate which enables you to treat patients with injuries.

Career Change at 50 as a Life Coach/Mentor 

The pressures of modern living present an opportunity for life coaches or mentors to offer guidance and support that makes an impact on somebody’s life. The demand for life coaches and mentors is increasing, and while formal qualifications are not mandatory, courses in coaching and mentoring are available at various levels and are particularly suitable for individuals seeking a career change at 50 or older. 

Mentoring and life coaching offer diverse opportunities and can involve working with individuals, groups, or specific organisations. In terms of salary, it can vary depending on experience, specialisation, and if a life coach can also be a great self employed idea. According to Glassdoor, the average salary is £29,185, and a self-employed coach could charge approximately £40 to £60 per hour, with experienced coaches charging up to £100 per session. 

One of the benefits of pursuing a career change at 50 is the wealth of life experience you have gained along the way, meaning this can perfectly position you as a mentor to guide people through the tricky parts of life and can, therefore, be a very fulfilling career path.

Childcare / Childminder as Career Change at 50

Changing Career at 50 as a childminder

Many people at the age of 50 and over are more likely to have children who have either grown up or are close to growing up, and therefore, fulfilling that maternal or paternal need can be achieved through a career in childcare. There are various roles available, including numerous childminder roles, but there can also be different aspects of childcare. For example, working in a care setting providing support to children with learning difficulties or behavioural issues can be a very fulfilling career choice.

To pursue a career in a nursery setting, it is often essential to have a childcare qualification such as an NVQ or BTEC or usually expect some experience of childcare. There are also many part-time opportunities, such as after-school childcare, which can be particularly suitable for people over 50 looking for flexible working arrangements. Childcare can be a very rewarding career path for people over the age of 50, where experience and life skills can be very valuable. 

To start a career at 50 in childcare, it may be essential to acquire additional certifications, for example, a clean DBS certificate, a full UK driving licence, and first aid training. There’s also the opportunity to be a self-employed childminder, with nanny agency websites helping people build a client base.

Pursuing a career change at 50 for a pathway in childcare provides various roles and opportunities, with many experienced professionals moving on either to start their own childcare business or become involved in the childcare industry, such as being a qualification assessor.

Career Change at 50 as a Driving Instructor

There is currently a shortage of driving instructors, meaning there are ample opportunities to enter this profession. The role of a driving instructor is one that requires patience, flexibility, and the ability to teach. Earnings depend on how much a driving instructor charges. 

According to The Annual UK Driving Instructor review, RED driving instructors earn an average of £32.52 per hour, and The National Careers Service provides a range of £15,000 for starters to £30,000 for experienced driving instructors.

To pursue a career change at change at 50 to become a driving instructor, it will be essential to obtain the necessary qualifications and complete an approved driving instructor (ADI) training program, which involves three parts: a theory test, a practical driving test, and a test of your ability to instruct. 

As a role, there can be flexibility to control the hours you work if you choose to start your own driving school, but there are also driving schools that offer guaranteed instructor positions once you are qualified, which can provide security and peace of mind when transitioning into your new career.

Ready to Start a Career Change at 50?

Career Change at 50 ideas

It is never too late to make changes in our lives and start at career change at 50. With a desire for more fulfilling and purposeful work, the need to downshift to less stressful roles, and the availability of opportunities in different industries have empowered many people in their 50s to explore new and exciting professional paths. 

There are so many roles to undertake if you are looking for a career change at 50, and these 10 are the tip of the iceberg. Whether you want to be a counsellor, a personal trainer, sports massage therapist or officiate weddings, the opportunities are endless.

Get in touch with our team today to discuss your career change options and how we can support you.

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