What is Wellness Coaching?

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  • Written By: wiseGEEK Writer
  • Edited By: O. Wallace
  • Last Modified Date: 17 January 2019
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Despite the significant advances in medical science, there are many people who are still unhealthy. They’re overweight, stressed, or indulging in unhealthy behaviors like smoking and/or excessive alcohol and drug use. Time spent in a doctor’s office is usually minimal, and doctors’ schedules are so packed that they may simply address the issue of wellness by imploring patients to live in more intelligent ways or by delivering a sound lecture on the evils of certain behavior. This often doesn’t help the issue or encourage people to change, but suggesting a patient get wellness coaching instead might. A wellness coach is a trained person who will work one on one with clients to help them find ways to pursue a healthier lifestyle.

The wellness coaching field is fairly new, and began in the late 1990s. It is not the same as having a personal trainer, since exercise is not always the behavioral change that needs to occur. In contrast, a person who is a wellness coach works with clients to encourage them to change aspects of their lives that are most unhealthy, and this could include changing dietary habits, getting more exercise, or quitting smoking. However, a good coach won’t simply tell people they have to start dropping or engaging in behaviors. They’ll work with a client to figure out how present life contributes to those behaviors, and what can be done to change living so behavior change is easier.


In the best sense, wellness coaching creates a relationship between coach and client. The coach looks holistically at the person’s life prior to helping them evolve ideas for changing it. Number of visits and amount of time this could take can be variable depending upon each coach’s preferences and individual need.

Since wellness coaching is so new, there are not yet standards in place for who can be a wellness coach. The recommendation is people look to individuals with degrees in physical fitness, public health, or perhaps nutrition. Combined with this training, coaches should have several years of experience and they should be able to provide multiple references.

Though many doctors see medical necessity in referring patients to a wellness coach, not everyone can afford the services of one. Depending on needs, coaches might require several sessions the first few months at a median price of about $100 US Dollars (USD) per session. Since this is not usually covered by insurance, it may not be accessible for all. Some companies can buy wellness coaching services for their employees in an effort to increase employee health. These services might be offered to any employee for a short duration, usually 2-3 visits at most.



Discuss this Article

Post 4

What is the threshold frequency or maximum number of people a coach can coach through on site interventions and telephonic? Any comments or feedback would be great.

Post 3

Moldova- I think that the future of wellness coaching is bright. Many people want a higher quality of life and often need these interventions to see the error in their ways.

People many times will sabotage themselves from achieving what they really want and the life wellness coach helps them to understand this concept so that they become successful.

This is a source of frustration among a lot of people and often it has to do with their fear of failure than anything else.

Even losing weight could fall into this category. Losing weight allows a person to look and feel better, but many people sabotage these efforts especially when they are almost at their goal weight.

Sometimes the fear of maintaining the weight loss is larger than the fear of not losing weight. Wellness coaching gives us an objective view of why we make the choices that we make and how by making different choices we can choose a better life for ourselves.

The wellness coach job is a rewarding job and wellness coach employment will surely be a vital career for the future.

Post 2

Mutsy- The person addicted to nicotine experiences chemical changes in the body when they smoke a cigarette.

This is why medical interventions might be necessary in order to assist with the physiological aspects of this addiction.

There is also a psychological component as to why the person chooses this particular activity to reduce stress.

Once the medical issue is addressed and the person is taking medication for the addiction and slowly weaning off of the drug, there also has to be cognitive behavioral therapy in order to make changes in the person’s behavior.

A person addicted to cigarettes might then be exposed to a variety of other coping mechanisms all designed to reduce stress but in

a positive fashion.

For example, the person might be told to take a brisk walk when they are stressed or take up a hobby like painting that requires enormous concentration that will force the person to think about something else thus limiting the impact of the stressful incidences.

Post 1

A life wellness coach job really incorporates a healthy change in one’s lifestyle in order to improve one’s quality of life.

Health wellness coaching might involve a facet of the person’s life that can be changed to make the biggest lasting positive effect. For example, if a person is a smoker than a wellness life coach might explore reasons as to why the person continues to smoke despite knowing the negative consequences and the links to diseases like lung cancer and emphysema.

It is really important to understand the motivation of why someone smokes in order to be able to counter that activity with a healthier substitute.

For example, some people feel that smoking has a calming

effect on them. They feel that the nicotine acts as a calming drug that allows the person to cope with stressful situations.

A life and wellness coach will use a holistic approach in counseling a person with a nicotine addiction because the addiction is part physiological and part psychological.

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