Health and Exercise Science

Studying health and exercise science will provide you with a solid understanding of human physiology, human movement and the role exercise plays in human health.

Health and exercise science at Roanoke prepares students for a diverse array of careers, as you build a broad foundation of scientific inquiry and critical thinking. You’ll explore the physiological, biochemical, psychological, behavioral and mechanical principles of applied exercise science.

In concert with courses in human physiology, movement science and fitness/wellness, you'll be encouraged to pursue research and internship experiences in kinesiology, exercise science or the rehabilitation sciences, and participate in projects that are presented at regional and national conferences. Internship options are also available on and off campus at a variety of work sites, community health organizations, and fitness, clinical and rehabilitative facilities.

Through a diverse array of real-world learning opportunities, you’ll be positioned to make a real difference before and after graduation. Health and exercise science students are prepared for careers in medicine, rehabilitation, public health, movement science, wellness, nutrition, sport performance and more.

We offer a Bachelor of Arts (B.A.), a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) and a minor in health and exercise science.

Cutting Edge Facilities

Health and exercise science can open the door to advanced study in graduate school and to careers in clinical and rehabilitative specialty fields, fitness and wellness or performance coaching.

When You Get That Spark | Sarah Matteo

Work with faculty

professor working with a student

Alongside our faculty members, both in the classroom, research lab, or and in the community, you’ll experience innovation in action. We design immersive experiences for students to gain real-world learning through professional shadowing and internships, cutting-edge research experiences, and collaborative projects with community partners in health care, sport performance, city government and the nonprofit sector. Through community partnerships Campus resources, such as our state-of-the-art Human Performance Lab, the Center For Community Health Innovation, and the Work-Study Research Program, provide multiple avenues of support for student engagement, including paid internships and research experience, and funding for materials for students to explore their own research topics.

Sample Course Offerings:


Ackley recognized as one of Virginia’s outstanding faculty for 2022

Dr. Liz Ackley is one of 12 professors from Virginia colleges and universities recognized with Outstanding Faculty Awards from The State Council of Higher Education (SCHEV) and Dominion Energy. The award will be presented in March.  

Students present health research at national conference

Groundbreaking work about public health in Roanoke earned students a spot at a National Institutes of Health conference.

Student research leads to ‘transformative’ project in Roanoke

Thanks to the work of a Roanoke faculty member and her students, a neighborhood in need could be getting a grocery store, health care and more.

Roanoke lays the groundwork for Olympian

Shelley Olds winning a bike race

Shelley Olds '03 has always placed athletics near the top of her must-do list. At Roanoke, the Health and Human Performance major was captain of the Women's Soccer Team. Two years after graduation, she was introduced to cycling. Since then, she has soared, becoming one of the highest-ranked women's cyclists in the world. In 2012, she reached the pinnacle, competing in the London Olympic Games as a member of the U.S. Women's Road Race team. Currently, she is a member of the Bigla Pro Cycling Team, training and competing from her home base in L'Estartit, Spain, her sights set on the 2016 Olympic Games in Brazil. "I believe I was prepared to become a professional athlete and Olympian by many of the experiences I had at Roanoke College," Olds says.