Therapy

Educational Programs
Bachelor's Degree
Barry University
Clearwater Christian College
Florida Atlantic University
Florida International University
Florida State University
Stetson University
University of Florida
University of Miami
University of Tampa
University of West Florida

Master's Degree
Barry University
Florida Atlantic University
Florida International University
Florida State University
University of Central Florida
University of Florida
University of Miami
University of West Florida

Doctor of Philosophy
Florida State University
University of Florida
University of Miami

Professional Associations
American College of Sports Medicine
American Society of Exercise Physiologists

Physiologists with a specific interest in the physiology of exercise are called exercise physiologists.

Their duties include monitoring and assessing cardiovascular and metabolic effects and mechanisms of exercise, replenishment of fluids during exercise, and exercise for cardiac and musculoskeletal rehabilitation.

Exercise Physiologist

Areas of Specialization
They may conduct fitness evaluation, and prescribe exercise programs for overall health maintenance. Or they may focus on specialties such as cardiology, sports medicine, respiratory or physical therapy. This may include risk identification, and rehabilitation in conjunction with other health professionals who provide rehabilitation programs. In educational settings they may teach courses for students of medicine, physiology, and other health related fields.

Work Environment
Exercise physiologists may be employed in extremely diverse settings, such as community organization venues, or in commercial/industrial facilities, health clubs, recreation centers; and educational institutions. Exercise physiologists may also work in clinical settings prescribing exercise for cardiac, pulmonary, or other types of patients referred by a physician.

Job Outlook
The job outlook is good due to the increasing emphasis on prevention of illness and on exercise as a means of promoting good health. Also, there are many opportunities for research on aging, rehabilitation of muscle injuries, and the health benefits of exercise.

Length of Training/Requirements
The education requirements vary depending on the employment settings; usually a master's degree in exercise physiology is the minimum requirement. However, for individuals who plan to hold positions in organizations or commercial settings, an undergraduate degree in physical education, exercise science, health science, and nutrition is helpful. Additional training in physical therapy and kinesiology is valuable for persons seeking positions in health related settings. For an academic career in research and/or teaching, a Ph.D. degree is required.

Licensure/Certification
Certification requirements for exercise physiologists in most states are not well established. However, for those interested in employment other than an academic career, the certification for exercise test technologist, exercise specialist, or health/fitness director is available through the American College of Sports Medicine. ACSM's highest certification is program director. Continuing education hours are required every four years for recertification.

Salary
According to the Florida Agency for Workforce Innovation, Labor Market Statistics Center, exercise physiologists earned $43,323 annually in 2009.



Updated: 2009