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Exercise & Sport Studies

Smith College patrons exercise inside Olin Gym

The Department of Exercise & Sport Studies (ESS) is committed to improving the quality of life at Smith College by providing an array of classes that allow for the exploration and better understanding of the importance of exercise and physical activity in our daily lives. The department has three areas of concentration: performance courses, the minor in exercise and sport studies, and a master of science in exercise & sport studies.

Requirements

Advisers: Barbara Brehm-Curtis, Lynn Oberbillig and Erica Tibbetts

The ESS minor provides students with a comprehensive introduction to exercise and sport studies. This course of study is useful for students with an interest in exercise and sport and for those considering graduate study or a career in exercise science; community, worksite or other fitness programs; and the health sciences, such as physical therapy and medicine. Students interested in coaching receive certification.


The requirements for the minor comprise six 4-credit courses, including ESS 100 and either ESS 210 or ESS 215. The other courses (16 credits) may be selected from ESS departmental offerings. In addition, one appropriate course from another department may be substituted with your adviser's permission.

A maximum of four performance course credits may be counted toward the minor.

Course selection for the minor must be approved by a faculty adviser.

Please consult the Smith College Course Catalog for current offerings.

You may wish to follow one of the following specific areas of emphasis. Listed are course requirements for each.

Coaching/Education

  • ESS 100 Introduction to Exercise & Sport Studies
  • ESS 107 Emergency Care
  • ESS 110 Introduction to Coaching
  • ESS 215 Physiology of Exercise
  • ESS 220 Psychology of Sport
  • EDC 336 Seminar in American Education

Exercise Science

  • ESS 100 Introduction to Exercise & Sport Studies
  • ESS 107 Emergency Care
  • ESS 210 Kinesiology
  • ESS 215 Physiology of Exercise
  • ESS 220 Psychology of Sport
  • ESS 250 Nutrition and Health
  • ESS 400 Special Studies

Health

  • ESS 100 Introduction to Exercise & Sport Studies
  • ESS 107 Emergency Care
  • ESS 130 Stress Management
  • ESS 140 Health Behavior
  • ESS 250 Nutrition and Health
  • ESS 340 Women’s Health: Current Topics
  • IDP 208 Women’s Medical Issues

Sociocultural Perspectives

  • ESS 100 Introduction to Exercise & Sport Studies
  • ESS 130 Stress Management
  • ESS 140 Health Behavior
  • ESS 200 Sport: In Search of the American Dream
  • ESS 215 Physiology of Exercise
  • ESS 220 Psychology of Sport
  • ESS 230 Body Images & Sport Media
  • ESS 340 Women’s Health: Current Topics

Courses

Performance courses are offered for credit in a wide variety of activities. Each class is designed to enhance the student’s physical skills, fitness, knowledge of human movement and understanding of the role of physical activity in a healthy lifestyle. Each course encompasses a combination of instruction in techniques, readings, lectures and discussion. In general, each section involves an average of two scheduled hours per week plus an hour of work outside of class each week. Students may count no more than four performance course credits toward the degree. Courses with multiple sections may be repeated for credit, but individual course sections may not be repeated for credit.

Aquatics

  • Beginning Swimming
  • Advanced Beginning/Intermediate Swimming
  • Springboard Diving
  • Swim Conditioning
  • Lifeguard Training (2 credits)

Conditioning & Fitness

  • Aerobics
  • Kickboxing
  • Self-Paced Fitness
  • Physical Conditioning
  • Weight Training
  • Ultimate Frisbee

Mind-Body

  • Pilates Mat Training
  • Self Defense
  • Kung Fu
  • Tai Chi
  • Yoga
  • Ba Gua Zhang

Outdoor Skills

  • Introduction to Wilderness Skills
  • Flatwater Canoeing
  • Rock Climbing
  • Sculling
  • Whitewater Canoeing
  • Whitewater Kayaking
  • Outdoor Adventure Sampler
  • Fly Fishing
  • Archery

Racquet Sports

  • Squash
  • Tennis
  • Badminton
  • British Racketball
  • Pickle Ball

Level I Sports

  • Fencing
  • Golf

Please check the course catalog for up-to-date information. You can also see the Five College course schedule.

ESS 100 Playing the Game: Introduction to Exercise and Sport Studies
A beginning survey course of the disciplines that address physical activity and sport. The course takes into account the general effects of physical activity and how one studies and analyzes these experiences. Course content includes an examination of behavioral, sociocultural, and biophysical experiences and professional possibilities. Open to first years and sophomores. Credits: 4
Lynn Oberbillig, Moorea Rose Spoljaric
Normally offered each fall

ESS 107 Emergency Care
The goal of this course is to teach emergency medical care that enables the student to (a) recognize symptoms of illness and injuries; (b) implement proper procedures; (c) administer appropriate care; (d) achieve and maintain proficiency in all caregiving skills; (e) be responsible and behave in a professional manner; and (f) become certified in Community First Aid/AED and CPR for the Professional Rescuer. Credits: 2
Craig Collins
Normally offered both fall and spring semesters

ESS 110 Introduction to Sports Coaching
This course introduces students to the principles of coaching that are applicable to all sports. Content includes the following areas of sport science: pedagogy, leadership, psychology, biomechanics, physiology, growth and development and areas of health and wellness related to the well-being of athletes. Enrollment limited to 20. {S} Credits: 4
Mark Simon Platts
Normally offered each spring

ESS 130 Stress Management
The physical and psychological components of stress, identification of personal stress response patterns and techniques for daily stress management. Enrollment limited to 20. Credits: 2
Barbara Brehm-Curtis, Jaime L. Ginsberg, Erin Catherine Miller, Devon Brandon Quattrocchi, Erica S Tibbetts
Normally offered both fall and spring semesters

ESS 140 Health Behavior
The influence of behavior on health and well-being. Students examine the way in which factors such as nutrition and dietary habits, stress perception and response, and physical activity interact with the physiological processes of health, disease and aging. Enrollment limited to 40. Credits: 4
Karen Lynn Riska
Normally offered each academic year

ESS 175 Applied Exercise Science
An experiential course designed to introduce students to applied exercise physiology and kinesiology. Such subjects as energy expenditure, energy systems, aerobic power, effort perception, applied anatomy and training principles are studied using a system of lecture and laboratory sessions. Enrollment limited to 20. Credits: 2
Emily Morgan Lopez
Normally offered each interterm

ESS 200 Sport: In Search of the American Dream
A study of whether sport has served to promote or inhibit ethnic/minority participation in the American Dream. Biological and cultural factors are examined to ascertain the reasons for success of some groups and failure of others as high-level participants. The lives of major American sports figures are studied in depth to determine the costs assessed and rewards bestowed on those who battled racial, ethnic or sexual oppression in the athletic arena. {H} {S} Credits: 4
Erica S Tibbetts
Normally offered in alternate years

ESS 210 Kinesiology
A course in applied anatomy and biomechanics. Students learn basic structural anatomy as well as the application of mechanics to human movement. Special emphasis is given to the qualitative analysis of human movement. This is an important course for any student who intends to study physical therapy or personal training. {N} Credits: 4
Sean Michael Cabaniss, Karen Lynn Riska
Normally offered each spring

ESS 215 Physiology of Exercise
Exercise, sport and outdoor activities all require energy. The study of these energetic events is the basis of this course. We study how the body adapts to repeated bouts of physical activity and how the body can perform a single event. This course is highly applied. Short lectures accompanied by relevant laboratory experiences. Prerequisite: BIO 150 or permission of the instructor. This course also counts toward the major in biological sciences. Enrollment limited to 20. {N} Credits: 4
Sarah Witkowski
Normally offered in alternate years

ESS 220 Psychology of Sport
This is an introductory course designed to provide information and facilitate understanding in regard to individual sport behavior. The emphasis is on the psychological constructs and concepts that relate to and help explain the phenomena of sport performance. Topics include motivation, team cohesion, leadership, peak performance, anxiety, attention, confidence and psychological skills training. Cultural differences and disability are also addressed. PSY 100 is recommended but is not a prerequisite. {S} Credits: 4
Devon Brandon Quattrocchi, Erica S Tibbetts
Normally offered each spring

ESS 230 Body Images and Sport Media
An exploration of sporting images as projected through the media. Primary emphasis is on print and electronic journalism, including written narratives, photography, television, film and digital images. The course examines the (re)presentation and (re)production of the athletic or healthy body as the standard for fitness. The topic includes issues on embodiment, cultural symbolism, political and moral ideologies and commercialization. {S} Credits: 4
Members of the department
Normally offered in alternate years

ESS 250 Nutrition and Health
An introduction to the science of human nutrition. Topics include absorption and transportation of nutrients in the body, and the way nutrients are used to support growth and development and maintain health. We also examine how personal dietary choices affect nutritive quality of the diet and the health of an individual. The relationship between diet and health is explored throughout the course. Special topics include diet and physical fitness, weight control, vegetarianism and women’s nutrition concerns. High school chemistry recommended but not required. Credits: 4
Barbara Brehm-Curtis
Normally offered each spring

ESS 280 Applied Sports Medicine
Healthy participation in sport activities can occur throughout life. Injuries due to involvement in sport can result in untold expense, discomfort and possible lifelong problems. The etiology and prevention of injury are discussed. The anatomic and clinical features of specific injuries are analyzed. Exercise as medicine is also discussed. Lecture and discussion are supported by applied laboratory exercises. Enrollment limited to 20. {S} Credits: 4
James Harmon Johnson, Victoria Marie VanAlstine-Tauer
Normally offered in alternate years

ESS 300 Topics in Exercise Sport Studies
Topics Course.

Physical Activity & Health
A seminar focusing on the relationship between physical activity and health. Physical activity can be used as a strategy to prevent and treat chronic disease. In this seminar, we will explore the evidence underlying the relationship between physical activity and health in a variety of populations. Major topics include physical activity and sedentary behavior epidemiology, measurement and study design, chronic disease etiology, and health disparities. Emphasis is placed on critical evaluation of seminal and current research in the field. Enrollment limit of 14. Credits: 4
Members of the department
Expected to be offered in the next three years

ESS 340 Women’s Health: Current Topics
A seminar focusing on current research papers in women’s health. Recent topics have included reproductive health issues, eating disorders, heart disease, depression, autoimmune disorders and breast cancer. Prerequisites: 140 or a strong biological sciences background, and permission of the instructor. Open to juniors and seniors. This course may not be taken for the S/U grading option. Enrollment limited to 14. {N} Credits: 4
Barbara Brehm-Curtis
Normally offered each fall

ESS 400 Special Studies
Credits: 1-4
Members of the department
Normally offered each academic year

IDP 208 Women’s Medical Issues
A study of topics and issues relating to women’s health, including menstrual cycle, contraception, sexually transmitted infections, abortion, mental health, nutrition, osteoporosis, the media’s representation of women and gender bias in health care. Social, cultural, ethical and political issues are considered, as well as an international perspective. {N} Credits: 4
Leslie Richard Jaffe
Normally offered each spring

 

 


Emeriti

Jackie Blei, Lecturer Emerita in Exercise & Sport Studies

Chris Shelton, Professor Emerita of Exercise & Sport Studies

Don Siegel, Professor Emeritus of Exercise & Sport Studies


Instructors

Richard Cesario, Tai Chi
Email

Carla Coffey, Physical Conditioning
Email | Bio

Craig Collins, Aquatics
Email

Christine Davis, Tennis
Email | Bio

Stefanie Frazee, Outdoor Adventure
Email | Bio

Jaime Ginsberg, Stress Management
Email | Bio

Frank Grindrod, Primitive and Wilderness Skills, Flat Water Canoe
Email

Lynn Hersey, Recruiting
Email | Bio

Jean Hoffman, Pilates
Email

Scott Johnson, Outdoor Skills
Email | Bio

Emily Lopez, Applied Exercise Science
Email | Bio

Judy Messer, Kickboxing
Email

Katie Moore, Yoga
Email | Bio

Lynne Paterson, Yoga
Email

Rosalie Peri, Pilates
Email

Mark Platts, Sport Leadership
Email | Bio

Danielle Rao, Rock Climbing
Email

Nancy Rothenberg, Self Defense and Kung Fu
Email

Deedie Steele, Tennis
Email

Kelli Steele, Sport Medicine
Email | Bio

Elizabeth (Lisa) Thompson, Yoga
Email

Ian (Jake) Turner, Fundamenals of Conditioning
Email | Bio

 

Employee Fitness Program

The ESS Fitness Program is open to all Smith College employees and their immediate families on a first-come, first-served basis. Class size is limited. Classes are generally all levels, unless otherwise noted.

Register for Classes

Employees are notified about current fitness programs via email and eDigest. Registration forms can be returned to Rachel Cook, Ainsworth 105.

Spring 2018 fitness classes will run from Tuesday, January 16 through Friday, May 4, 2018.

Fitness classes are held during spring break and Rally Day, but not when the campus or facilties are closed.

Medical Clearance

All participants must fill out a medical clearance form annually.

Harvard Pilgrim Fitness Reimbursement

Participatation in any two sessions (fall, summer, spring) in a calendar year may qualify for to earn $150 through Harvard Pilgrim's Fitness Reimbursement Program. Submit a copy of your registration forms and cancelled checks along with a copy of the reimbursement application (found on the Harvard Pilgrim website). More instructions may be found on the Harvard Pilgrim website.

Smith Pioneers

Smith women have always been active athletes. Physical training was part of the Smith curriculum even during the college’s early years, when less progressive institutions still believed that strenuous physical activity harmed women’s health. It’s not surprising that the first collegiate women’s basketball game took place here in 1893, or that Smith was the first women’s college to join the NCAA.

At the intercollegiate level, Smith offers the serious athlete 11 varsity teams and some of the nation’s finest athletic facilities available to undergraduate women. Smith is a member of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division III, the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) and New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC).

Intercollegiate Sports

More Information

For more information about athletics at Smith, visit the Smith Pioneers website.

Human Performance Lab

Located on the fourth floor of the Scott Building, the Human Performance Lab (HPL) is a space for teaching and research, and home to graduate offices, faculty research and labs.

Teaching Lab

The teaching lab houses many resources to give students hands-on experiences in exercise science, including metabolic testing, functional performance and health monitoring. The equipment includes a VacuMed metabolic cart, treadmill, Monark cycle ergometers, body composition assessment tools, blood pressure and heartrate monitoring tools, a Polar Team2 system, iWorx Data Acquisition and Analysis systems, anatomical models and an exam bed.

Sample Processing Lab

Adjacent to the HPL is a sample processing lab, which is approved to accommodate and process human samples (i.e. blood, saliva, urine). The space includes instrumentation for lactate and glucose analysis and is supplied with a sink and emergency eyewash station.

Vascular Function Research Lab

The vascular function laboratory is a quiet, temperature-controlled space with exam bed, sink and eyewash station. In this space, noninvasive tests are performed for endothelial function via ultrasound and Doppler, and arterial stiffness via pulse wave velocity. The space has a Terason uSmart 3300 ultrasound imaging system with 15L4A Linear Array Transducer. It also houses a Hokanson E20 Rapid Cuff Inflator, a 27-inch iMac computer with FMD Studio software, patient monitor for blood pressure, and EKG necessary for vascular function testing. The laboratory has the SphygmoCor XCEL Pulse wave analysis (PWA) and Pulse wave velocity (PWV) system to measure and analyze arterial stiffness outcomes with the SphygmoCor XCEL Software suite.

Research Testing Lab

The research testing lab is a space to perform physical testing on research participants. The space has the capacity for submaximal and maximal cardiopulmonary exercise testing on a treadmill or cycle ergometer, muscle strength and endurance assessments via the Biodex Isokinetic Dynamometer and Lafayette Jackson Strength Evaluation System. We can analyze muscle function and its relationship to electroencephalography (EEG) via Emotiv Epoc Systems.

If you are a student who would like to get involved in research in ESS, please contact Rachel Cook.

Smith Outdoor Adventure Program

The Outdoor Adventure program at Smith organizes fun outdoor trips throughout the school year. While some of our trips can be more challenging, most of them require no experience and are usually free.

More Information

For more information about the Outdoor Adventure program, please contact Scott Johnson.

 

 

Contact

Department of Exercise & Sport Studies

Scott/Ainsworth Gym
Smith College
Northampton, MA 01063

Phone: 413-585-3970
Fax: 413-585-2394

Administrative Assistant: Rachel Cook