Strength and Conditioning with Rehabilitation* BSc (Hons)

Full-time undergraduate (3 years)

Cambridge

September 2019


This course will start in September 2019, subject to validation.

Overview

Train as a strength and conditioning coach in our professionally accredited labs in Cambridge, with the option to specialise in physiology or biomechanics. Prepare for a career working with professional sports teams or athletes.

Full description

Careers

You'll graduate with the knowledge to work as a strength and conditioning coach.

Coaches can work for teams or organisations, or be self-employed. You could pursue a career in a sports medicine team, supporting professional players back from injury. Or you might choose to work with the increasing number of 'weekend warriors' and recreational athletes, who also need support to recover from injury. Alternatively, you could focus on working with the wider community – perhaps those who are inactive or older, and need assistance to get back to functional fitness.

While you're studying at ARU, we'll encourage you to make connections with industry. We have links with a range of sporting organisations, such as:

  • Living Sport (Cambridge and Peterborough Sports Development)
  • Cambridge City Council
  • Addenbrooke's Hospital
  • British Paralympic Association
  • Cambridge Utd FC
  • British Cycling
  • England & Wales Cricket Board.

Postgraduate study and research

Graduation doesn’t need to be the end of your time with us. If you’d like to continue your studies we offer a wide range of full-time and part-time postgraduate courses, including MSc Sport and Exercise Science as well as PhD opportunities.

Modules & assessment

Year one, core modules

  • Anatomy and Physiology
    You will explore the fundamental aspects of human anatomy and physiology in order to understand how the body responds and performs to physical activity. You will look at how the regulation of the human body to stress (exercise) relates to an intricate set of homeostatic events, enabling different systems to increase their overall physiological output to sustain effort. The structure and function of the main organ systems in the body; the musculoskeletal, respiratory, cardiovascular and digestive systems will be examined and reviewed in relation to rest and in response to exercise. You will study and explore the content through lectures, seminars and laboratory based practicals where the functional and homeostatic principles will be applied and examined under changing conditions. As well as providing you with subject specific knowledge, this module will enable you to develop a number of specific employability skills related to practical (laboratory) techniques and general skills related to data collection, data handling and data presentation.
  • Introduction to Human Movement
    You will be introduced to the fundamentals of human movement using a concept of qualitative movement diagnosis (QMD). QMD is an observational approach to analysing human movement, a key skill which is fundamental to all Sports Coaching, Sport Science, Health and Exercise and Physical Education practitioners. You will also study the types of motion a body can have, including the concepts of distance, speed and time and displacement, velocity and acceleration. These kinematic motion quantities will be explored practically and graphically. The importance of Newton's laws and the net external force to all movement will be explained, giving you an insight into how limb rotation can produce translational movement. The anatomical quantities of mass, weight and centre of mass will be investigated and the links drawn with the body's kinetic and potential energy. You will study and explore the content within the context of real sporting actions such as: standing, walking, running, jumping and throwing and by using the techniques of video analysis, experimental investigation and computer aided data analysis.
  • Organisation and Structure of Sport
    Sport practitioners, at every level, operate within and around sport organisations, systems, and structures. This broader socio-political organisational environment enables and constrains how sports practitioners operate. Consequently it is important to appreciate this broader environment in order to understand your role within it and how to navigate it in the most efficient and effective manner. You’ll develop an understanding of how sport is organised and structured in the UK (and abroad), the dynamic and complex nature of the sport industry, and the role and influence of organisations and various governmental agencies (e.g. Sport England and UK Sport) in overseeing and delivering sport and physical activity.
  • Exercise Physiology and Nutrition
    Energy is essential for the functioning of the body and is in strong demand during exercise. You will explore the biochemical processes involved in energy transfer (metabolism) and will examine the different energy production pathways under aerobic and anaerobic conditions – and extend this understanding to identify the continuum of energy supply and demand during differing modes of exercise. Additionally, the role and contribution of the various macro-nutrients as fuel for the metabolism will be discussed. Energy expenditure during rest and physical activity will also be investigated. As a result you will examine how oxygen consumption can give us a reliable insight into our energy expenditure and the different fuel and energy systems used. In this module you will learn through lectures, seminars and laboratory based practicals where the physiological and metabolic principles will be applied and examined under both resting and exercise conditions. As well as providing you with subject specific knowledge, this module will enable you to develop a number of specific employability skills related to practical (laboratory) techniques and general skills related to data collection, data handling and data presentation.
  • Sport and Exercise Psychology
    Understanding psychological aspects of sport and exercise is vital in enhancing, or inhibiting, sports performance and exercise participation. This could include pre-competition nerves, attention control, self-confidence and motivation. You will reflect upon your own experiences in relation to psychological factors and to consider psychological demands of different sports and levels of participation. You will use your classroom time to take part in discussion and analysis of specific key topic areas of sport and exercise psychology and take part in group and individual tasks.
  • Pedagogical Principles in Sport
    In this module we will cover key theoretical and practical concepts that underpin contemporary coaching. By the end of the module you will have developed an appreciation of the coaching process including the ethical, pedagogical, managerial and behavioural components that enable good practice. We will investigate the roles, techniques, and planning skills of a good coach, the impact of their adherence to the professional code of conduct, their awareness of health and safety issues and their understanding of how a coaching session should progress. A crucial aspect of coaching is the ability to understand how individuals learn and acquire the knowledge and skills to perform. You will learn to identify different approaches to learning and what these mean for coaching practice and athlete development.

Year two, core modules

  • Physiological Profiling for Endurance
    Aerobic physiology and functioning are the linchpins to all athletic and health-based activities. You will study the process of profiling aerobic endurance performance and health from a physiological and analytical perspective, looking at validity and reliability in test selection. You will consider the protocols and limitations associated with the assessment of maximum aerobic power (VO2max), while aerobic capacity will be addressed in the context of maximal lactate steady state, lactate minimum, individual anaerobic threshold, onset of blood lactate accumulation (OBLA) and DMax and the ventilatory threshold. The relevance of performance economy as a diagnostic tool will be considered and projected to show how this simple concept of sub-maximal oxygen uptake can be used to establish the performance indicator termed velocity at VO2max (vVO2max). Consideration will be given to the dynamics of oxygen supply and utilisation at the onset of exercise through a reflection of oxygen uptake kinetics. These concepts will all be used to explore exercise intensity domains and how the role of critical power and the W’ can be used to provide an objective measure of an integrated response to exercise. Clinical skills will also be considered through the application of such techniques as ECG, thoracic impedance, respiratory flow loops and cardiopulmonary exercise testing.
  • Physiological Profiling for Strength and Power
    The production of force and power across a range of motion, and in conjunction with the body dimensions, are crucial to both everyday living and athletic performance. You will study the process of profiling aerobic endurance performance and health from a physiological and analytical perspective, looking at validity and reliability in test selection. You will assess anaerobic power through such means as the Wingate cycle test and Margaria Stair test while anaerobic capacity will be evaluated in the context of accumulated oxygen deficit tests as well as lactate and constant load tests. The determination of strength will address measures of isometric, isotonic and isoinertial force production using conventional ‘gym-based’ approaches to more clinically relevant measures such as the Reactive Strength Index. These will be compared to the laboratory controlled assessment of strength (torque) using isokinetic dynamometry. Body composition will be considered through the use of both callipers and skinfold assessments through to hydro-densitometry. Flexibility and the determination of range of motion (ROM) will then be considered in the context of indirect measures such as Sit-and-Reach through to more applied approaches using flexometers and goniometers.
  • Practical Competencies in Biomechanics
    Leading on from the Introduction to Human Movement and Anatomy and Physiology modules, you will advance your understanding of Biomechanics through developing an understanding of how to measure, record and analyse a sporting performer using a variety of approaches commonly used by biomechanists. You will develop a theoretical and practical understanding of the key competencies within the discipline of Biomechanics, following the British Association of Sport and Exercise Science (BASES) ‘guidelines’ for biomechanics. Specifically, you will study and explore the context of real sporting actions such as: standing, walking, running, jumping and throwing and by using the techniques of video/motion analysis, experimental investigation and computer aided data analysis.
  • Biomechanics: Analysis of Motion
    We will further develop your understanding of force plates (gained in the Practical Competencies in Biomechanics module) used for data capture and analysis, and extend your understanding of motion analysis. You will focus on the initiation and development of motion in terms of both the internal forces produced by the musculoskeletal system and the external forces acting on the body. In order to understand human movement, you will explore the ground reaction force in depth. You will then see how the concepts of internal forces, the external net force and mass and acceleration are used to explain movement patterns. For this, you will appreciate the importance of torque, momentum and impulse and how to use these quantities to critically analyse a sporting action. The fundamental principles of gait analysis will also be explored in a theoretical and practical manner, providing you with sufficient experience to recognise differences in gait (and force) patterns between normal and pathological gaits. Throughout the module you will use force plates and motion analysis to investigate, analyse and appraise human movement.
  • Applied Research and Employability
    This is your opportunity to build and test ideas for your final year research project or advanced work placement. Following on from applied experiences gained in previous modules, you will further develop the key competencies that support independent learning and exploration. You will create a research project proposal or a proposal for suitable work experience. In addition, you will evaluate the ethical and legal issues related to being an applied research or practitioner with Sport and Exercise Sciences.
  • Applied Research Skills
    Expanding on the knowledge and experience gained from the 'Research Methods for Sport and Exercise' module, you will continue to develop the knowledge-base and applied skills required to produce a substantive independent report supported by research and data interpretation. You will focus on two interrelated areas of study; applied data collection and interpretation with respect to the research process. These two areas will be delivered with recognition of the two paradigms of research, Quantitative and Qualitative, offering different, but complementary, opportunities to collect and evaluate coaching, health, and sports science data for a perspective or objective review of scientific evidence and applied practice. You will develop key employability skills related to research design and presentation in a safe environment, providing an opportunity to evaluate which research designs would best suit your intended final year project (Research project or Advanced Work Placement).
  • Strength and Conditioning
    This role of the applied strength and conditioning (S&C) coach at all levels of sport has progressed in recent years and is now a fundamental role within the sport science support team. You will explore safe and effective S&C practice and develop an evidence based applied rationale for the role of S&C work in relation to different performance athletes. You will be introduced to the fundamental techniques and principles of athlete assessment, evaluation and consultation, considering these applied modes in conjunction with a recognition of the use of an athlete needs analysis. Although the generic term “S&C” is applied to this training domain you will address the wider implications in relation to the components of fitness: endurance, speed, strength, agility (or equivalent areas). You will also explore the rationale for approaches used in relation to training programme design which will be under-scored by the issues of physiological and anatomical adaptation.

Year three, core modules

  • Undergraduate Research Project
    You are required to undertake a final year research project, as a key component of your degree, focused on a topic relevant to your degree field. Your project may be based on current Anglia Ruskin University research interests, something of interest to you or, if suitable work-place supervision is available, related to the research of your previous, or current, employer. Your project must show evidence of appropriate academic challenge, technical expertise, and progress. You will be required to identify and formulate problems and issues, conduct a literature review, evaluate information, investigate and adopt suitable research methods, and use appropriate methods for data collection, analysis and processing. You will demonstrate that you have fulfilled these criteria via regular meetings with your project supervisor where you will show evidence of project development via discussion and the presentation of spoken, written and other appropriate evidence. A substantial dissertation will form the bulk of the assessment for this module, supported by a presentation and/or other supporting evidence and including an assessed PDP component. In the course of your studies with us you may generate intellectual property, which is defined as an idea, invention, or creation which can be protected by law from being copied by someone else. By registering with us on your course you automatically assign any such intellectual property to us unless we agree with the organisation covering the cost of your course that this is retained by them. In consideration of you making this assignment you will be entitled to benefit from a share in any income generated in accordance with our Revenue Sharing Policy in operation at that time. Details of our Intellectual Property Policy and Guidelines can be found on My.Anglia under Research, Development and Commercial Services or by contacting this Office for a hard copy.
  • Advanced Strength and Conditioning
    Investigate the latest evidence based practice on Strength and Conditioning (S&C). Learn, experience and analyse free weight lifting techniques with specific focus on more complex lifts and the derivatives associated with them. You will learn to coach performers through this process and also consider the value (of these lifts) within the training cycle. Through observation of performers, you will understand the coaching cues in order to identify ineffective movement patterns. You will also develop a high level of knowledge to enable you to practically suggest and present appropriate interventions for a performer of varying ability. The use of technology/micro technology for monitoring performance will be investigated and you will review the value of this method of data collection for the exercise and conditioning professional. You will investigate how training may change when working with different performers with varying abilities. Being able to change your professional practice relative to the specific population you are working with is a critical skill for the conditioning coach. Learning about the needs and issues to consider when training special populations will permit you to be a more proficient in the area.
  • Long-term Athlete Development
    You’ll examine the holistic development of children and adolescents with a particular emphasis on the importance of adopting a long-term, athlete-centred approach to developing athletes. We’ll specifically focus on the formative years of athlete/participant development and grassroots/recreational sport. The importance of physical literacy and role of fundamental movement skills are highlighted as essential components for enabling individuals to maximise their athletic potential and to encourage lifelong participation in sport and physical activity. You’ll also explore the intersection between sport and physical education pedagogical practice and the role that PE/school sport and alternative activities play in adolescent development and their contribution towards achieving wider sport, health and physical activity objectives.
  • Developing Performance Athletes
    Performance sport is an area many students would like to work in but is highly competitive and high pressured. We’ll therefore consider working in this type of environment and the pressures that coaches and performance directors face when making systems/structures that balance the needs of the funding agencies against the needs of the athletes. Following on from ‘Long-Term Athlete Development’, you’ll consider developing and managing the daily training environment, assessing athletes, Talent Identification/Detection and designing training programmes from an athlete centred, coach led perspective. When considering the above factors you’ll be expected to draw upon knowledge developed in previous and co-existing modules to appreciate the multi-faceted nature of performance sport.
  • Applied Biomechanics
    Building on prior biomechanics modules you will now concentrate on the application of biomechanics to improve technique and reduce predisposition to injury for sport or clinical populations. You will learn how to successfully prescribe and/or deliver sport and exercise biomechanics interventions as a coach or sport scientist. During lectures and laboratory sessions you will develop the skills to undertake your own biomechanics intervention, testing on an external member and leading to a report which will document the intervention. You will be assessed via this report which will demonstrate the use of technology for quantifying technique and performance in the field, ability to identify and monitor key characteristic of technique associated with successful performance or injury. You will also critically evaluate the influence of an applied biomechanist in a coaching or clinical setting and learn about the needs and issues of different users.
  • Physiological Basis of Training
    Delve into the fascinating yet sometimes controversial domain of training science and explore the nature training programme design, athlete development and limitations to the success of the athlete. Explore what constitutes performance, examining the physiological and metabolic demands of sports, whilst addressing the principles of training application and design. Consideration will be given to the laws of training in the context of the developing athlete and how these are linked to the of one-factor and two-factor theories of super-compensation. Time will be devoted to the nature of fatigue both as a prerequisite to the training adaptation but also as a function of the training load examining the peripheral and central manifestations of this key training mechanism. Fatigue will also be explored in the context of recovery and methods of recovery. In the context of fatigue and training adaptation the role of cellular messengers such as PGC-1α and mTOR will be considered to show how an adaptation manifests. The notion of fatigue, training and recovery will lead into the evaluation of under-performance syndrome addressing both what this is as psychobiological construct but also how this can be both monitored and avoided. These elements will all be brought together to evaluate the programming of training using an array of approaches including linear and non-linear periodisation and block training models and how these programmes can either through the use of a taper lead to an athletic peak or through the application of undulating loads lead to a maintenance of performance.
  • Physiological Responses to Training
    Critically evaluate the methods used in training and to reflect on the array of physiological, metabolic and biochemical adaptations that arise through reviewing aerobic and anaerobic endurance, strength, power, flexibility and speed. Within each of these domains the application of training approaches will be explored in the context of intensity, frequency and duration thus reflecting training loads. You will analyse how these approaches are associated with the developmental status of the athlete, phase of the training cycle and anticipated training outcome. Training adaptations will be critically evaluated reflecting on the in approaches used to both derive the data and conclusions that were drawn. Key adaptation responses to consider will include: myocardial, haematological, immunological, enzymatic, cellular, substrate, metabolite, neurological and muscular. Additionally training environments will be considered reflecting on the application and manifestation of key approaches such as: altitude, heat, pollution, menstruation, age and disability.
  • Theoretical Aspects of Biomechanics
    We conclude the study of Biomechanics with a look at applied linear and angular kinematics and kinetics concepts, centre of mass calculation and the calculation of joint moments. It introduces another tool of the biomechanist: Automated motion analysis (CODAmotion). You will explore motion, (displacement, velocity, acceleration), force and momentum (the ground reaction force, the net force on the human, free-body diagrams and force vector diagrams), lever systems and the musculo-skeletal system, muscle contraction types and the production of force, the centre of mass, projectile science and work, energy and power. You will be expected to apply all the scientific and computing skills gained during the previous two years including; motion-analysis, force plate data analysis, scientific report writing, graphical and statistical analysis, vector analysis and mathematical problem solving. You will also develop an understanding of rotational motion concepts and use important terminology associated with topics such as the body and segmental planes and axes (the transverse, sagittal and frontal planes and the longitudinal, medio-lateral and antero-posterior axes). To explain how actions are created, the terminology for the six muscle roles will be needed (mover, antagonist, stabilizer etc) along with the muscle functional names (extensor and flexors etc), the types of muscle contraction (concentric, eccentric and isometric contractions) and the three ways a muscle can operate a lever system (isokinetic, isotonic and isometric).

Assessment

Throughout the course, we’ll use a range of assessment methods to help you measure your progress. These include presentations, practical skills tests, scientific reports, case study critiques, online assessments and a research project.

We’ll also encourage you to reflect on your work, and participate in peer assessment.

Where you'll study

Your faculty

The Faculty of Science & Technology is one of the largest of five faculties at Anglia Ruskin University. Whether you choose to study with us full- or part-time, on campus or at a distance, there’s an option whatever your level – from a foundation degree, to a BSc, MSc, PhD or professional doctorate. 

Whichever course you pick, you’ll gain the theory and practical skills needed to progress with confidence. Join us and you could find yourself learning in the very latest laboratories or on field trips or work placements with well-known and respected companies. You may even have the opportunity to study abroad.

Everything we do in the faculty has a singular purpose: to provide a world-class environment to create, share and advance knowledge in science and technology fields. This is key to all of our futures.

Where can I study?

Cambridge
Lord Ashcroft Building on our Cambridge campus

Our campus is close to the centre of Cambridge, often described as the perfect student city.

Explore our Cambridge campus

Fees & funding

How do I pay my fees?

Tuition fee loan

Most English undergraduates take out a tuition fee loan with Student Finance England. The fees are then paid directly to us. The amount you repay each month is linked to your salary and repayments start in April after you graduate.

How to apply for a tuition fee loan

Paying upfront

If you choose not to take out a loan you can pay your fees directly to us. There are two ways to do this: either pay in full, or through a three- or six-month instalment plan starting at registration.

How to pay your fees directly

International students

You must pay your fees up-front, in full or in instalments. You will also be asked for a deposit or sponsorship letter for undergraduate courses. Details will be in your offer letter.

Paying your fees

Funding for UK & EU students

Most new undergraduate students can apply for government funding to support their studies and university life. This includes Tuition Fee Loans and Maintenance Loans. There are additional grants available for specific groups of students, such as those with disabilities or dependants.

We also offer a fantastic range of ARU scholarships, which provide extra financial support while you’re at university. Find out more about eligibility and how to apply.

From September 2018, EU students starting an undergraduate degree with us can access an £800 bursary.

Funding for international students

We offer a number of scholarships, as well as an early payment discount. Explore your options:

Entry requirements

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  • 104 UCAS points from a minimum of 2 A Levels (or equivalent), including a pass in Psychology, Physical Education, Sports Studies or a science subject.
  • 3 GCSEs at grade C, or grade 4, or above including English, Maths and science.
  • If English is not your first language you will be expected to demonstrate a certificated level of proficiency of at least IELTS 6.0 (Academic level) or equivalent English language qualification, as recognised by Anglia Ruskin University.

International students

We welcome applications from international and EU students, and accept a range of international qualifications.

English language requirements

If English is not your first language, you'll need to make sure you meet our English language requirements for undergraduate courses.

Improving your English language skills

If you don't meet our English language requirements, we offer a range of courses which could help you achieve the level required for entry onto a degree course.

We also provide our own English Language Proficiency Test (ELPT) in the UK and overseas. To find out if we are planning to hold an ELPT in your country, contact our country managers.

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