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Get Your Doctor Off the Couch and into Your Club

A recent report noting that doctors who exercise are more likely to recommend exercise to their patients really shouldn't surprise anyone. The report, presented at the American College of Sports Medicine's 58th Annual Meeting and Second World Congress on Exercise is Medicine, surveyed freshmen medical students in Colombia. It found that the students who said that physical activity counseling was relevant were 1.7 times more likely to exhibit healthy levels of cardio respiratory fitness and 3.2 times more likely to have normal triglyceride levels than their peers who said that physical activity counseling wasn't relevant. Students who were healthy, met the current U.S. physical activity guidelines and had normal cholesterol levels also were more likely to strongly agree with the concept that an active doctor's exercise counseling will be more credible and motivating to patients.

How many of us have doctors who could use a little physical activity counseling themselves? Well, why not offer it to them? You are a physical activity expert, aren't you? Offering your doctor and others in his or her medical practice memberships to your fitness facility is a good way to show them all that your club has to offer, help them get in shape and, perhaps, improve your chances that they will recommend your club to their patients.

Some club operators are already reaching out to doctors and finding financial success by doing so. Other club companies are reaching out to hospital fitness centers to provide their expertise in facility management. Both trends show that the medical community is becoming even more important to the fitness industry. It's time for you to take a look at how you can get involved.

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