Exercise is Medicine is a Capstone unit within the HBES and HBBM degree. Students will build upon their broad and coherent knowledge of the pathophysiology of chronic diseases and apply their learning in the formulation and management of evidence-based, safe, targeted and innovative exercise intervention programs as a non-pharmacological intervention strategy to prevent cardiovascular disease, diabetes, depression, dementia and falls; improve mental health and cognitive function; and promote active and healthy ageing.

Unit details

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Credit points:
Unit code:


RBM2560 - Medical Biochemistry

RBM2800 - Cardiorespiratory and Renal Physiology

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:
  1. Conceptually map physiological adaptations to different exercise modalities in order to inform prevention, treatment and management of chronic diseases;  
  2. Analyse the benefits of exercise in managing chronic conditions, including ageing at a cellular and molecular level;  
  3. Identify and justify the therapeutic benefits of graded exercise taking into account functional limitations of chronic disease;  
  4. Formulate and evaluate evidence-based exercise prescriptions for a range of chronic conditions in accordance with Australian Physical Activity Guidelines;  
  5. Predict the impact of potential drug-exercise interactions when designing exercise therapy and adjust interventions accordingly; and  
  6. Incorporate behaviour-change principles into physical activity programs to suit a diverse range of individuals and groups.  


Assessment type Description Grade
Case Study Exercise prescription for a specific chronic disease (1000 words) 20%
Laboratory Work Laboratory reports on exercise-based measurements and analysis (2 x 500 words) 20%
Presentation Presentation of Case Study (500 words) 20%
Examination End of Semester Examination (2 hours) 40%

Required reading

Readings as instructed by lecturers. Fact sheets of exercise guidelines for chronic disease will be provided by the lecturer.

American College of Sports Medicine - ACSM's guidelines for exercise testing and prescription 9th ed.
L. S. Pescatello, R. Arena, D. Riebe, P. D.Thompson (2014)
Philadelphia: Wolters Kluwer/Lippincott Williams & Wilkins Health

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