The Strength and Conditioning concentration is designed for current practitioners, aspiring strength and conditioning coaches and athletic performance coaches. Our comprehensive program exceeds the requirements for the standard National Strength & Conditioning Association (NSCA) Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) certification and will prepare students for advanced certifications.

Our Strength and Conditioning concentration can prepare students for a variety of career options including:

  • Strength and Conditioning Coach
  • Sports Performance Specialist
  • Athletic Performance Coach

The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that careers for coaches and scouts are predicted to increase by 12% between 2019 and 2029, which is much faster than average. Our online MS in Exercise and Sport Science program of study will prepare individuals who are committed to effecting change in the health and fitness industries and who take a holistic approach to exercise, wellness and fitness.

The Strength and Conditioning concentration can be completed in as little as a year and a half.

St. Francis College is ranked at the top of the U.S. News & World Report Best Colleges Rankings in several categories:

                  • #8 in Best Value Schools
                  • #5 in Best Colleges for Veterans
                  • #3 in Top Performers on Social Mobility
                  • #13 in Regional Colleges North

St. Francis College is ranked at the top of the U.S. News & World Report Best Colleges Rankings in several categories:

#8 in Best Value Schools

#5 in Best Colleges for Veterans

#3 in Top Performers on Social Mobility

#13 in Regional Colleges North

Flexible, convenient 24/7 online learning platform

Financial aid available to those who qualify

CHAT WITH A SPECIALIST

Program Overview

Course Number Course Name Credit Hours
EXM- 6010 Applied Research in Exercise and Sports Science

Learn the foundations of research as it pertains to exercise and sports sciences. 

Students will learn selected research techniques and designs utilized in exercise science research with emphasis on general statistics, interpretation of data, research ethics, scientific writing, and library use.

Course Takeaways

  • Discuss the essential steps of the scientific method of inquiry.
  • Demonstrate proficiency in finding and evaluating research resources on desired topics.
  • Identify the major types of research designs used in exercise science research
  • Analyze research reports in relevant literature and suggest ways to improve literature review, research design, and data collection procedures.
  • Complete research ethics web–based training course.
3
EXM-6020 Exercise and Sport Nutrition

Learn the nutrition information you need to improve the health of every type of client. 

This course explores the relationships between nutrition, energy metabolism, and exercise and sport performance, with an in-depth analysis of dietary and nutritional supplementation. 

Course Takeaways

  • Describe the bioenergetic metabolic processes of the cell and how it changes in response to various exercise intensities.
  • Describe the nutritional needs of endurance, strength, power athletes, and special populations.
  • Assess nutritional needs of physically active individuals.
  • Discuss the micronutrient needs of physically active individuals.
  • Analyze current literature in sports nutrition research.
3
EXM-6210 Sports Injury Prevention

Learn the foundations of injury prevention in athletes.

This course will explore program design principles for corrective exercise training, with an emphasis on the National Academy of Sports Medicine’s Corrective Exercise Continuum, but additional program/assessment strategies will be discussed.   

Course Takeaways

  • Describe corrective exercise strategies for the foot and ankle impairments.
  • Describe corrective exercise strategies for the knee impairments.
  • Describe corrective exercise strategies for the lumbo-pelvic-hip impairments.
  • Describe corrective exercise strategies for the shoulder, elbow, and wrist impairments
  • Describe corrective exercise strategies for cervical spine impairments.
3
EXM-6220 Program Design in Strength and Conditioning

Learn how to develop a program to best fit your client’s strength and conditioning needs.

In this course, students will explore the principles of resistance training and periodization, develop periodized programs based on foundational and current literature, and critique and justify programming selections.  

Course Takeaways

  • Utilize current and foundational literature to support and justify programming decisions.
  • Analyze advanced periodization models.
  • Develop annual plans based on sport specificity and evidence-based practice.
3
EXM-6230 Functional Movement Assessment

Take a deep dive into the details of human movement, kinesiology, and biomechanics.

During this course students will learn the application of mechanical principles to development of human movement, with emphasis on kinematics and kinetics.   

Course Takeaways

  • Define mechanics, biomechanics, and kinesiology and differentiate among their uses in the analysis of human movement.
  • Demonstrate proficiency in kinematic and kinetic analyses of select movements.
  • Discuss functional biomechanics during human movement.
  • Explain the pathokinesiological model as it relates to human movement dysfunctions.
3
EXM-6120 Principles of Strength and Conditioning

Gain a strong background in strength and conditioning, from fitness testing to recommending the right training. 

Explore the foundations of strength and conditioning as established by the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA).  Design and critique strength and conditioning programs based on NSCA guidelines.  Designed to prepare students interested in becoming a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) through the NSCA.

Course Takeaways

  • Recommend programming based on how aerobic and anaerobic training affect muscular strength, muscular endurance, power, flexibility, and motor performance.
  • Conduct and assess strength and conditioning field tests. Develop recommendations based on test results.
  • Demonstrate and critique traditional and non-traditional exercise techniques.
  • Design an effective resistance, plyometric, speed and agility, and aerobic training program.
3
EXM-6250 Special Topics in Advanced Strength and Conditioning

Gain a foundation in resistance training and different strength and conditioning programs.

In this course, students will explore the principles of resistance training and periodization, develop periodized programs based on foundational and current literature, and critique and justify programming selections.

Course Takeaways

  • Utilize current and foundational literature to support and justify programming decisions.
  • Analyze advanced periodization models.
  • Develop annual plans based on sport specificity and evidence-based practice.
3
EXM-6990 Practicum

Learn how to build a sports nutrition program by planning a case study on a member or your community. 

This course examines the planning and implementation of a sports nutrition program. Students are required to complete a nutrition assessment and planning case study on a member of their community.

Course Takeaways

  • Apply methods of assessing body size and composition, dietary intake, physical activity and energy expenditure
  • Perform a nutrition assessment
  • Based on a nutrition assessment, plan a protocol to determine an individual’s nutritional status and make recommendations
  • Prepare for and complete a national exam in sports nutrition
3
EXM-6030 Leadership: Theory and Practice

Grow your leadership skills, and learn how to build your own fitness business.

This course explores the interfaces between human resource management, operations, marketing, and entrepreneurship within the context of entrepreneurial, for-profit and nonprofit fitness and health promotion ventures. Students will develop a business plan for potential funding. 

Course Takeaways

  • Define entrepreneurship and provide examples of various forms.
  • Discuss critical components involved in hiring and retaining employees.
  • Discuss the components of an effective marketing plan.
  • Develop a business plan for a fitness and health promotion venture.
3
EXM-6998 Capstone 6
  • $500 per credit hour
  • Military: $450 per credit hour
  • 33 credit hours
  • Transfer up to 25 credit hours

Next Start Date: September 13, 2021

Admissions Requirements

Bachelor’s degree required. A GPA of 2.5 is required. Students entering the program will be required to have completed a Biology course in the undergraduate curriculum. If not, students will have to complete a Biology course (Intro to Anatomy and Physiology) as part of the entry requirements.

Transfer Students
Transfer students seeking a master’s degree must present an official transcript of all previous course work.

There are a variety of careers available for those who achieve their MS in Exercise & Movement Science Strength and Conditioning concentration. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment for coaches and scouts are expected to grow 12% from 2019 to 2029, much faster than the average for other industries.

Within the exercise science field, graduates can pursue careers as:

  • Strength and Conditioning Coach
  • Sports Performance Specialist
  • Athletic Performance Coach

While some may require extra certification or experience, a Masters of Science in Exercise & Movement Science will put you on the right track to meeting your goals.

Tuition Discount
Active duty military and veterans are eligible to receive a $50/credit-hour tuition discount, lowering their tuition to $450/credit hour.

Top College

St. Francis has been ranked #5 on US News World & Report’s Best Colleges for Veterans list. We are also proud members of the Yellow Ribbon program. Learn more about our military benefits here. 

EXM- 6010

Applied Research in Exercise and Sports Science

Learn the foundations of research as it pertains to exercise and sports sciences. 

Students will learn selected research techniques and designs utilized in exercise science research with emphasis on general statistics, interpretation of data, research ethics, scientific writing, and library use.

Course Takeaways

  • Discuss the essential steps of the scientific method of inquiry.
  • Demonstrate proficiency in finding and evaluating research resources on desired topics.
  • Identify the major types of research designs used in exercise science research
  • Analyze research reports in relevant literature and suggest ways to improve literature review, research design, and data collection procedures.
  • Complete research ethics web–based training course.

EXM-6020

Exercise and Sport Nutrition

Learn the nutrition information you need to improve the health of every type of client. 

This course explores the relationships between nutrition, energy metabolism, and exercise and sport performance, with an in-depth analysis of dietary and nutritional supplementation.

Course Takeaways

  • Describe the bioenergetic metabolic processes of the cell and how it changes in response to various exercise intensities.
  • Describe the nutritional needs of endurance, strength, power athletes, and special populations.
  • Assess nutritional needs of physically active individuals.
  • Discuss the micronutrient needs of physically active individuals.
  • Analyze current literature in sports nutrition research.

EXM-6210

Group Dynamics in Exercise and Sport

Learn the foundations of injury prevention in athletes.

This course will explore program design principles for corrective exercise training, with an emphasis on the National Academy of Sports Medicine’s Corrective Exercise Continuum, but additional program/assessment strategies will be discussed.

Course Takeaways

  • Describe corrective exercise strategies for the foot and ankle impairments.
  • Describe corrective exercise strategies for the knee impairments.
  • Describe corrective exercise strategies for the lumbo-pelvic-hip impairments.
  • Describe corrective exercise strategies for the shoulder, elbow, and wrist impairments
  • Describe corrective exercise strategies for cervical spine impairments.

EXM-6220

Program Design in Strength and Conditioning

Learn how to develop a program to best fit your client’s strength and conditioning needs.

In this course, students will explore the principles of resistance training and periodization, develop periodized programs based on foundational and current literature, and critique and justify programming selections. 

Course Takeaways

  • Utilize current and foundational literature to support and justify programming decisions.
  • Analyze advanced periodization models.
  • Develop annual plans based on sport specificity and evidence-based practice.

EXM-6230

Functional Movement Assessment

Take a deep dive into the details of human movement, kinesiology, and biomechanics.

During this course students will learn the application of mechanical principles to development of human movement, with emphasis on kinematics and kinetics.

Course Takeaways

  • Define mechanics, biomechanics, and kinesiology and differentiate among their uses in the analysis of human movement.
  • Demonstrate proficiency in kinematic and kinetic analyses of select movements.
  • Discuss functional biomechanics during human movement.
  • Explain the pathokinesiological model as it relates to human movement dysfunctions.

EXM-6120

Principles of Strength and Conditioning

Gain a strong background in strength and conditioning, from fitness testing to recommending the right training. 

Explore the foundations of strength and conditioning as established by the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA).  Design and critique strength and conditioning programs based on NSCA guidelines.  Designed to prepare students interested in becoming a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) through the NSCA.

Course Takeaways

  • Recommend programming based on how aerobic and anaerobic training affect muscular strength, muscular endurance, power, flexibility, and motor performance.
  • Conduct and assess strength and conditioning field tests. Develop recommendations based on test results.
  • Demonstrate and critique traditional and non-traditional exercise techniques.
  • Design an effective resistance, plyometric, speed and agility, and aerobic training program.

EXM-6250

Special Topics in Advanced Strength and Conditioning

Gain a foundation in resistance training and different strength and conditioning programs.

In this course, students will explore the principles of resistance training and periodization, develop periodized programs based on foundational and current literature, and critique and justify programming selections.

Course Takeaways

  • Utilize current and foundational literature to support and justify programming decisions.
  • Analyze advanced periodization models.
  • Develop annual plans based on sport specificity and evidence-based practice.

EXM-6990

Practicum

Learn how to build a sports nutrition program by planning a case study on a member or your community. 

This course examines the planning and implementation of a sports nutrition program. Students are required to complete a nutrition assessment and planning case study on a member of their community.

Course Takeaways

  • Apply methods of assessing body size and composition, dietary intake, physical activity and energy expenditure
  • Perform a nutrition assessment
  • Based on a nutrition assessment, plan a protocol to determine an individual’s nutritional status and make recommendations
  • Prepare for and complete a national exam in sports nutrition

EXM-6030

Leadership: Theory and Practice

Grow your leadership skills and learn how to build your own fitness business.

This course explores the interfaces between human resource management, operations, marketing, and entrepreneurship within the context of entrepreneurial, for-profit and nonprofit fitness and health promotion ventures. Students will develop a business plan for potential funding.

Course Takeaways

  • Define entrepreneurship and provide examples of various forms.
  • Discuss critical components involved in hiring and retaining employees.
  • Discuss the components of an effective marketing plan.
  • Develop a business plan for a fitness and health promotion venture.

EXM-6998

Capstone

  • $500 per credit hour
  • Military: $450 per credit hour
  • 33 credit hours
  • Transfer up to 25 credit hours

Next Start Date: September 13, 2021

Admissions Requirements
Bachelor’s degree required. A GPA of 2.5 is required. Students entering the program will be required to have completed a Biology course in the undergraduate curriculum. If not, students will have to complete a Biology course (Intro to Anatomy and Physiology) as part of the entry requirements.

Transfer Students
Transfer students seeking a master’s degree must present an official transcript of all previous course work.

There are a variety of careers available for those who achieve their MS in Exercise & Movement Science Strength and Conditioning concentration. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment for coaches and scouts are expected to grow 12% from 2019 to 2029, much faster than the average for other industries.

Within the exercise science field, graduates can pursue careers as:

  • Strength and Conditioning Coach
  • Sports Performance Specialist
  • Athletic Performance Coach

While some may require extra certification or experience, a Masters of Science in Exercise & Movement Science will put you on the right track to meeting your goals.

Tuition Discount
Active duty military and veterans are eligible to receive a $50/credit-hour tuition discount, lowering their tuition to $450/credit hour.

Top College

St. Francis has been ranked #5 on US News World & Report’s Best Colleges for Veterans list. We are also proud members of the Yellow Ribbon program. Learn more about our military benefits here.

Meet Some of Your Instructors

John McNamara, PhD
John McNamara, PhDProfessor
Dr. John McNamara received his doctorate in kinesiology from Temple University in Philadelphia. He is a Level One Certified Olympic Weightlifting Coach and holds NSCA CSCS and CPT certifications. His areas of research include…

Read More
Gerard Shaw, EdD
Gerard Shaw, EdDAssociate Professor
Professor Shaw’s background is in athletics and physical education. He earned both a doctorate in sport psychology and master’s degree in exercise physiology from Columbia University, Teacher’s…

Read More

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