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The Clinical Exercise Physiologist in NZ has expertise in the assessment and prescription of exercise for individuals across their lifespan to reduce the risk of disease related to physical inactivity and to improve the exercise capacity of people with chronic medical conditions. 

The Clinical Exercise Physiologist in NZ works in a) a multidisciplinary and inter-professional collaborative setting in a public or privately funded organisation, b) in a private practice as a self-employed individual or in partnership, or c) as a clinic tutor in a tertiary education institution.

The Clinical Exercise Physiologist may be an employer. Employees may include reception and administrative staff, other Clinical Exercise Physiologists, or personal trainers and recent graduates who are not eligible for CEPNZ registration.


Clinical Exercise Physiologists in NZ:

  1. Screen and stratify people of all ages and states of health for the purpose of exercise planning and to optimise the safety of physical interventions.

  2. Design and conduct appropriate exercise testing including, but not limited to, cardiopulmonary exercise testing, body composition etc.

  3. Use instrumentation such as electrocardiography, expired gas analysis, and spirometry, to assess cardiac and respiratory function.

  4. Design and prescribe an individualised exercise programme to increase exercise capacity and assist in the treatment and management of chronic medical conditions.

  5. Design, prescribe, and monitor individualised exercise programmes both on a one-to-one basis or in group sessions for disease prevention and rehabilitation.

  6. Demonstrate an understanding of and ability to design exercise programmes and provide lifestyle education for people from different cultural backgrounds, and to people with psychological barriers to exercise.   

  7. Provide an education programme regarding the effect of exercise on: a) an individual’s health condition; b) their comorbidities, or the risk of developing comorbidities; c) the importance of life-long physical activity.

  8. Accept referrals from health care professionals at the primary and secondary levels of health care.

  9. Maintain communication with relevant health professionals, refer to and work with other health care professionals, and deliver their services without direct medical supervision except in the case of high-risk clients/patients. It is the responsibility of the clinical exercise physiologist to determine the level of risk in consultation with the client’s medical practitioner.

  10. Are certified in cardiopulmonary resuscitation and hold a current certificate in Basic Life Support with AED training.

  11. Comply with relevant Acts and statutes such as the Privacy Act (1993) and Health & Safety Act (1992) and its codes of practice; and if a self-employed member of CEPNZ, comply with all statutes governing employment and business practice.

  12. Meet the principles of competency as set out in the Health and Practitioners Competence Assurance Act (2003).

  13. Meet the requirements for continuing professional development.


The scope of practice of the Clinical Exercise Physiologists in NZ does not include the diagnosis of a medical condition. If tests conducted by a Clinical Exercise Physiologist reveal findings that are not consistent with the known and expected health status of the client/patient, the client/patient will be referred to other appropriate health professionals and if this professional is not the client’s/patient's GP, a letter will be sent informing the GP of the referral and the physiologist’s concerns.


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