50 Free Open Courseware Classes for Sports Fanatics

Are you a sports fanatic? No matter if you like to watch or play sports, or if you plan to enter a field of sports or sports medicine, you might want to learn more about sports and this field through higher learning. You might like this effort even more if it were free – and that’s the purpose behind Open Courseware. The following 50 open courseware classes for sports fanatics won’t cost you a cent.

You will not earn any college credits for your efforts, but you can wow your team, your coach, or your couch potato buddies the next time you get together to play or watch a sports event. The courses below are divided into categories and listed in alphabetical order within those categories, along with the name of the institution that offers the course.

Sports Basics

  1. Active, Healthy Lifestyles: This course is aimed at physical education instructors and looks at some common misconceptions relating to fitness and activity levels [The Open University].
  2. Anatomy and Physiology: Learn all the basics in this course, then move on to Anatomy and Physiology Part II [Western Governors University].
  3. Biology of Water and Health: This interdepartmental course explores the multi-faceted ways in which water and human health are related [Tufts].
  4. General Human Anatomy: Learn gross and microscopic elements in an overall anatomy course [UC Berkeley Webcast].
  5. Health and Fitness: This module scrutinizes nutrition, emotional health and the physical body to help students gain competence in this subject [Western Governors University].
  6. Human Growth and Development: Aimed at doctors, this course discusses developmental “tracks” longitudinally from birth to death [Tufts].
  7. Introduction to Cardiovascular Fitness: Learn more about how you can increase your cardio health through this online information and its resources [Wikiversity].
  8. Musculoskeletal Pathophysiology: Learn about disorders that affect the musculoskeletal system [Tufts].
  9. Public Hygiene and Epidemiology: Human pathology related to water and sanitation is dealt with, as well as the relation between health and society and environment [TUDelft].

Sports and Nutrition

  1. A Love-Hate Relationship – Cholesterol in Health and Disease: Examine cholesterol’s role in the cell and in the body as a whole, from its function as a structural component of the membrane to its function in signaling [MIT].
  2. Critical Analysis of Popular Diets and Dietary Supplements: Examine the science behind normal mechanisms of weight control, and how weight loss diets are constructed and work [Johns Hopkins].
  3. Introduction to Human Nutrition: This course provides an overview of digestion and metabolism of nutrients [UC Berkeley Webcast].
  4. Nutrient Function and Metabolism: Learn about major metabolic pathways, the function of nutrients in energy metabolism and more through these lectures [UC Berkeley Webcast].
  5. Nutrition and Medicine: This course spans the theoretical to the clinical aspects of nutrition [Tufts].
  6. Nutrition, Exercise, and Aging [PDF]: This course focuses on the benefits and recommendations of exercise for older adults [Tufts].
  7. Nutrition – Proteins: Learn about the importance of proteins and how they are digested and absorbed [the Open University].
  8. Nutrition – Vitamins and Minerals: Learn how vitamins and minerals can affect physical performance [The Open University].
  9. Obesity – Balanced Diets and Treatment: Learn about the components involved in a balanced diet, no matter your weight [The Open University].
  10. Principles of Human Nutrition: This is an integrated overview of the physiological requirements and functions of protein, energy, and the major vitamins and minerals that are determinants of health and diseases in human populations [Johns Hopkins].

Sports Science and Medicine

  1. Basic Human Pathology Parts I and II: Learn about diseases, causes, prevention and more in this basic course for medical professionals [Tufts].
  2. Chemistry of Sports: This course focuses on swimming, cycling and running as means to complete a triathlon.
  3. Chronic Infection and Inflammation – What are the Consequences on Your Health? You can explore the new emerging field of pathogen-induced chronic diseases in this expansive course [MIT].
  4. Confronting the Burden of Injuries: This course is intended to guide students interested in working on injury control in areas with little to no tradition in injury prevention from a public health perspective [Johns Hopkins].
  5. Epidemiology of Infectious Diseases: Do you play sports with a team? This course can teach you more about how diseases are spread and how some diseases can be mitigated [Johns Hopkins].
  6. Health Across the Life Span – Frameworks, Contexts, and Measurements: Learn about contributions of biological and environmental factors to health and human development and much more through this course [Johns Hopkins].
  7. Introduction to Clinical Pain Problems: Learn about general principles of biomedical evaluation and management of common clinical pain problems [Tufts].
  8. Occupational Health and Vulnerable Worker Populations: This course discusses occupational health program considerations, (including all levels of prevention), for vulnerable populations [Johns Hopkins].
  9. Pain and Aspirin: How can simple aspirin help to control pain? Learn the science behind this issue here [The Open University].
  10. Pain Management Strategies in the Elderly: These courses address end of life care for the aging and focuses specifically on how pain affects the body, and how it can be managed [Harvard Medical School].
  11. PE for ME: Readings, discussions and experiential learning introduce various dimensions of Physical Intelligence which students then apply to the design of innovative exercise equipment [MIT].
  12. Physical Intelligence: This Physical Intelligence activity takes an innovative, hands-on approach to explore the kinesthetic intelligence of the body as applicable to a wide range of disciplines [MIT].
  13. Physics of Rock Climbing: The seminar provides an introduction to engineering problems, an opportunity to practice communication skills, and a brief stab at doing some research.This course does not include climbing instruction [MIT].
  14. Yale Global Online – Health: Be prepared! Stay on top of the latest developments and news in health and disease through this university site [Yale].

Actual Sports

  1. A Fitness Program for Cycling: This is a basic module that provides a development program for cyclists [Rice Connexions].
  2. Archery: The purpose of the course is to introduce students to the basic techniques of indoor target archery emphasizing the care and use of equipment, range safety, stance and shooting techniques, scoring and competition [MIT].
  3. Backpacking: Backpacking is a lot of fun, but a hundred things can go wrong out there – only one mishap can turn your perfect and pleasurable adventure into a life-or-death situation. Be prepared with this course [Suite 101].
  4. Dance Movement – warming up and skill development: Exercises for exploring dance and movement as art and as a way to stretch and warm up the body before more strenuous movement [Rice Connexions].
  5. Dance – Warming up the body: This is an introduction to jazz dance with improvisation [Rice Connexions].
  6. Fencing: Learn the fundamentals of fencing, including footwork, bladework, bouting and refereeing [MIT].
  7. Horseback Riding 101: This is a seminar on the history of people with horses [Suite 101].
  8. Improving Aerobic Fitness: This educational unit talks about the types of aerobic exercise that can help you to stay fit [The Open University].
  9. Introduction to Cardiovascular Fitness: Learn the basics about aerobic and anaerobic exercise through this information [Wikiversity].
  10. Sailing: Learn about the MIT Tech Dinghy and how to sail it [MIT].
  11. Scuba: You won’t be able to participate in the class swim portion, but you can learn enough basics to support your ongoing scuba skills [MIT].
  12. Tennis: Gain a working knowledge of tennis through this course that focuses on basic stroke techniques [MIT].
  13. Weight Training: This course is designed for the beginning or novice weight lifter, or for those who have experience lifting but lack proper instruction [MIT].

Sports Miscellaneous

  1. Finding Information in Health and Lifestyle: Learn how to identify and use information in health and lifestyle [The Open University].
  2. Funding Elite Sport: Who funds elite sports in the UK? This course exposes the support that allows these athletes to train and compete [The Open University].
  3. Sports Media and Culture – Who’s Calling the Shots? Learn about key sports moments that were made iconic by media coverage [The Open University].
  4. The Impact of Physical Activity and Obesity on Academic Achievement Among Elementary Students: Learn how the effect of physical activity and obesity affected academic achievement in elementary students [Rice Connexions].

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