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Health-Based Coaching and Wellness

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There are so many other complementary purposes for health-based coaching, some of which our authors address in this issue. They could be small but significant shifts in habit—say, for changing diets for diabetics and those with depression, or implementing patient conducted physical exercise or therapy for stroke and myocardial infarction patients. They can be addressing potentially existential questions—like the issues of identity which sometimes arise when health concerns change the way people interact with others (such as the onset of significant hearing loss) or their environment. From accountability, to perspective taking, to redefining personal relationships, there are many, many highly useful and impactful tools in the coaches’ toolbox.

In this issue, as in the case of our first two issues of 2018 Future of Coaching, we are assisted quite knowledgably and ably by our colleague, Margaret Cary. She provides a unique perspective as a physician and as someone who has been an advocate for new healthcare policies and improved training and education of healthcare professionals.

We begin by offering several road maps for a health-based coaching strategy. The first road map describes a four-tier approach to health-based coaching that is presented by one of us (WB). It is based on a metaphor offered by Dr. Camara Phyllis Jones of the American Public Health Organization and concerns treatment, amelioration and two levels of prevention.

On the Cliff’s Edge: Four Tiers of Health-Based Coaching

The second road map is provided by Gay Teurman (a clinical and health psychologist) and one of us (WB). It surveys many of the dimensions of health-based coaching and wellness—ranging from biological factors to such health-habit factors as nutrition and sleep. A diverse set of bodily functions (including those provided by the brain and gut) are explored as related to health-based coaching.

Health-Based Coaching: The Many Dimensions

We provide a third essay that focuses on the emerging professionalization of health and wellness coaching. The authors, Frank Ardito and Leigh-Ann Webster describe the formation of the aforementioned International Consortium for Health and Wellness Coaching, while pointing toward the future of this emerging area of professional coaching.

The Professionalization of Health and Wellness Coaching

Our fourth essay points directly to one of the major forces driving the emergence of health-based coaching: a focus in the healthcare community on wellness. Petra Platzer describes the illness-wellness continuum and shows what a focus on wellness looks like and how this focus can be engaged in working with both the providers and recipients of healthcare services.

Focusing on Wellness: A Vital Shift for Improving our Health and Wellbeing

We bring to this issue of the Future of Coaching an article that was first published by the Library in 2013, Written by Joyce Odidison, it concerns coaching to a specific aspect of the wellness challenge. Odidison writes about interpersonal wellness and offers a systemic model of wellness that complements Petra Platzer’s presentation.

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