Skip to Content

Exercise Science


The health and fitness industry has become a booming, multibillion-dollar business, as more and more individuals, schools, and workplaces turn to exercise and nutrition programs to improve productivity and stem the growing rates of obesity and chronic diseases in the United States. It takes motivated, knowledgeable professionals to develop effective, science-based solutions that inspire their clients to make meaningful change and improve their physical and emotional well-being. If you have a passion to help people live better, healthier lives, you might be the ideal candidate for Hofstra’s BS in Exercise Science program.

Your Hofstra degree will give you a background in the scientific concepts of fitness, exercise, disease risk reduction, nutrition, and the techniques used to evaluate health status. You’ll have numerous opportunities for real-world experience – in the classroom with the guidance of dedicated faculty who are both practitioners and scholars, with a vast array of campus clubs and activities, and through many internship opportunities on Long Island and in nearby New York City, just a short train ride away. A strong foundation in the liberal arts and sciences will also broaden your perspective and strengthen your skills in critical thinking, problem solving, and quantitative reasoning.

You’ll be prepared for numerous career options, including athletic trainer, fitness instructor, strength and conditioning coach, health coach, nutritionist, or physical therapy or occupational therapy aide. You can work with athletic teams and in settings such as hospitals and clinics, corporate wellness programs, health and fitness centers, military science and rehabilitation programs, and cardiac rehabilitation programs. You’ll also be prepared to take certification exams and pursue advanced degrees in sports science, athletic training, physical therapy, occupational therapy, cardiac and pulmonary rehabilitation, medicine, physician assistant studies, and other health and wellness disciplines.

Employment in health care is projected to grow much faster than the average for all occupations, according to U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Nationally, the median salary for recreational therapists is $47,680 annually, and job growth is projected to increase by 15% by 2026. For, exercise physiologists, the national median salary is $49,090, and job growth is expected to rise about 13%. The demand for physical therapists is projected to increase by 28%, and the national median salary for the profession is $86,850.

Hofstra University also has a unique relationship with Northwell Health, one of the country's largest healthcare systems and our partner in the Donald and Barbara Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/Northwell and the Hofstra Northwell School of Nursing and Physician Assistant Studies. With such a talented faculty, numerous opportunities for interdisciplinary collaboration, and a diverse body of students pursuing careers in health, you’ll find yourself in great company throughout your time here.

What’s more, having so many health-related programs in one place means there are more than enough special conferences, guest lecturers, and other offerings to add dimension to your educational experience, as well as ensuring that you are taught by the ideal blend of full-time faculty members and working professionals.


With the BS in Exercise Science, you’ll gain a strong scientific foundation as well as expertise in the practical application of the discipline. You’ll study natural science, human anatomy and physiology, exercise physiology, applied nutrition, and movement analysis as you learn how to design and implement safe and effective fitness programs for a wide variety of populations.

As an exercise science major, you’ll:

  • Study wellness models and intervention strategies for stress reduction.
  • Gain an advanced understanding of resistance training exercises commonly used by recreational and athletic populations, as well as emerging alternatives to traditional training.
  • Earn American Red Cross certification through a course designed to develop first aid and CPR skills and knowledge of injury and illness prevention. (An advanced first aid, CPR, and AED certification course is also available to prepare future healthcare practitioners to serve as first responders for persons with acute injury or illness.)
  • Spend a semester working as a student fitness trainer, developing a personalized fitness program for two assigned clients, with the guidance of a faculty advisor.
  • Explore specific areas of interest to you through dozens of elective course options on topics such as consumer health, aging and long-term care, diet therapy, women’s health, and global health issues. You can also earn credit for classes in scuba, self-defense, Tai Chi Chuan, swimming, or Hatha yoga.

With the program’s strong emphasis on the liberal arts, students can use coursework to complete minors that will complement their career interests, in areas such as business, dance, community health, physical education, biology, psychology, sociology, nutrition, or disability studies. There is also a minor in exercise science for students pursuing other majors.

As a senior or new graduate, you’ll also be prepared to sit for certification exams with organizations such as the National Strength and Conditioning Association, American College of Sports Medicine, American Council on Exercise, International Society of Sports Nutrition, Canadian Society for Exercise Physiology, Aerobics and Fitness Association of America, The Cooper Institute, and Applied Academy of Personal Training Education. Earning certification from any of these organizations sets you apart as having achieved a distinct level of expertise in your area of interest.

Up-to-date information about required classes and more is available in the Hofstra Bulletin.

BS in Exercise Science Requirements

Recent Alumni Outcomes

Recent Exercise Science alumni work at S.T.A.R.S. Sports Training and Rehabilitation Services, Weill Cornell Medical Center, NYU Winthrop Hospital, Catholic Health Services, Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, AmeriCorps VISTA, and the Nassau County Department of Health, among other places. Those pursuing graduate degrees study at institutions such as Georgetown University, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York University, Seton Hall University, and Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine, among others.

96% jobs, grad school, or both
88% accept a position within six months
$47K average salary*
Get More Info on Program Outcomes
*Represents median salary for the first year following graduation


student talking

Internships offer real-world experiences beyond the classroom and prepare students for professional careers. Students in the Exercise Science program complete a senior-year field experience in approved fitness/wellness centers or in programs related to strength and conditioning, physical therapy, corporate fitness, and cardiac rehabilitation.

Your faculty advisor will work closely with you to identify internship opportunities that best suit your abilities and career goals. Our students have recently interned with organizations such as:

  • Cohen’s Children’s Medical Center
  • Developmental Disabilities Institute, Inc.
  • Hospital for Special Surgery
  • Long Island State Veterans Home
  • Mount Sinai Health System
  • Nassau County Department of Human Services
  • Northwell Health

In addition, you can enrich your experience, share ideas, network, and organize service-learning opportunities through pre-professional clubs such as the Hofstra Athletic Training Society (HATS) and Exercise Is Medicine, as well as other healthcare-oriented organizations such as the Hofstra Health and Wellness Club, Powerlifting Club, and various intramural and club sports, spirit support, and recreational activities.

Meet Michelle Blum

After a year of studying communication, Michelle switched her major to exercise science when she realized she had a passion for fitness, exercise, and healthy living. She soon turned a part-time job with an athletic training company into a full-time position as its director of nutrition. Learn more about how she was inspired to launch her own successful nutrition and weight loss consulting company called Nutrish Mish, where she now gives back by training Hofstra interns to be tomorrow’s exercise science professionals.

Read More About Michelle

Contact Us
Hofstra Events

Translate Our Site

Use Google Translate to read our site in your language.


If you are having any difficulty using this website, please contact the Help Desk at or by calling 516-463-7777. Please identify the webpage address or URL and the specific problems you have encountered and we will address the issue. If you have a disability-related question regarding accessing the website, contact Student Access Services at or call 516-463-7075.

About Hofstra

Hofstra University is an EO/AA/ADA educator and employer.
HOFSTRA UNIVERSITY // Hempstead, New York 11549-1000 // (516) 463-6600 © Hofstra University All Rights Reserved