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HL20538: Physiology of exercise, health and nutrition (HES)

[Page last updated: 04 August 2021]

Academic Year: 2021/2
Owning Department/School: Department for Health
Credits: 7.5 [equivalent to 15 CATS credits]
Notional Study Hours: 150
Level: Intermediate (FHEQ level 5)
Semester 1
Assessment Summary: EX75PR25
Further information on unit assessment Assessment Detail:
  • Assessment detail for this unit will be available shortly.
Supplementary Assessment:
Like-for-like reassessment (where allowed by programme regulations)
Requisites: Before taking this module you must take HL10521 AND take HL10524
Aims: To introduce the health-related physiological adaptations that occur as a result of regular physical activity and how these adaptations interact with nutrition and energy balance.

Learning Outcomes:
  1. Explain physiological adaptations to regular physical activity and interactions with diet.
  2. Compare the relevant research techniques used to study changes in physiology with exercise, physical activity and dietary manipulation.
  3. Use current equipment and experimental techniques to measure oxygen uptake and energy expenditure, blood metabolites, and haematological and inflammatory biomarker changes in response to exercise.
  4. Employ ethical and respectful working practices when measuring and monitoring factors relevant to health and exercise professions.


Lectures will cover theory and evidence relating to the physiology of exercise and health. 

Topics will include: energy systems, energy balance, substrate use during exercise, nutrition, limits to exercise tolerance, resistance exercise, redox biology, inflammation and exercise immunology. 

Laboratory classes will apply some of the principles covered in lectures into practice and will promote communication skills and group working. Fundamental laboratory skills will include: assessment of body composition, sub-maximal and maximal exercise testing, and how various biomarkers associated with metabolic health, inflammation and immune function, change in response to acute bouts of exercise.

Programme availability:

HL20538 is a Designated Essential Unit on the following programmes:

Department for Health
  • UHHL-AFB21 : BSc(Hons) Health and Exercise Science (Year 2)
  • UHHL-AKB21 : BSc(Hons) Health and Exercise Science with Professional Placement (Year 2)


  • This unit catalogue is applicable for the 2021/22 academic year only. Students continuing their studies into 2022/23 and beyond should not assume that this unit will be available in future years in the format displayed here for 2021/22.
  • Programmes and units are subject to change in accordance with normal University procedures.
  • Availability of units will be subject to constraints such as staff availability, minimum and maximum group sizes, and timetabling factors as well as a student's ability to meet any pre-requisite rules.
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