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  • Writer's pictureDanielle McDonald

So...what exactly is an Exercise Physiologist?

Updated: Oct 18, 2018

We all know that exercise and physical activity are good for us. You may have even heard the phrase ‘exercise is medicine’. But when I tell people what I do for work, I am quite often met with an awkward smile or a blank stare or an "Oh...ok... cool". Sometimes the curious ones will progress to ask, “what exactly is an Exercise Physiologist?” Well, I would be more than happy to answer that question! An Exercise Physiologist, or EP, is an allied health practitioner who prescribes the wonder-drug we call exercise. We are trained to use exercise as a treatment for a wide variety of health conditions, injuries and life-stages.

There are so many ways in which movement can benefit our bodies and our minds. Whether you are being treated for cancer, experiencing depression, trying to reduce your blood pressure, recovering from a back injury, navigating the world of exercise with a pelvic organ prolapse or simply trying to increase your overall fitness…an EP can help! We are trained to understand what is happening within the body during times of illness and injury and as the body undergoes significant changes, for example during pregnancy or through ageing. We use this knowledge to select the best exercises for each individual and to highlight the activities that should be avoided. We like to keep you safe! We are also in-the-know about the pharmaceutical medications you may be taking and how exercise may interact with these.

EPs are also trained in health behaviour change. This means that in addition to prescribing the right type of movement, we also have the tools to help you actually get out there and DO the exercise. We understand that exercise and physical activity participation can often be hindered by many barriers. We get it. Life gets in the way (it does for us too!). But we have strategies to help you navigate those barriers and get you moving. Because after all, the best exercise program is the one you actually do!

So, if your curiosity has the better of you and you’d like to know more, get in touch with me, and we can chat about how exercise might benefit you!

Danielle McDonald

Accredited Exercise Physiologist

M.Clin.Ex.Phys (Rehab), AEP, AES, ESSAM

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