Exercise Physiology

Exercise Physiology

Accredited exercise physiologists specialise in clinical exercise interventions for people with a broad range of health issues. Those people may be at risk of developing, or have existing, medical conditions and injuries. The aims of exercise physiology interventions are to prevent or manage acute, sub- acute or chronic disease or injury, and assist in restoring one’s optimal physical function, health or wellness. These interventions are exercise-based and include health and physical activity education, advice and support and lifestyle modification with a strong focus on achieving behavioural change.

Where do exercise physiologists practice?

Accredited exercise physiologists work across a range of health settings including public and private hospitals, private and multidisciplinary clinics, government and not-for profit organisations, workplace health and rehabilitation, aged care facilities, fitness centres, gymnasiums and sports organisations.

When should I see an exercise physiologist?

There are a wide range of reasons why a person may benefit from consulting an accredited exercise physiologist. These include chronic disease management referrals after diagnosis of a range of conditions including:

  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Pulmonary disease
  • Metabolic disease
  • Neurological disease
  • Musculoskeletal disease (including arthritis, osteoporosis/osteopenia, acute and/or chronic musculoskeletal issues)
  • Depression and other mental health conditions
  • Cancer

Accredited exercise physiologists may also assist with:

  • Assessments of functional capacity
  • Advice on lifestyle modification to improve health status
  • Exercise prescriptions for strength and function improvement pre- and post- surgery
  • Workplace assessments.

What services do exercise physiologists provide?

Accredited exercise physiologists offer a range of services which include behavioural coaching, health education, exercise counselling and physical rehabilitation. Services include the prescription of tailored exercise programs, promoting leisure-time and incidental activity, and counselling to reduce sedentary behaviours. This will include an assessment to ensure the activity is safe, effective and likely to be maintained in the long term.

Accredited exercise physiologists do not provide invasive services (except for point of care testing), diagnosis, joint manipulation or pharmaceutical medicines.

How are exercise physiologists qualified?

In order to practice, the following requirements must be met:

  • Complete a minimum 4-year bachelor degree provided by a National University Course Accredited Program
  • Complete continuing professional development and work under a code of ethics.

Further Information

For more detailed information about exercise physiology services, please visit the Exercise & Sport Science Australia website or view this video .

Find a practitioner

For more information for members of the public including how to find a practitioner click here.


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