Module code: MHUM007

Module Overview

This module focuses on the application of nutrition to sports and exercise.  The module begins with an introduction to exercise physiology both theoretical and practical before exploring the role of energy and nutrients during exercise. Content is taught using a collection of in-house and external speakers.  By the end of the module students will be confident in how to apply nutrition principles in a sport and exercise setting. 

Module provider

School of Biosciences

Module Leader

COLLINS Adam (Biosciences)

Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 7

Module cap (Maximum number of students): N/A

Overall student workload

Workshop Hours: 6

Independent Learning Hours: 85

Seminar Hours: 10

Tutorial Hours: 10

Laboratory Hours: 3

Practical/Performance Hours: 6

Guided Learning: 10

Captured Content: 20

Module Availability

Semester 2

Prerequisites / Co-requisites

Previous attendance of MHUM001, MHUM002 and MHUM003 

Module content

Indicative content includes: 

Introduction to the module:  

Nutritional concerns of exercise 

Exercise physiology: physiological and biochemical response to exercise & training 

PRACTICAL:  Effect of supplementing with an ergogenic aid on exercise performance  

Energy, Carbohydrate & Fat – Fuels for exercise 

Carbohydrate and protein requirements for exercise 

Fluid & electrolytes balance in exercise: use of sports drinks 

The Performance Nutritionist 

Ergogenic aids 

The female athlete / exercise & bone 

Nutrition for strength & power 

Practical Sports Nutrition 

PRACTICAL: Critical appraisal of commercial sports drinks and supplements – Innovating new foods + products 

Exercise nutrition for the non-athlete 

Case studies in sports nutrition 

Current hot topics in Sports nutrition (variable) 

Student seminars (lay presentations) 

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting

Alternative Assessment

For students failing the module overall due to failed presentation, a repeat 10 minute individual presentation will be requested (in person or via Skype), on the topic chosen either in the original presentation or from their written critical appraisal.

Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate:

The ability to summarise and disseminate information of exercise nutrition for a named sport, and communicate this to a lay audience.

Critical appraisal of current evidence on nutrition for a chosen sport, and how to translate this into sound nutritional recommendations. 

Formative assessment

The sports nutrition product practical is designed to allow students to appraise products and their application, which will then be collectively appraised through group discussion. 


For presentations, formative feedback will be given at the end of each presentation.  Formative feedback given as written summary appraisal within 1 week of the presentations. 

For written case studies, written individual feedback provided within 3 weeks of summative assessment submission.  Group feedback prior to 3 weeks from submission. 

Module aims

  • To provide an understanding of the physiological, biochemical and nutritional demands of exercise and sport
  • To gain insight into the innovative ways nutrition can be used to enhance exercise performance and improve recovery
  • To provide experience of field and laboratory methods used in exercise testing, involving students in the running of an exercise trial to assess the impact of a chosen ergogenic aid (e.g. caffeine)
  • To critically appraise the suitability of commercially available sports nutrition products and develop food equivalents.
  • To gain insight in the interplay between nutrition and physical activity (inc. exercise) for health
  • To gain insight into the role of the sports nutritionist/sports dietician alongside individuals and teams

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
001 A comprehensive understanding of the biochemistry underlying metabolic fuel selection during aerobic and anaerobic exercise KC E, R
002 A comprehensive appreciation and understanding of the role nutrition has in the physiology and biochemistry of different types of exercise and training KC E. R
003 A working understanding of the use of exercise testing in assessing health, fitness, nutritional requirements and/or physiological effects of intervention PT E. D
004 Comprehensive understanding of the nutritional needs of athletes and be able to justify and implement dietary adjustments that may improve sporting performance. CPT E , R, G
005 A critical understanding of the composition and use of sports foods, supplements and ergogenic aids, and their efficacy in influencing performance KCT E, R
006 A systematic understanding of the role of exercise in health and disease and competently translate the evidence base of exercise science and exercise nutrition to the non- athletic public. KCT E, R
007 An ability to summarise and present current evidence on sports nutrition for a given sport and translate into clear nutritional recommendations KCPT E, R, D

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed build on the understanding already gained in metabolic nutrition, coupled to a brief overview of exercise physiology /biochemistry. In addition, we will attempt to expose students to the elements of nutrition relevant to sport and exercise. Employing a variety of in-house and external expertise in theory, research and application of nutrition.

The learning and teaching methods will include lectures, tutorials, practical sessions and student seminar.

Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Reading list
Upon accessing the reading list, please search for the module using the module code: MHUM007

Other information

How this module aligns to the 5 pillars of the curriculum 

This module specifically features aspects of, Employability, Resourcefulness and Resilience, Digital Capabilities and Global and cultural capabilities.  

Employability: In this module students are trained and encouraged to employ their knowledge of nutrition to an exercising situation, applicable to not just athletes but the average exerciser.  Students gain an appreciation of the cross-disciplinary approach between sports and exercise and nutrition in the management of individual health and/or exercise performance, empowering them to apply this knowledge in the field.  The module is designed to provide not just theory but application of knowledge, equipping students for employment as nutritionists or sports/performance nutritionists.  Through the use of authentic assessments, and formative in class activities, students will explore and solve real life case studies, as well as produce an in-depth nutritional summary and recommendations for a case or chosen sport;  Students will also employ and develop skills from previous modules to enable them further think about how to to communicate to a variety of audiences.  In addition, students are exposed to industry speakers and practitioners, gaining an appreciation of the scope and opportunities for working in exercise nutrition.     

Resourcefulness and Resilience:   The teaching of this module provides a scaffold around which students need to apply their knowledge and resourcefulness to solve problems and demonstrate innovation, through critically appraising and developing novel foods and diets, participating in research studies, and gathering and interpreting evidence.  The nature of the assessments and formative activities in class are such that students will be required to draw upon their individual and collective resourcefulness, often working in partnership with other students to work through cases and innovate solutions.   

Digital Capabilities: As in other modules, students are encouraged to work together in groups, utilising collaborative tools (Whatsapp, Teams, Zoom) to communicate.   As has been emphasised in previous modules, these are key skills that are increasingly important to the modern nutritionist, working in a variety of settings and teams.  Students are also encouraged to use some digital tools from previous modules (MHUM002), to establish nutritional requirements and create nutritional recommendations.  Students are supported and encouraged to use a variety of digital tools to communicate messages to specific audiences (e.g. Wives and Girlfriends, Coaches, Athletes, parents).  .   

Global and cultural capabilities: Students will get insight into the culture of sport, and the challenges of working in a competitive arena.  Similarly working with exercising non-athletes, whose goals and challenges may differ, as too will the approaches and priorities for nutrition.   Students will also gain an appreciation of bit h the cultural and international issues that can present barriers or challenges to meeting nutritional recommendations, and strategies to overcome these.  This is reinforced through the use of case studies, and encouraging students to share their own diverse cultures. 

Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Human Nutrition MSc(CORE) 2 Core Each unit of assessment must be passed at 50% to pass the module

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2024/5 academic year.