The purpose of this study was to compare the effects of active and passive recovery on immune system indexes after a graded exhaustive exercise in male college athletes. For this purpose, 20 college athletes of physical fitness training were selected by Cooper test and their BMI and then they were divided into two groups randomly: Group 1 (active recovery) and group 2 (passive recovery). Each subject completed Bruce protocol until exhaustion and then group 1 performed a 15-minute active recovery with 65% to 75% maximal heart rate on a treadmill and group 2 had a 15-minute rest for recovery in a supine position. Then, both groups had their recovery in a sitting position for additional 15 minutes. The blood samples were collected before, immediately, 15 and 30 minutes after the exhaustive exercise. The variance analysis of repeated measures showed a significant increase in leukocytes, lymphocytes, monocytes, neutrophils, CD4, CD8, and a decrease in CD4 to CD8 ratio in both groups immediately after the cessation of the exercise (P<0.05).Both recoveries significantly decreased leukocytes, lymphocytes, monocytes, CD4, and CD8 but there were no significant differences between the two groups during recovery periods. All indexes were approximately located near the baseline at the end of the two recoveries, except for the monocytes in group 1.