Moving Matters in Health


Course Objective

The student acquires knowledge about the relationship between (the
absence of) exercise and physical and psychological health. This
includes understanding theories of motivation and goal setting,
understanding the mechanisms of exercise physiology and understanding
the mechanisms behind inactivity-related pathology.
Students are able to motivate the chances of success of interventions
designed to promote health through exercise, using arguments from
multiple scientific disciplines (e.g. physiology, psychology). Students
are able to evaluate human exercise using different methods described in
Students can design an exercise intervention aimed at a sedentary target
group and can motivate the rationale of this intervention using recent
knowledge of (exercise) psychology and (patho-)physiology.

Course Content

Physical inactivity has become a major global problem. In the
Netherlands alone, over 50% of the adult population is insufficiently
active. This can have severe consequences for health, as inactivity can
result in diseases such as cardiomyopathy, obesity, diabetes and
eventually death. Understanding and resolving this multifactorial
problem requires a multidisciplinary approach.
During the course “Moving Matters in Health” several aspects of this big
health issue will be addressed from different scientific perspectives.
The course will provide insight into the relation between physical
activity and physiological and psychological health. Special attention
will be given to the practical implications of this knowledge but also
to the problems that arise when activity programs need to be implemented
in an overly sedentary population. In this course, through several
lectures and practicals, you will seek for answers to questions such as:
- How can we motivate people to exercise and what goals should be set?
- Via which mechanisms does inactivity lead to health problems?
- What are the physiological effects of exercise and how can those
effects help prevent or revert so-called lifestyle diseases?
- How does exercise influence the brain?
- When is it save to exercise?
- How can you objectively and validly quantify physical activity?
- What should a potentially successful exercise intervention program
look like?

Teaching Methods

The course is a combination of lectures and practicals. The course
requires active participation of the students. For the majority of
lectures students are expected to read and digest the literature prior
to the lectures. In several lectures, actual topics will be discussed on
the basis of statements. Students are asked to prepare a substantiated
opinion on those statements related to the topics at hand.
During the course, students will develop an exercise intervention, which
will be facilitated by two practicals. During the exercise physiology
practicals, students will learn to assess physical activity using
objective and subjective measurements.

The total study duration of the course is 168 hours (6 ECTS), which is
approximately specified as follows:
Lectures: 24
Practicals exercise intervention (mandatory): 4
Practicals activity assessment (mandatory): 4
Preparation of lectures and practicals: 60
Designing the exercise intervention: 34
Self-study: 39
Exam: 3

Method of Assessment

The final assessment will take place in the form of a written exam
consisting of several open-ended questions. In addition, in relation to
the practicals about designing an exercise intervention, students (in
groups of max. three) produce a report. Both parts must have a minimum
grade of 6.0 to pass the course (i.e. no compensation possible).


Several chapters from the following books:
• Weinberg, R.S. & Gould, D. Foundations of Sport and Exercise
Psychology, 7th edition. Human Kinetics (ISBN: 9781492572350)
• Kenney, W.L., Wilmore & Costill, D.L., Physiology of Sport and
Exercise 7th edition. Human Kinetics. (ISBN: 9781492572299)
• Several scientific articles

Additional Information

The course includes several guest lectures, which will be provided by:
• dr. Annick Ledebt, FGB
• dr. John Stins, FGB
• invited lecturers

The course is part of the minor “Five Big Issues in Health”.

Recommended background knowledge

Some basic knowledge about human anatomy and physiology is recommended.

General Information

Course Code AB_1035
Credits 6 EC
Period P2
Course Level 300
Language of Tuition English
Faculty Faculty of Science
Course Coordinator dr. M.J. Hofmijster
Examiner dr. M.J. Hofmijster
Teaching Staff

Practical Information

You need to register for this course yourself

Last-minute registration is available for this course.

Teaching Methods Study Group, Lecture, Practical