DEFINITION OF CLASS:
This is professional and administrative level work involving the planning,
development, implementation and maintenance of the fitness component of
the Fire and Rescue Services Health and Wellness Initiative. The employee
in this single position class, working collaboratively with lead staff
of the medical, physical rehabilitation, and behavioral health components
of the Wellness Initiative, compiles data, analyzes trends, and develops
integrated strategies to address issues, coordinate program components,
and provide for the effective and efficient delivery of health and wellness
services to Departmental Staff. This includes scheduling, coordinating
and conducting annual fitness evaluations, and providing fitness prescriptions
for Departmental staff. Contacts include Wellness Initiative lead staff,
the Department Director, management, supervisory, and line staff, committee
staff members, representatives of other County departments, colleges and
universities, community, public and private fitness facilities in order
to evaluate data; identify trends and develop strategies to improve fitness
programs; reduce on- and off-the-job injuries, prevent and reduce acute
and chronic health problems, reduce the number of Workers Compensation
claims, lost work time, early and disability retirements; evaluate current
practices in wellness programs; and develop public and private partnerships
to enhance the fitness program. The employee advises top level Department
administrators on all matters involving physical conditioning, and presents
and justifies program goals and objectives, and the strategies and budget
for achieving them. While this class of work may entail some public service/assistance,
it is incidental to the primary focus of the work performed. Work is generally
performed in an office environment and involves common, everyday risks.
Performance of the work does involve occasionally leading a variety of
exercises and demonstrating exercise techniques, requires the maintenance
of personal physical condition, and leading by example.
The Exercise Physiologist is responsible for developing and improving the Department's fitness programs, and collaborating with Wellness Initiative staff to manage nutrition, weight management and stress reduction programs. The employee, in collaboration with a physician, physical rehabilitation specialist, and mental health professional, and with oversight from a Fire/Rescue Assistant Chief, is responsible for the planning, development, implementation, improvement, and maintenance of the Department's physical fitness component of the Wellness Initiative. The employee has full technical responsibility for her/his area of specialization, and keeps the supervisor apprised of potentially controversial matters. Although a framework of general guidelines exists, the employee will conduct research; analyze current physical fitness programs, trends involving types of injuries, physical conditioning, and program impact; and develop new approaches and guides for improving physical conditioning. Complexity of the work is derived from its highly specialized nature. The employee will schedule, coordinate, and conduct fitness evaluations and prepare fitness prescriptions for a large number of staff; evaluate data, identify trends, and develop strategies to improve programs and resolve problems. The work of the position is to improve and maintain the ability of the Department to provide emergency services to the entire community.
EXAMPLES OF DUTIES: (Illustrative Only)
Develops, provides training, guidance and support to, and maintains a
network of peer fitness trainers for more than forty Fire/Rescue work
Schedules, coordinates, and conducts annual fitness evaluations, and prepares fitness prescriptions for County Fire/Rescue and volunteer personnel.
Attends regular meetings with lead personnel from the medical, physical rehabilitation, and behavioral health components of the Wellness Initiative to evaluate data, identify trends, and develop strategies to develop and improve fitness programs, reduce on- and off-the-job injuries, reduce and prevent acute and chronic health problems, Worker's Compensation Claims, and lost work time; and evaluate the most up-to-date practices in wellness programs.
Attends Joint Health and Safety Committee meetings, and meets with organizational safety personnel, to provide and share program feedback, and identify and address/resolve issues.
Develops and maintains an inventory of County owned fitness equipment, including equipment condition and maintenance status; acquires new, and disposes of out-dated equipment; manages equipment maintenance and warranty programs; develops and provides training on proper equipment use; evaluates program equipment needs; and develops, defends, and monitors program budget.
Markets and advocates for the program within and outside the Department, which includes making presentations to employees, other County departments and agencies, elected officials, and the general public.
Plans, develops, and manages related programs involving such areas as nutrition, weight management, and stress reduction.
Develops, maintains, and analyzes a confidential database of group statistical data including age, gender, weight, fitness data (flexibility, muscular strength and endurance, aerobic capacity, and other pertinent factors), and injuries; examines data for trends and correlations; and demonstrates performance measures/outcomes for the fitness program both Departmentally and nationally.
Demonstrates physical exercise techniques, and occasionally leads physical training exercises, to motivate staff and lead by example.
Develops on-going working relationships with other agencies and organizations including colleges and universities, the Department of Recreation, Department of Health and Human Services, and the Office of Human Resources, to collaborate and enhance the fitness program.
Performs related duties as required.
Three (3) years of professional clinical experience as an Exercise Physiologist, Health/Fitness Director, Preventive/Rehabilitative Exercise Specialist, Physical Therapist, or Kinesiologist; or administering corporate wellness programs including fitness, nutrition, injury rehabilitation, and referral to medical and behavioral health professionals.
Education: Graduation from an accredited college or university with a Master's degree in Exercise Physiology, Physical Rehabilitation Therapy, Kinesiology, or a related health area. Certification as a Health Fitness Instructor from the American College of Sports Medicine, or its equivalent, is required.
An equivalent combination of education and experience may be substituted.
Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities:
Considerable knowledge of functional anatomy and biomechanics, including occupation specific biomechanics.
Considerable knowledge of the principles and practices of exercise physiology and managing fitness programs.
Considerable knowledge of the principles and practices of health appraisal and fitness training for a large, diverse population of healthy as well as at-risk individuals.
Knowledge of human development, and of age/sex cohort performance.
Knowledge of pathophysiology and risk factors, emergency First Aid, and exercise safety.
Knowledge of physical rehabilitation theory and practice.
Knowledge of the principles and practices of nutrition, weight and stress management, and biomechanical feedback.
Knowledge of, or the ability to acquire knowledge of the fire fighting, rescue and emergency medical service occupations through ride-alongs and through participation in training and drills at the Public
Safety Training Academy.
Basic knowledge of human behavior/psychology.
Skill in program administration and management.
Skill in the development of fitness assessment protocols and fitness prescriptions.
Ability to collect, analyze, and present data in a clear and effective manner.
Ability to modify programs in response to injury trend data.
Ability to communicate clearly and effectively, both orally and in writing.
Ability to attend meetings or perform other assignments at locations outside the office.
Individuals appointed to a position in this class will be required to
serve a probationary period of twelve months and, if promoted to a position
in this class, will be required to serve a probationary period of six
months. Performance will be carefully evaluated during the probationary
period. Continuation in this class will be contingent upon successful
completion of the probationary period.
MEDICAL PROTOCOL: Core I Exam and Drug/Alcohol Screen
Class Established: May 2001(M)