Approximately 70 percent of the deaths among Americans each year are attributable to chronic disease. This trend is not only threatens the wellbeing of our population, but also has serious associated health care costs. The benefits of physical activity mean that exercise professionals are uniquely positioned to help fight the negative trend of chronic disease. It is because of this stark reality that the American Medical Association (AMA) and the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) co-launched the Exercise is Medicine (EIM) Initiative in 2007. A global health initiative managed by ACSM, Exercise is Medicine focuses on encouraging primary care physicians and other health care providers to include physical activity "prescriptions" when designing treatment plans for patients. The providers then refer the patients to EIM Credentialed Exercise Professionals for guidance. To learn more about EIM click here. For a quick video overview of the EIM Solution and the role of the credentialed professional, click here.
With nearly half of American adults being affected by chronic disease, there is an increased demand for trained exercise professionals who are prepared to deal with the unique challenges these clients face. Because of these challenges, EIM candidates must have an accredited exercise professional certification and at least one year of documented experience to qualify for the Exercise is Medicine Credential training course. This rigorous process means that an EIM Credentialed exercise professional will be well qualified to work with special population clients.
In terms of career advancement and growth potential, an EIM credentialed exercise professional will be considered a valuable resource to a large potential client audience. Depending on the level of EIM Credential earned, you will be qualified to work with clients who are apparently healthy, have stable chronic disease, or those who are considered high-risk clinical populations. (Reference the chart below for EIM Credential Levels.) Additionally, you will have an opportunity to promote your services to health care providers and develop a strong referral network. On top of this, a diversified set of credentials will make you more attractive to potential employers looking to hire exercise professionals who can serve a wide range of clients.
There are three levels of the EIM Credential designed to match patients' needs with exercise professionals adequately prepared to meet them. Consult the chart below to determine which level suits you best.
|Level||Patient Population||Credential Requirements||Credential Exemptions|
|Level 1||Individuals at low or moderate risk who have been cleared for independent exercise.|| ||To be exempt at Level 1, you must answer YES to both of the following: |
|Level 2||Individuals at low, moderate, or high risk who have been cleared for independent exercise.|| ||To be exempt at Level 2, you must answer YES to both of the following: |
|Level 3||Individuals at low, moderate, or high risk including those requiring clinical monitoring|| ||To be exempt at Level 3, you must answer YES to both of the following: |
Ready to take the next step in your exercise professional career by earning the EIM credential? Check out the preparation materials and eligibility requirements. Those who qualify may then enroll in the online training course. You can also take the training course at an in-person session.