Book Review: Professionalism and Healthcare Ethics for Kinesiologists

Professionalism and Healthcare Ethics for Kinesiologists is essential reading for students aspiring to work as kinesiologists. Throughout the 13 chapters of the book, author Danny Rosenberg focuses on moral reasoning, ethical theories, professional accountability and governance, and codes of conduct, to equip kinesiology students to recognize the legal, moral, and professional obligations of their selected field.  

Rosenberg traces the emergence of kinesiology as a component of the allied health system and a regulated health profession prior to pondering how this rapidly expanding field might progress in the future. I am confident this book will be used across the country as required reading in Bachelor of Kinesiology (or equivalent) degrees in Canada. As Rosenberg outlines, the market is flooded with medical and nursing ethics textbooks, but there is a surprising lack of scholarly attention placed on the unique ethical challenges relevant to students of kinesiology.  

Rosenberg spends ample time engaged in conceptual clarification to ensure readers understand when, why, and how a person can call themselves a kinesiologist, and in doing so he highlights the differences and discrepancies among provinces with respect to recognizing kinesiology as a restricted title, designation, and healthcare field. As more provinces move to create Colleges of Kinesiology, Rosenberg’s book will be essential reading for students seeking certification in this area. Beyond kinesiology students, specifically, the content of the book is relevant for students in athletic therapy, physical education, and the rehabilitation sciences as well.  

Rosenberg analyzes the trajectory of undergraduate kinesiology degrees preparing students for a distinct health profession and to work as part of multidisciplinary healthcare teams or as part of the allied health sciences. Detailed considerations of philosophical concepts such as informed consent, privacy, confidentiality, professional boundaries, conflicts of interest, and clinical judgment are covered. Less philosophical, but equally necessary topics, like recordkeeping and obligations toward infection control, are discussed in detail to provide students with a sense of what will be expected of them if they pursue a career as a kinesiologist. Rosenberg also addresses the outcomes of failing to adhere to codes of conduct or working beyond one’s scope of practice in addressing professional misconduct.  

Rosenberg includes thoughtful discussion questions at the end of each chapter. These reflection questions not only review concepts covered but encourage students to think about and justify their positions on complex questions. His carefully crafted examples provide students with realistic scenarios to test their understanding of acceptable and unacceptable acts. Throughout, Rosenberg clarifies the distinctions between legal requirements, ethical obligations, and professional accountability to help students gain insight into their responsibilities as future kinesiologists. Moreover, readers can apply their understanding of kinesiology ethics by working through the 20 short case studies provided in the penultimate chapter of the book.  

In encouraging readers to make connections between codes of conduct, traditional ethical theories, and their personal values, the book prepares students for the variety and types of ethical dilemmas they may face as future kinesiologists. In this way, the book serves as an outstanding ethical and professional resource and toolkit for aspiring kinesiologists.  

Review Submitted by Sarah Teetzel, Faculty of Kinesiology and Recreation Management, University of Manitoba 

Recent Posts