photo of Karen Hixson

Karen Hixson

Professor of Exercise Science

Dr. Karen Avery Hixson’s specialty is Exercise Physiology.  She teaches: Introduction to Exercise Science, Nutrition, Biomechanics, Exercise Physiology, Science of Strength and Conditioning, and ACSM’s Exercise Physiologist certification preparatory course.  In addition to teaching, she directs the Exercise Science Program, advises students, supervises exercise science internships, and currently serves on the Tenure and Promotion and General Education Committees.  Her research interests include exercise and disease, spirituality and health, and graded exercise testing. 

She holds 16 professional certifications or licensures from the American College of Sports Medicine, National Strength and Conditioning Association, North Carolina Department of Public Instruction, and the American Red Cross.  She has 36 years of teaching experience and has presented locally, regionally, and nationally.

Dr. Hixson enjoys teaching at a women’s college because women participate more in the classroom and in leadership roles on campus.  She has also taught in coed situations and many times she found herself constantly encouraging the women in the class to speak up more. She doesn’t have to do that at Salem.

In her spare time, Dr. Hixson enjoys spending time with family, traveling, going to movies and concerts, working out (weight lifting, elliptical, yoga), social dancing, hiking, attending a variety of sporting events, and volunteering for the Red Cross.  She is also an avid Patriots and Red Sox fan!

  • BS, Springfield College - Health, PE, Biology
  • MA, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill - Exercise Physiology
  • PhD, University of North Carolina at Greensboro - Exercise Physiology and Public Health Education
Doctoral Thesis:

Association between Blood Pressure, Selected Health Behaviors, and Religiosity in Adult Females.