This unit discusses the design and delivery of exercise and physical activity services for apparently healthy individuals, including athletes. Students develop an understanding of client-centered exercise delivery, and the challenges of behaviour change that are often needed for lifelong participation in exercise and physical activity. The unit investigates how variables including the client's history of exercise, physical activity and injury, the client's goals, likes and dislikes, barriers and opportunities (eg. sociocultural, socioeconomic factors, socio-psychological, environmental), and the client's current exercise and functional capacities affect program prescription and uptake. Students learn the importance of cultural competence in the design and delivery of services. Students also develop hands-on expertise to conduct needed, appropriate assessments within  the physical health-domain comprising of the major components of health-related physical fitness, in addition to the neuromotor components of balance, agility and coordination of adults. Students develop critical thinking skills to analyse the collected base-line assessment results, based on the functional capacities of clients and how these capabilities compare with normative data that can be used to plan, design and compose individualised exercise interventions. Students are exposed to the importance of developing a safe and effective demonstration and leadership of appropriate exercises and training regimes.

Unit details

Study level:
Credit points:
Unit code:


SCL1002 - Exercise Physiology or

RBM1528 - Human Physiology 2

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:
  1. Understanding the health consequences of physical inactivity and sedentary behaviour to decide whether to apply client-centered exercise testing, prescription & delivery after pre-participation screening showed no identification of known, diagnosed cardiovascular, metabolic and / or renal (CMR) diseases or signs and/or symptoms suggestive of CMR diseases that might necessitate potential referral to a health care provider for further testing, thereby reducing potential barriers to the adoption of PA, prior to initiation of an exercise program;  
  2. Devise appropriate exercise interventions that consider clients' current level of physical activity, goals, physical activity preferences, needs, barriers and motives for physical activity;  
  3. Select and conduct exercise assessment methods and procedures that are appropriate to clients' needs, goals and behaviours and being able to modify the exercise prescription based on clients' adverse physiological responses, and signs and symptoms suggestive of CMR disease during physical exertion;  
  4. Select and apply safe, client-centred exercise limits, including appropriate and effective intensity ranges for physical activity and exercise; and,  
  5. Design, compose and implement sound and sensible exercise and physical activity interventions that consider basic training principles and address the basic principles of exercise program design and basic elements of exercise prescription i.e. mode, intensity, duration, frequency, volume, pattern and progression of exercise.  


Assessment type Description Grade
Test Online Quizzes x 3 - Weeks 2 & 3 15%
Case Study (Part 1) Case study - formal report and interpretation of a client case performance and proposed exercise program 35%
Case Study (Part 2) Recorded Video - video evidence of selected tests 10%
Practicum (Part 1) Observation Checklist - demonstration of practical skills 10%
Practicum (Part 2) Analysis of Case Study - clinical reasoning & analysis of hypothetical case study scenario 30%
Hurdle 1: To gain an overall pass in this unit students must attend and complete 80% of the Lab sessions (Complies with compulsory NUCAP requirement).

Required reading

Advanced Fitness Assessment and Exercise Prescription 8th ed
Gibson, A.L., Wagner, D.R & Heyward, V.H. (2019)
Human Kinetics

Total Fitness and Wellness. The Mastering Health edition 7th ed
Powers, S.K and Dodd, S. (2017)

Check VU Collaborate for other texts available through close reserve, Library services.

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