Top 4 Myths about Health Coaching.

Top 4 Myths about Health Coaching.

Posted by Lori Shemek; April 17, 2014

Health coaching, wellness coaching, life coaching, there are so many new terms out there that it is hard to decipher what is legitimate and what is right for your needs. What is even more difficult to understand is whether or not the rumors about these new terms are true. What is health coaching really all about? Although each term has a little different focus, health coaching is defined as, “The practice of health education and health promotion within a coaching context to enhance the well-being of individuals and to facilitate the achievement of their health related goals”. Here are a few myths about health coaching and why they are untrue.

1. A Health Coach is just a psychiatrist who didn’t get a doctorate degree.
Although it is true that many health coaches do not have a doctorate degree, they are required to go through specific training in order to practice. It is required that health coaches are have certifications in health coaching, nutrition and any other specialty areas from an accredited association before they can practice. More importantly, health coaches are more involved with their clients on a regular basis than psychiatrists typically are. Health coaches work with their clients to create lifestyle changes for an overall healthier and more balances life, instead of only treating mental and emotional issues. They work to prevent or recover from common life threatening diseases with their clients and help them to live the life they want to free from health limitations.

2. Health Coach is just another term for Dietician or Nutritionist .
Yes, health coaches do practice many similar methods that dieticians and nutritionists use, but their job is more involved than that. A dietician or nutritionist will give a client a meal plan and instruct them on how to make smart choices when it comes to their food. A health coach will do those things, but also meet with the client regularly to check on progress and keep accountability. Health coaches also work to help the client understand the affects that food choices have on overall health and wellness in the client’s life.

3. It’s better to go to a doctor than a health coach for my chronic medical issues.
Doctors are there to help patients treat the symptoms of chronic health issues and prevent other symptoms from arising in the future. This is beneficial, and the advice of your doctor should always be taken into account, but health coaches can help to go further into keeping your illnesses in control and even eliminated them. Health coaches are taught to use more holistic methods when it comes to any problem clients are facing. Balancing out other areas of health and life can consequentially reduce or eliminate issues in other, seemingly unrelated areas. This approach helps clients life with their illnesses instead of just dealing with them.

4. Health coaching is too time consuming.
Health coaching revolves around the client. If the client wants to spend an hour every day working with their health coach to tackle a difficult issue, he or she can do that. Most people are happy with a few sessions a month. Health coaching is completely dependent on the client. Health coaches are willing to work around their clients schedules so that making positive life changes can be convenient and not a burden. If the client is not ready to make the effort needed to change his or her life and get back on track, than health coaching will not be effective. Image:  

-Tina Hamilton, Guest Author  

Author Bio: Tina Hamilton is a journalist, blogger and social media guru. You can usually find her online or walking along one of Southern California’s beaches with her dog, Joey. You can find her on Twitter.