The rallying cry is, “Let’s change healthcare!” From all corners of the medical universe, there is agreement that change is necessary. The biggest questions are, “What is the change?” and, “Who will make it happen?”
It is well recognized that the population of individuals over the age of 65 in the United States is expanding. With age, comes natural and expected physiologic deficits in the musculoskeletal system that affect the pursuit of exercise and fitness.
There is an opportunity for wellness and wellness coaching to impact the lives of millions of people in a life-saving way. 79 million Americans are estimated to have a condition called pre-diabetes. Usually symptom free, without intervention they will develop full-fledged Type II diabetes within ten years and possibly endure physical damage to their heart and circulatory system along the way. Yet, according to the American Diabetes Association, if a person is successful at lifestyle improvement they can completely avoid the onset of diabetes 70% of the time.
Although arthritis today is considered one of the leaders of the pack in the epidemic of chronic illness, millions of those affected are living fulfilling lives and living them well.
According to The Institute of Medicine’s New Report on Living Well With Chronic Illness, 8.6 million Americans are living with disabilities related to arthritis. The Arthritis Foundation reports it as “striking one in every five adults, 300,000 children and as the leading cause of disability in the United States.” Arthritis is a chronic illness that impacts many.
Those living with arthritis can live well and have a good quality of life by employing lifestyle interventions as medicine, in conjunction with, prevention, joint protection, weight management, physical activity, wise food choices, stress management and a good medical regimen. By combining all these necessary recommendations into a personalized Wellness Strategy and Plan, a coach can assist an arthritis patient in organizing what is important for them to live life well. The Wellness Plan then becomes a map by which to navigate toward managing and maximizing the patient’s best life possible.
A common factor also influencing quality of life for those challenged by arthritis or any chronic illness is what is called “adherence” or “medical compliance”. Lack of adherence to medical and lifestyle improvements is a large piece of the cost of healthcare today and contributes to the epidemic of chronic illness. Average patient adherence rates for prescribed medications are about 50 percent, and for lifestyle changes they are below 10 percent.
The World Health Organization reports “improving adherence also enhances patients’ safety because most of the care needed for chronic conditions is based on patient self-management, use of medical technology for monitoring, and changes in the patient’s lifestyle.” A coach assists in supporting patient compliance and self-accountability and works with the patient to forward the action toward their goals.
The same report goes on to say “patient-tailored interventions are required and must be customized to the particular illness-related demands experienced by the patient. There is no single intervention strategy that has been shown to be effective across all patients.” Therefore, working with individuals one on one is of primary importance for enhancing their quality of life. Coaches work with clients on a one on one basis assisting them in creating a wellness plan that is personalized to them.
Dr. Bennett and team’s article Health Coaching for Patients with Chronic Illness states “it is critical that those with arthritis understand, agree with and participate in the management of their chronic condition. Health coaching is one way to accomplish this function.”
A long-term study done at Stanford University indicates that interactions with a coach can significantly increase the health of people with chronic illness. Stanford’s Chronic Disease Self-Management Program brought patients (including those with arthritis) together with a coach. “Subjects who took the Program, when compared to those who did not, demonstrated significant improvements in exercise, cognitive symptom management, communication with physicians, self-reported general health, health distress, fatigue, disability, and social/role activities limitations. They also spent fewer days in the hospital, and there was also a trend toward fewer outpatient visits and hospitalizations.”
It was found “This type of self-management, through coaching, is so effective it has been endorsed by the Surgeon General of the United States.”
“Give a man a fish, and he eats for a day. Teach a man to fish, and he eats for a lifetime.” Health & Wellness coaches work with a client to tailor-make a wellness plan that includes self-management, coordinating their medical regimen, and forwarding lasting lifestyle changes. Working together with a coach, a patient can successfully manage their condition and create a strategy to living life well with arthritis.
What Can Health & Wellness Coaches Do for You?
► Work with you to take an inventory of your current wellness status
► Guide and facilitate your personal well-life vision toward the life you would like to live
► Work with you to develop a personalized Wellness Plan that is tailored to your needs. The wellness plan becomes the map that integrates your important areas of focus including: self-management support, the medical regimen, and lifestyle improvements.
- Self-management support:
- Promote healthy behaviors
- Impart problem-solving skills
- Assist with the emotional impact of chronic illness
- Provide regular follow-up and accountability
- Encourage people to be active participants in their care
- Assist in patient self-advocacy
- The medical regimen – facilitation of a patient-directed approach
- Scheduling and attending medical appointments
- Asking your medical team the right questions
- Following through on daily prescribed medications
- Tracking your regimen to support success
- Lifestyle improvements
- Physical activity
- Healthy eating
- Eliminating risk factors
- Promoting healthy behaviors
► Bridging the gap between clinician and patient.
- Health coaches can bridge these gaps between the medical team and patient by following up with patients and guiding a patient-centered approach, asking about needs and addressing obstacles, addressing health literacy, cultural issues and social-class barriers.
- Health Coaches help patients become self-directed in navigating the health care system. Coaches can help with patient self-advocacy and coordination of care
► Provide accountability & support for you to be successful
- Offer emotional support
- Coping with illness is emotionally challenging. Coaches can offer emotional support and help patients cope with their illnesses. They also assist patients in seeking out additional emotional support that will help them achieve and maintain success.
► Provide ongoing evaluation of progress toward your goals
- Re-evaluating success
- Resetting goals & action steps as necessary
- Provide acknowledgement & support of successes
- Assist in maintaining forward momentum toward goals
► Serve as a continuity figure
- Coaches travel with the patient as an ally and assist them with staying the course while implementing their wellness plan.
► Assist in patient-directed achievement of successful lifestyle behavioral change
- Be your ally and walk shoulder to shoulder with you
Dr. Linda Gogl is a Doctor of Physical Therapy with Board Certification in Orthopaedic’s with over 20 years in healthcare. She currently serves as Director of Development and Team Member for Real Balance Global Wellness Services. Her professional experience includes outpatient Clinical Director, Developer/Director of an APTA Credentialed Orthopaedic Residency Program, Director of Quality Assurance for the largest physical therapy private practice in California, Credentialed Clinical Instructor, Adjunct Professor of Anatomy & Physiology, Research mentor and Clinical Coordinator for University affiliations. More recently she also served as National Director of Training and Implementation for OptimisPT, a physical therapy software system.
- Arthritis Foundation. Arthritistoday.org
- Bennett et al, Health Coaching for Patients With Chronic Illness. Fam Pract Manag. 2010 Sep-Oct;17(5):24-29.
- Harris et al. The Institute of Medicines’s New Report on Living Well With Chronic Illness. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Volume 9 – September 20, 2012.
- Lorig et al. Chronic Disease Self-Management Program, 2-year Health Status and Health Care Utilization Outcomes. Medical Care. Volume 39, Number 11, pp 1217-1223.2001
- National Prevention Strategy, Clinical and Community Preventive Services, National Prevention Council 2010. www.surgeongeneral.gov/initiatives/prevention/strategy/preventive-services.pdf
- National Prevention Council Action Plan: Implementing the National Prevention Strategy www.surgeongeneral.gov/initiatives/prevention/2012-npc-action-plan.pdf
- World Health Organization. Adherence to Long-Term Therapies. Evidence for Action. 2003.
Is there really a difference between CBT and DBT? Both Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) come from the same family of psychotherapy. Psychotherapy is one of the best treatment methods available to treat a wide range of emotional and physical health conditions, like depression and anxiety….
Have you ever wondered why a particular diet, workout routine or cleanse offers remarkable results for some people, but not others?
It’s because of bio-individuality and Metabolic Chaos®.
When it comes to health, there is no one size fits all! Each person is unique on a cellular and metabolic level. They have their own health strengths and weaknesses, or vital voids as Reed Davis, the founder of Functional Diagnostic Nutrition® calls them. So, instead of treating symptoms, tests and/or assessment results, the key is to assess the specific needs of each person.
Functional lab testing is the best way to analyze a person’s specific needs on a deeper level. The comprehensive data obtained through lab testing can be used to inform and guide a health-building program, to get real results that last a lifetime.
Reed Davis, the founder of Functional Diagnostic Nutrition®, worked for over a decade as a certified nutritional therapist and case manager perfecting lab testing and resources. And now for over 10 years, he has been sharing his knowledge through the FDN course with a mission to empower as many people as possible to help as many people as possible to get well and stay well naturally.
After helping hundreds of clients, Reed discovered that while each was unique in their health challenges, they also had much in common – H.I.D.D.E.N. stressors.
Through clinical work, Reed identified 5 foundational lab tests essential for in-depth insights in order to uncover a client’s H.I.D.D.E.N. stressors and reveal their true healing opportunities to build their health.
Having access to lab testing, knowing how to properly interpret the results and use the data to guide a health building protocol is what makes certified Functional Diagnostic Nutrition® Practitioners so successful in getting their clients real results.
Like you, most of our FDN practitioners started off as health coaches, personal trainers, nutritionists, nurses, homemakers or were in non-health related fields and changed their career because they were inspired by their personal health journey.
No matter what their prior profession was, all of them have these 3 things in common:
- A strong desire to help others on a deeper level
- Willingness to walk the talk and empower others to do the same
- A feeling as if they were missing some very important pieces to the health puzzle.
FDN’s complete methodology has empowered over 3,000 trainees in over 50 different countries to help people get well and stay well naturally.
Join Reed Davis in our upcoming webinar and learn how to get real results for you and your clients, and create a successful business doing what you love while positively impacting others.
Reed Davis is a Nutritional Therapist and has been the Health Director and Case Manager at a wellness clinic San Diego for over 15 years; he is the Founder of the Functional Diagnostic Nutrition® Certification Course.
So you go to your annual check-up and your doc says “whoops your blood pressure is up and you’re 15 pounds heavier than last year. I’ll give you some meds, but you’ll have to lose weight and get into shape, OK?
You say OK, you walk out and then what?
Join a gym, hire a personal trainer, go on a diet, take a walk? You might do one or several of these because, after all, it’s a new year and a new you.
Right? Right, and you try something. But how long is it till you throw up your hands and say, “ugh, I got started and now I’m off the track just like last year.”
What went wrong? Maybe nothing, except you might not have been psychologically ready to take those steps.
For any change there is a process. One of the models that are used is the transtheoretical model of behavior change (TTM) developed by James O. Prochaska , Ph.D
There are 5 stages:
Precontemplation – going along not aware of a need for, or not wanting a change.
Contemplation – recognizing a need to do something to improve your situation and considering making some sort of change.
Preparation – doing some research, making small changes, or at least thinking about what you’re going to do to help yourself.
Action – Actively making lifestyle changes,
Maintenance – Having made changes, keeping the healthy lifestyle going.
All too often we jump from contemplation to action without being ready for the change. It can feel like getting off a plane in Antarctica wearing shorts and a T-shirt. You wanted to be there but you weren’t ready for what that change would be like, and what you’d need to do to stay there comfortably.
But there is help, a new kind of help.
The health and fitness industry is rising to the challenge of our increased involvement with our own health care.
Many of us still think of fitness professionals as muscle heads with great bodies and not much else. Those types will always exist, but more educational opportunities including degrees and certifications are spawning a new breed of health & fitness professional, one that’s part of the health as well as the fitness industry.
Enter the Health & Wellness Coach
Not to be confused with a personal trainer, the Health & Wellness Coach is a consultant who helps you go, through, preparation, to action and on to maintenance. The coach helps you determine your health and wellness goals and needs. Once you have a path to your goals the coach continues to work with you to help you find the behavior modifications, activities, facilities and allied health professionals (MDs, Ph.Ds, Nurse Practitioners RDs, PTs, Personal Trainers, Exercise Instructors, etc.) to support your healthy lifestyle. You can do this on your own, but having someone with health industry knowledge who has your back, who is nonjudgmental, who just wants to help you focus and succeed can make all the difference.
Mirabai Holland MFA, EP-C, CHC is one of the foremost authorities is the health and fitness industry. Her customer top rated exercise videos for Age-Onset health issues like Osteoporosis, Arthritis, Heart Disease, Diabetes & more are available at www.mirabaiholland.com. Mirabai also offers one-on-on Health Coaching on Skype or Phone. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I was back in my hometown recently, where I health coached and taught for over 20 years. I missed my clients so I decided to take some of them out for tea and dessert. I thought for a minute the dessert…
One of the most powerful tools in any coach’s arsenal is his or her knowledge of which coaching techniques to apply to a given situation and how to apply them to best meet clients’ needs. “Sharpening the saw,” or continually honing one’s skills, ensures coaches are on top of the most effective practices.
Learning new skills and coaching techniques is easier than ever through eLearning–educational programs delivered online. Online courses are more accessible, less expensive and faster to master than traditional educational programs. And best of all, they can be taken at the learner’s convenience, 24/7/365.
So how does eLearning help coaches sharpen their saw? In his mega-bestseller The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, author Franklin Covey describes “sharpening the saw” as a way of “preserving and enhancing the greatest asset you have–you. It means having a balanced program for self-renewal in the four areas of your life: physical, social/emotional, mental, and spiritual.”
By engaging in eLearning to expand their knowledge of proven, effective practices, coaches can treat clients with a wider variety of issues. These same practices also work on the coach! Taking online training gives coaches the opportunity to see their own issues, in each of the four areas mentioned by Covey, from a fresh perspective, making them better practitioners and better people in general.
Approaching eLearning not only as a tool to gain skills as a coach, but also as a way to live to one’s full potential provides extra motivation when taking online courses and makes “sharpening the saw” more fun!
Reprinted with permission from the SoleLife Blog.
Nichole Lowe is a board certified Health Coach, Educator and Presenter. She is the Founder and CEO of SOLELIFE™. SOLELIFE™ is an online training platform that offers proven advanced training for coaches and health practitioners in Dialectical Behavioural Therapy (DBT) to improve its customers’ client results and grow their referral business. It’s an all-in-one solution for professional coaches where they can learn new skills, connect with peers, and gain valuable industry knowledge in a first-ever fully social eLearning platform.
If you’re interested in learning more about DBT, SOLELIFE offers a free course, Understanding DBT.