Welcome to the UH Hilo Department of Kinesiology and Exercise Sciences

Kinesiology and Exercise Sciences (KES) is one of the largest, fastest growing programs at the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo, and encompasses a wide range of disciplines including fields of movement sciences, anatomy, physiology, exercise physiology and the exercise sciences, sport psychology, motor learning, athletic training, physical therapy, health promotion, physical education, and coaching.

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Our Mission

Kinesiology and Exercise Sciences (KES) is one of the largest, fastest growing programs at the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo, and encompasses a wide range of disciplines including fields of movement sciences, anatomy, physiology, exercise physiology and the exercise sciences, sport psychology, motor learning, athletic training, physical therapy, health promotion, physical education, and coaching.

The KES major is comprised of a three-track system. The kinesiology and exercise track is designed for students who have interests is coaching, teaching, personal training, strength and conditioning, exercise physiology, and more. The sports medicine, physical therapy and therapeutic sciences track is designed for students who have interests in the fields of medicine, sports medicine, physical therapy, occupational therapy, athletic training, exercise sciences research, and more. And the health promotion track is designed for students who have interests in community health, rural health, health care administration, epidemiology, health and wellness management, indigenous health, and much more.

Learn more about the Kinesiology and Exercise Sciences Program.

Our Vision

What is our purpose as a Kinesiology and Exercise Sciences Department?

Being invaluable source for ideas and information in the fields of health, movement, coaching, therapy, medicine, gerontology, athletic training, and myriad more fields of knowledge, making it an indelible resource for the local community and the state of Hawaiʻi

Incorporated into the vision of the department is the development of tracks or emphases of study. As the department expands, the department remains cognizant of the overlying concern of its students: preparation for post-graduate success, whether that entails immediate employment, achieving certification/licensing, or attending graduate school. Students can choose between the Allied Health, Applied KES, and Health Promotion tracks.

A group of KES Strength and Conditioning students

Our Degrees and Campus

The University

The University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo is characterized as a comprehensive, diverse, regional university. Scholarship and research are an important part of faculty work and student engagement, but the primary focus is on providing high-quality baccalaureate and postgraduate education.

Who Are We?

Aerial view of the UH Hilo campus

  • We educate students in the fields of kinesiology, athletic performance, sports medicine, athletic training, and physical/occupational therapy in order to prepare them for careers in these, or tangential, professions.
  • The premier program on the Big Island of Hawaiʻi, representing students from the state of Hawaiʻi.
  • We present an inviting and exciting small-program opportunity targeting Hawaiian, Western-United States, and foreign students who want a comfortable and personal education experience.

What We Do

  • To teach, advise, mentor and befriend our students
  • To provide solid foundations in kinesiology, exercise sciences, and sports and therapeutic medicine
  • To conduct student-driven research
  • To set up and guide students for internships in our fields
  • To support advanced education
  • To provide references and recommendations for advancement of our students
  • To advise on professional progression, and on post-secondary education
  • To provide career-related experiences

Who Benefits from Our Work the Most?

  • Hawaiian, Western-United States, and foreign students
  • The university (re: tuition funds from students; our availability as a recruiting option for potential students; national reputation of faculty members)
  • Other departments of the university (interdepartmental research experience)
  • Parents of students who are comforted by our care and professional advancement of their children
  • Businesses in the community who take in our students for internships, or hire our students