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Become A Clinical Exercise Specialist

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Working As A Clinical Exercise Specialist

  • Getting Information
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge
  • Assisting and Caring for Others
  • Performing General Physical Activities
  • Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships
  • Deal with People

  • $92,000

    Average Salary

What Does A Clinical Exercise Specialist Do

Exercise physiologists develop fitness and exercise programs that help patients recover from chronic diseases and improve cardiovascular function, body composition, and flexibility.

Duties

Exercise physiologists typically do the following:

  • Analyze a patient’s medical history to determine the best possible exercise and fitness regimen for the patient
  • Perform fitness and stress tests with medical equipment and analyze the resulting patient data
  • Measure blood pressure, oxygen usage, heart rhythm, and other key patient health indicators
  • Develop exercise programs to improve patient health
  • Supervise clinical tests to ensure patient safety

Exercise physiologists, sometimes called kinesiotherapists, work to improve overall patient health. Many of their patients suffer from health problems such as cardiovascular disease or pulmonary (lung) disease. Exercise physiologists provide health education and exercise plans to improve key health indicators.

Some physiologists work closely with primary care physicians, who may prescribe exercise regiments for their patients and refer them to exercise physiologists. The physiologists then work with patients to develop individualized treatment plans that will help the patients meet their health and fitness goals.

Exercise physiologists should not be confused with fitness trainers and instructors (including personal trainers) or athletic trainers.

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How To Become A Clinical Exercise Specialist

Exercise physiologists typically need at least a bachelor’s degree. Degree programs include science and health-related courses, such as biology, anatomy, kinesiology, and nutrition, as well as clinical work.

Education

Exercise physiologists typically need at least a bachelor’s degree. Master’s degree programs also are common. Both degree programs include courses in science and health-related subjects, such as biology, anatomy, kinesiology, and nutrition, as well as clinical work. In 2015, there were about 50 exercise programs accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP).

High school students interested in postsecondary exercise physiology programs should take courses in anatomy, physiology, and physics.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

Louisiana is the only state that requires exercise physiologists to be licensed, although many states have pending legislation to create formal licensure requirements.

The American Society of Exercise Physiologists (ASEP) offers the Exercise Physiologist Certified (EPC) certification, which physiologists can use to demonstrate their qualifications. Certification requires graduation with a relevant bachelor’s degree and coursework, completing the ASEP exam, and taking continuing education courses every 5 years.

The American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) also offers certifications for exercise physiologists: the Certified Clinical Exercise Physiologist (CEP) credential for candidates with a bachelor’s degree and the Registered Clinical Exercise Physiologist® (RCEP) for candidates with a master’s degree. Candidates also must have at least 400 or 600 hours of supervised clinical experience for the CEP and RCEP credential, respectively, and pass an exam.

Important Qualities

Compassion. Exercise physiologists work with patients who may be in considerable pain or discomfort. Therefore, they must be sympathetic while providing treatments and developing individualized exercise programs for the patients.

Decisionmaking skills. Exercise physiologists must be able to make informed clinical decisions because those decisions could affect the health or livelihood of patients.

Detail oriented. Exercise physiologists must be able to record detailed, accurate information about their patients’ conditions and about any progress the patients make. For example, they must ensure that patients are completing the appropriate stress tests or practicing the correct fitness regimen.

Interpersonal skills. Exercise physiologists must have strong interpersonal skills and be able to manage difficult situations. They must be able to communicate well with others, including physicians, patients, and patients’ families.

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Average Yearly Salary
$92,000
View Detailed Salary Report
$46,000
Min 10%
$92,000
Median 50%
$92,000
Median 50%
$92,000
Median 50%
$92,000
Median 50%
$92,000
Median 50%
$92,000
Median 50%
$92,000
Median 50%
$185,000
Max 90%
Best Paying Company
Bon Secours Health System
Highest Paying City
Greenville, SC
Highest Paying State
Wyoming
Avg Experience Level
4.1 years
How much does a Clinical Exercise Specialist make at top companies?
The national average salary for a Clinical Exercise Specialist in the United States is $92,751 per year or $45 per hour. Those in the bottom 10 percent make under $46,000 a year, and the top 10 percent make over $185,000.

Real Clinical Exercise Specialist Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Clinical Exercise Specialist Citimedical I, PLLC New York, NY Sep 17, 2016 $58,000
Clinical Exercise Specialist Evergreen Physical Therapy, PC New York, NY Sep 17, 2016 $46,707
Clinical Exercise Specialist Theramove, Inc. NY Sep 17, 2016 $46,707
Clinical Exercise Specialist Best Touch Pt PC New York, NY Aug 09, 2016 $46,707
Clinical Exercise Specialist Associated Workforce, LLC New York, NY Sep 17, 2016 $46,707

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Top Skills for A Clinical Exercise Specialist

  1. Patient Care
  2. Heart Disease
  3. Blood Pressure Data
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Managed heart and lung patients during exercise and taught education classes on risk-factor management.
  • Collaborated with multidisciplinary team to develop and implement community based phase III/adult fitness program.
  • Ensured patient safety and exercise efficiency through continuous tracking and analysis of EKG telemetry and exercise blood pressure data.
  • Monitored vitals to include heart rate and blood pressure as well as cardiac function via telemetry.
  • Oversee phase III and MedFit Programs, personal training and writing exercise programs.

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Top 10 Best States for Clinical Exercise Specialists

  1. Nevada
  2. Rhode Island
  3. Alaska
  4. Wyoming
  5. District of Columbia
  6. Idaho
  7. Maine
  8. New Mexico
  9. Vermont
  10. North Dakota
  • (46 jobs)
  • (27 jobs)
  • (11 jobs)
  • (12 jobs)
  • (51 jobs)
  • (26 jobs)
  • (34 jobs)
  • (29 jobs)
  • (13 jobs)
  • (23 jobs)

Clinical Exercise Specialist Demographics

Gender

Female

48.3%

Male

44.1%

Unknown

7.6%
Ethnicity

White

64.5%

Hispanic or Latino

16.0%

Black or African American

10.3%

Asian

5.4%

Unknown

3.8%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

36.4%

German

27.3%

Swedish

18.2%

French

18.2%
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Clinical Exercise Specialist Education

Schools

California University of Pennsylvania

20.0%

Norfolk State University

10.0%

University of Texas at Tyler

7.5%

Benedictine University

7.5%

Olivet Nazarene University

5.0%

Eastern Washington University

5.0%

Wake Forest University

5.0%

Carroll University

5.0%

East Stroudsburg University of Pennsylvania

5.0%

American College

5.0%

Central Washington University

2.5%

Eastern Michigan University

2.5%

University of Northern Colorado

2.5%

University of Florida

2.5%

Neumann University

2.5%

University of the Sciences

2.5%

Rocky Mountain University of Health Professions

2.5%

Ohio University -

2.5%

Illinois State University

2.5%

Western Governors University

2.5%
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Majors

Kinesiology

43.2%

Exercise Physiology

11.0%

Health Education

6.8%

Physical Therapy

6.8%

Nursing

5.1%

Education

4.2%

Business

3.4%

Occupational Therapy

2.5%

Clinical Psychology

2.5%

Public Health Education

2.5%

Public Health

1.7%

Medical Technician

1.7%

Mental Health Counseling

1.7%

Physician Assistant

1.7%

Management

0.8%

Psychology

0.8%

Nursing Assistants

0.8%

Health Sciences And Services

0.8%

Food And Nutrition

0.8%

Biology

0.8%
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Degrees

Masters

40.3%

Bachelors

37.2%

Other

14.0%

Doctorate

4.7%

Associate

3.9%
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