Accredited Exercise Physiologists (AEP’s): Specialists not Generalists!

In my extensive experience treating clients for years I have seen and heard an alarming statement from those misinformed about our profession. What’s alarming is that I have heard these statemens from those also in the industry, namely other allied health professionals or medical professionals. The words they use are various versions of this statement: ” you are prescribing exercise, its general so prescribe something general i.e. if its a back injury prescribe core stability exercises”. Well NO there is nothing general about exercise and that is not correct about our profession or the notion of what exercise is and does!

Make no mistake exercise is medicine and like any medicine there needs to be the appropriate prescription. This means an individuals specific needs, functional capacity, comorbidities and a myriad of other personal markers need to be factored into the prescription. This is so that you can provide the appropriate dose, periodise the programme and test and measure accordingly so that there are improved outcomes.

There is nothing “general” about what we do and if you are seeing any health professional who prescribes you “general exercise” then you are wasting time AND money.

A targeted, tailored approach by an AEP will see greater return than anything ‘general’ that is prescribed.

When we treat workers compensation injuries our AEP’s at Absolute Balance do not treat each injury or client the same. Obviously we take into account the individual however we also note what profession they are in, the critical physical demands of their specific job roles and match our exercise rehabilitation to these demands to reduce the rehab life cycle and get a worker back to work as safely and effectively as possible.

Similarly our clinicians at our clinic treating chronic conditions ranging from diabetes to osteoarthritis prescribe exercise that is achievable and specific to the individual leading to improved health outcomes.

Our vision is to make exercise the ANSWER for ALL health conditions. So if you hear the term “general exercise” know that there is no such thing and those professing such claims are misinformed!



Ryan O’Connor (AEP, ESSAM)