Exercise & Sports Science

An Exercise & Sports Science degree encompasses a diverse field of study from personal training to clinical laboratory research. Students prepare for careers in clinical, corporate, community, or commercial settings in which exercise testing and prescription is a primary focus.

An undergraduate degree in Exercise & Sports Science may also serve as a step toward the pursuit of a graduate degree in exercise physiology or related area.

Students may also enter specialized programs leading to careers in strength and conditioning, physical or occupational therapy, cardiac or pulmonary rehabilitation, nutrition, physician’s assistant, chiropractic medicine, and clinical research.

Highlights of the Exercise & Sports Science Degree

Castleton Exercise Science Facilities

  • Applied Physiology Laboratory
  • Two metabolic measurement systems
  • Fitness Center which provides free weights and selectorized equipment
  • Biochemistry area with quality equipment such as a Nanodrop spectrophotometer, centrifuges, microcentrifuge, etc…
  • Micro-assay capabilities for several analytes and other blood components such as glucose, Hb, lactate, hs-CRP, cholesterol with lipid profile, etc.
  • Several electrocardiography units
  • Lung spirometer

Exercise & Sports Science Degree Areas of Specialization

As a student in the Exercise and Sports Science program, you can focus on your interest in three areas of specialization:

Strength & Conditioning

Strength and conditioning is one of the fastest-growing specializations in the field of exercise science.

The strength and conditioning curriculum prepares students to work with high school, collegiate, professional, and other elite athletes in developing exercise programs to enhance athletic performance variables such as speed, agility, strength, power, endurance, and flexibility.

Clinical Exercise Physiology

The clinical exercise physiologist is an allied health professional who uses exercise and physical activity to assess and treat patients at risk of, or diagnosed with, chronic diseases or conditions where exercise has been shown to provide therapeutic and/or functional benefit.

Career Opportunities include:

  • Physicians' offices, clinics, hospitals, and diagnostic centers in cardiac/pulmonary rehabilitation
  • Exercise testing
  • Exercise prescription
  • Electrocardiography
  • Disease management of cardiac, pulmonary, and metabolic diseases.


Researchers conduct studies in either basic or applied science.

Basic researchers usually conduct studies with a focus on the cellular and molecular levels, such as how organ systems work, adapt, or respond to various factors. This type of research includes both human and animal studies.

Applied researchers usually conduct studies with a focus on more practical questions that appear to be more applicable for immediate use, such as ways to increase athletic performance or how to improve health and reduce disease.

Students in this area take coursework designed for graduate school admission and performing independent studies.