Exercise physiology is the study of the body’s responses to a wide range of physical activity. Exercise physiologists can be basic scientists, clinical researchers, clinicians, or sports trainers. Additionally, many exercise physiologists study the effect of exercise on pathology, and the mechanisms by which exercise can reduce or reverse disease progression. In simple terms, its primary focus is "exercise as medicine."
The field of exercise physiology can be split into two main areas of specialization: fitness and rehabilitation. Exercise physiologists who focus on fitness may work with professional athletes to improve their performance, or work with private clients who are trying to lose weight and get in shape. Exercise physiologists who specialize in rehabilitation often help people who are recovering from injuries or dealing with chronic conditions by developing a personalized exercise program that can be used as part of a comprehensive treatment strategy.1
Exercise physiologists also devote a great deal of study to how physical activity influences the body’s cardiovascular system, endocrine system, and musculoskeletal system. Other areas of focus include human energy expenditure, human energy transfer, and environmental effects on physiology. Within this discipline, exercise physiologists encounter biochemistry, hematology, biomechanics, neuroendocrine functions, and nervous system functions as well.
1. WiseGeek. (n.d.). What is Exercise Physiology? Retrieved from http://www.wisegeek.com/what-is-exercise-physiology.htm
Exercise Physiology. (n.d.) Retrieved February 8,2014 from Wikipedia the Free Encyclopedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Exercise_physiology