Coronavirus (Covid-19) Information

Module JXH-2024:
Sport & Exercise Physio

Module Facts

Run by School of Sport, Health and Exercise Sciences

20 Credits or 10 ECTS Credits

Semester 1

Organiser: Dr Jennifer Cooney

Overall aims and purpose

Understanding the human body’s acute and chronic physiological adaptations to exercise is essential to achieve optimal performance. In this module you will learn about the key physiological principles that underpin optimal sport and exercise performance and develop your competency performing key laboratory tests that are commonly used to assess the energy metabolism, cardio-respiratory fitness, anaerobic capacity, anaerobic power and muscular strength of athletes. Laboratory practical’s will help you to understand how to interpret this key physiological data and how the results obtained can be used to inform training, improve performance and even predict performance.

Course content

You will learn about the acute and chronic physiological adaptations to exercise, this includes the muscular, cardio-respiratory, neural, metabolic and thermoregulatory responses to exercise. You will learn about the key factors that can limit performance and the training methods that can be used to achieve optimal performance. Laboratory sessions will provide you with an opportunity to develop your practical skills where you will learn how to perform a range of key physiological assessments which include, how to assess energy metabolism, aerobic capacity, anaerobic capacity, anaerobic power and muscular strength. You will learn how to interpret the data collected and how it can be used to inform training, improve performance and even predict performance.

Module failure that prevents you passing the year will require resit assessment and attendance at Supplementary Assessment Week (July 2021).

Assessment Criteria


Basic understanding of acute and/or chronic physiological adaptations of the body to exercise. Work of this standard is largely descriptive containing no or largely incorrect discussion of physiological mechanisms. Primary sources are scare. Important methods are described. Data is presented descriptively. This work will follow basic format and contain some poor spelling and grammar.


– Good knowledge and understanding of acute and/or chronic physiological adaptations of the body to exercise. Ideas/arguments are well presented but few are original. Physiological mechanisms are identified and discussed. Pertinent references are included. A good ability to reconstruct material from literature will be evident. Data is presented clearly with few interpretation errors. Formatting will be very good with few errors. This work will be written in a scientific style and will contain few typographical or grammar errors.


Deep knowledge and understanding of acute and/or chronic physiological adaptations of the body to exercise. Command of subject but with minor gaps in knowledge. Pertinent physiological mechanism (s) will be clear and supported by good use of primary references. Evidence of wide reading and a good ability to reconstruct material from literature will be evident. Where relevant important aspects of methods are considered and discussed. Formatting will be almost perfect.

Learning outcomes

  1. Demonstrate an understanding of acute muscular, neural, metabolic, cardio-respiratory and thermoregulatory responses to exercise.

  2. Demonstrate an understanding of the physiological adaptations to endurance and strength training.

  3. Understand how to assess strength, aerobic and anaerobic capacity with laboratory tests, and what limits exercise performance.

  4. Effectively communicate physiological changes in a written laboratory report.

Assessment Methods

Type Name Description Weight
COURSEWORK Laboratory Report

You will need to submit through Turnitin a laboratory report from the laboratory session on assessment of ventilatory and lactate thresholds. This lab report should be a maximum of 1000 words and include the following sections: a title, abstract, methods, results, discussion and a reference list. In your results, you may include a maximum of 2 figures (and/ or tables).

COURSEWORK Abstract (lab 1) and Method (lab 2)

You must submit an abstract on Lab 1, this should include a title, introduction, methods, results and conclusion and you must submit a methods section for lab 2. This should include a section on particpants, experimental design and data handling.

COURSEWORK Results (lab 3) and SAQ (lab 4)

You must submit a results section for lab 3. This should include 100 words of text and 1 figure and 1 table or 2 figures. You must also answer a short answer question related to lab 4 (max 300 words).


This 2-hr exam will involve multiple choice questions (MCQ) and short answer questions (SAQ; <300 words). This assessment will be scheduled during the formal exam period (January 2021). The exact date TBC.


Teaching and Learning Strategy

Private study

Reading, catching up on note taking, preparing for the laboratory sessions, preparing for the summative exams, and completion of the summative assessments


This course will be taught through a combination of lectures, seminar, tutorials and workshops. For September 2020 we will be starting the academic year with a blended learning approach in response to Covid 19. For the most up to date information on this please look at


3 x 2 hour labortory sessions, 1 x 3 hour laboratory session


Transferable skills

  • Literacy - Proficiency in reading and writing through a variety of media
  • Numeracy - Proficiency in using numbers at appropriate levels of accuracy
  • Computer Literacy - Proficiency in using a varied range of computer software
  • Self-Management - Able to work unsupervised in an efficient, punctual and structured manner. To examine the outcomes of tasks and events, and judge levels of quality and importance
  • Exploring - Able to investigate, research and consider alternatives
  • Inter-personal - Able to question, actively listen, examine given answers and interact sensitevely with others
  • Critical analysis & Problem Solving - Able to deconstruct and analyse problems or complex situations. To find solutions to problems through analyses and exploration of all possibilities using appropriate methods, rescources and creativity.
  • Safety-Consciousness - Having an awareness of your immediate environment, and confidence in adhering to health and safety regulations
  • Presentation - Able to clearly present information and explanations to an audience. Through the written or oral mode of communication accurately and concisely.
  • Teamwork - Able to constructively cooperate with others on a common task, and/or be part of a day-to-day working team
  • Management - Able to utilise, coordinate and control resources (human, physical and/or financial)
  • Argument - Able to put forward, debate and justify an opinion or a course of action, with an individual or in a wider group setting
  • Self-awareness & Reflectivity - Having an awareness of your own strengths, weaknesses, aims and objectives. Able to regularly review, evaluate and reflect upon the performance of yourself and others
  • Leadership - Able to lead and manage, develop action plans and objectives, offer guidance and direction to others, and cope with the related pressures such authority can result in

Subject specific skills

  • research and assess paradigms, theories, principles, concepts and factual information, and apply such skills in explaining and solving problems
  • critically assess and evaluate data and evidence in the context of research methodologies and data sources
  • describe, synthesise, interpret, analyse and evaluate information and data relevant to a professional or vocational context
  • plan, design, execute and communicate a sustained piece of independent intellectual work, which provides evidence of critical engagement with, and interpretation of, appropriate data
  • work effectively independently and with others
  • take and demonstrate responsibility for their own learning and continuing personal and professional development
  • self-appraise and reflect on practice
  • plan and design practical activities using appropriate techniques and procedures whilst demonstrating high levels of relevant skills
  • project manage and execute practical activities using appropriate techniques and procedures whilst demonstrating high levels of relevant skills
  • recognise and respond to moral, ethical, sustainability and safety issues that directly pertain to the context of study including relevant legislation and professional codes of conduct
  • demonstrate evidence of competence in the scientific methods of enquiry, and interpretation and analysis of relevant data and statistical outputs.
  • develop transferable skills of relevance to careers outside of sport, health and exercise sciences.
  • communicate succinctly at a level appropriate to different audiences.
  • accurately interpret case study data
  • develop justifiable and/or evidence-based interventions
  • develop effective learning aids
  • demonstrate effective robust data collection methods


Talis Reading list

Reading list

Kenney L. Wilmore J.H., and Costill D.L. (2015). Physiology of Sport and Exercise. Human Kinetics. Champaign, IL.

This is not an extensive list and other suggested books and journal articles will be provided in the lecture. Please check the blackboard site regularly for important announcements, and formative and summative assignment details.

Courses including this module

Compulsory in courses:

Optional in courses: