Exercise physiologist: How we can help you with chronic disease

Exercise is considered a relatively new treatment option for chronic disease prevention and management. Many doctors and patients are unaware of how exercise can help, and what kind of exercise is right for them or their patients. This is where exercise physiologists (AEP’S) come in. We are the experts in exercise prescription. Often AEP’s are confused with physiotherapists and although they are similar, they are not the same thing. Physios address and diagnose acute musculoskeletal injuries and restore initial function; where as AEP’s use evidence based exercise intervention for chronic disease prevention and management. Although different, physios and AEP’s often work together to ensure the best results for patients.

Exercise as a treatment option has only gained traction in the 21th century, however it was widely regarded as one of the best disease prevention options over two thousand years ago. Hippocrates wrote “In a word, all parts of the body which are made for active use, if moderately used and exercise at the labour to which they are habituated become healthy, increase bulk, and bear their age well, but when left without exercise they become diseased, their growth is arrested and they soon become old”.

As AEP’s we use exercise as medicine. Each individual is prescribed a dose of exercise for their particular pathology. The prescription is given similar to any other medication. For example, exercise A, for B times a day, for C amount of time; whether that is for days/weeks/months or years. The dose and type of exercises are chosen for each individual person based on their needs and ability. They are then progressed based on their individual goals and functional need to perform physical tasks. This is designed for long term management, lifestyle and behavioural changes to effectively manage chronic conditions.

Exercise can be used to manage and prevents a number of chronic diseases which include cardiovascular disease, metabolic diseases such as diabetes, neuromuscular diseases such as Parkinson’s; as well as musculoskeletal conditions such as arthritis, osteoporosis and other acute and chronic musculoskeletal disorders.

At Absolute Balance we empower our clients, provide education and encourage positive behaviour changes through the use of evidence based therapies to help out clients achieve their health goals. For more information contact us today info@absolutebalance.com.au.


Claire Hills ( B.EXSpSc,Grad.Dip.(Clin.Ex.Phys))
Accredited Exercise Physiologist (AEP) (ESSAM)


What is an Accredited Exercise Physiologist? (n.d.). Retrieved March 18, 2019

Moore, G. E. (2004). The role of exercise prescription in chronic disease. British Journal of Sports Medicine, 38(1), 6-7. doi:10.1136/bjsm.2003.010314

Durstine, J. L., Moore, G. E., & Painter, P. L. (2016). ACSMs exercise management for persons with chronic diseases and disabilities. Champaign, IL: Human Kinetics.