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Program Facts and Benefits

Undergraduate Exercise Physiology Program

  • The Exercise Physiology program currently has approximately 430 undergraduate students enrolled.
  • It's an official program of the OHIO Guarantee+.
  • The Exercise Physiology degree builds a strong science foundation that leads graduates to use their degrees to continue their education into medical schools, athletic training, physical therapy school and physician assistant programs. 
  • An undergraduate degree in Exercise Physiology from Ohio University will prepare students for three different professional directions: pre-professional program preparation, exercise physiology research and exercise physiology applications.
  • Students also develop the applied skills to evaluate physical fitness and to design and administer appropriate exercise prescriptions.
  • Opportunities for experiential learning at Wellworks and Campus Recreation
  • The degree program was created in 1989 and has over 30 years of experience.
  • Full-time faculty members dedicated to the study of Exercise Physiology and students.

Exercise Physiology Graduate Program

At Ohio University, we’re confident that investing in a master's degree in Exercise Physiology can open up new opportunities to enhance your professional life and career trajectory. Studying exercise physiology results in a versatile graduate degree that qualifies you for exciting jobs, solid careers and your own personal growth.

Six Reasons to earn your Master's in Exercise Physiology 

  1. Amplify your knowledge. You've already earned a Bachelor of Science in Exercise Physiology, Athletic Training, or another Exercise Science degree. This is your passion and field of interest. Take your degree and sharpen your knowledge about the human body, how exercise can improve fitness, athletic performance, and conduct academic research to prepare you to teach about your passion.
  2. Specialize your path. Advancing your career path with a master's degree from Ohio University in Exercise Physiology allows you to select from three different tracks.
    1. Clinical - Is designed to prepare students to work as researchers in the field, or as preventive and rehabilitative specialists (as certified by the American College of Sports Medicine). You'll receive advanced clinical experiences, practicum and classroom experiences, and internship placement opportunities.
    2. Human Performance - uniquely prepares you for the professional workforce as a competitive human performance practitioner. Interactions with athletes and coaches will allow you to gain an understanding of the day-to-day operations in the field as well as network with professionals who are connected to the industry.
    3. Research-based - this track prepares students to work in an academic or research environment.  Immersed in an environment rich with hands-on experiences and research viable equipment, you will be prepared upon graduatition to make an impact in the field. 
  3. Make an impact in your field. What can you do with a master's in Exercise Physiology? Each Exercise Physiology track offers unique experiences including clinical experiences, in the field internship opportunities with athletes and coaches, or access to state of the art research facilities and equipment.
  4. Timely.  Depending upon the track, programs durations range from three semesters on campus, one semester off campus, to a two-year degree. 
  5. Build a professional network. You'll study and work side-by-side with nationally recognized faculty members. You'll have a cohort of fellow students who will become lifelong colleagues and professional resources. 
  6. State-of-the-Art Research Facilities: Exercise Biochemistry Lab, Exercise Physiology Lab, Neuromuscular Biomechanics and Health Assessment Lab (NMBHAL), Strategies and Tools for Evaluating Play Lab (STEP), and the Human Performance Center

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History of Program

The first students enrolled as undergraduate Exercise Physiology majors did so in 1989, in what was then the College of Health and Human Services' School of Recreation and Sport Sciences. In 1990, the program had 38 majors. In those early years, heavy teaching loads and departmental laboratory space limited the program to only one dedicated course for Exercise Physiology majors: HPES 417 - Exercise Prescription (later to become PESS 417). A second dedicated course—PESS 416 - Resistance Training—was added to the major in 1996. By 1997, the program had grown to over 200 majors. After a two-year move out of the building, in 2001 Exercise Physiology returned to a newly renovated Grover Center and our first dedicated laboratory space: Grover E116, the Exercise Science Lab. With the expansion of the program to three faculty members, we were able to add more major-specific courses to the curriculum.

In the fall of 2003, undergraduate student enrollment was over 300, the number of faculty continued to grow, and demands on the Exercise Science Laboratory as a teaching and research space became excessive. So, in early 2004, we began discussions to design and implement new laboratory spaces. In the fall of 2005, the Exercise Physiology Laboratory (Grover E228) opened with a wealth of new equipment (including a metabolic cart, lactate/glucose analyzer and high-end treadmills) to deliver many of the program courses. Six months later, the Exercise Physiology Lab had an unfortunate christening when a major water leak—the "Great Grover Flood of 2006"—ruined approximately $50,000 worth of equipment. The entire School of Recreation and Sport Sciences moved to the RTEC building until late summer of that year while the building was repaired.

Faculty and more than 400 Exercise Physiology students returned to Grover Center in fall 2006. As we continued to add faculty and expand our curriculum, we installed an exercise biochemistry laboratory to the Exercise Physiology Laboratory, offering a benchtop space for graduate student education and research endeavors.

When the College of Health and Human Services reorganized as the College of Health Sciences and Professions in 2010, the Exercise Physiology program joined Athletic Training and Food and Nutrition Sciences to form the School of Applied Health Sciences and Wellness.

As they have since 1989, our faculty work together to prepare students for a variety of professional careers. Students who meet the eligibility and approval requirements have the option of enrolling in the school honors program.