What is an Integrative Health Coach
and How Do You Become One?
Developed By – Dr. Wendy Nickerson
Integrative Health Coaching
2017 is a year for change! For becoming your best self. For living with positive emotions, uplifting thoughts, and feelings of total physical wellness. This is very important, but even more exciting is that you can learn to do the same for others. You can do this by becoming a Certified Integrative Health Coach. This program is accredited with the American Association of Drugless Practitioners (www.aadp.net) and the Canadian Health Coach Alliance (www.healthcoachalliance.ca) and allows you to apply to become Board Certified as a Holistic Health Practitioner. The focus of this program is training the mind to heal mental, emotional, and physical illnesses. It encompasses interwoven evidence-based aspects of Mindfulness, Neuroscience, Positive Psychology, Psychoneuroimmunology, Energy Psychology, and Cognitive Behavioral Techniques. Healing aspects of spirituality and the power of perception, insight, awareness, thoughts, words, and energy fields are taught throughout this course.
Please click on the blue words below as they are links to essential additional information.
Integrative Health Coaching is the most modern method of providing optimal care and education to people in hospitals, organizations, and communities in light of the health care crisis and changes in North America. Hospitals have found an enormous difference in health care costs and their bottom lines, ultimately saving millions of dollars each year by increasing the number of health coaches that they hire. This type of health coaching is referred as ‘integrative’ for two reasons. On the macro level, it can easily be integrated into a hospital, medical system, organization, or community. On the micro level, it addresses the whole body, including the mind, emotions, spirit, and body. Ultimately, Integrative Health Coaching has been determined as the missing link in healthcare, and the newest tool for sustainable change. Research studies have shown that health coaching has been extremely beneficial in decreasing healing times after surgery, decreasing chronic disease symptoms, providing education on foods that alleviate depression and anxiety, teaching coping skills to deal with chronic pain, providing support and advocacy for teens struggling with substance abuse, motivating patients for behavioral, psychological, emotional, and nutritional changes, and providing the most effective stress management skills for newly diagnosed cancer patients, just to name a few.
Let's discuss some of the activities of an Integrative Health Coach
Integrative Health Coaching is the most modern and necessary career position in all forms of health care. Most people think that health coaches only teach people how to eat healthily and develop an exercise program. However, it involves so much more. For example, neuroscience is embedded in this training. This is more than teaching clients that stress induces sleep-deprivation hormones and that Lumosity can help with memory maintenance. It involves creating a psychoactive space that triggers learning and neurogenesis (new neurons in the brain). Neuroscience also indicates the importance of helping the client stay relaxed during the session, allowing them to develop new neuropathways and synapses in the brain, ultimately leading to improved thoughts, emotions, and behaviors. Research has shown that the coach’s ability to hold the emotional state of another, fosters changes in the brain of the client, ultimately creating ‘aha’ moments that change the course of life forever.
Because of the mind-body-spirit connection, and all of the research indicating that negative thoughts and emotions cause physical pain and illnesses, that stress depletes the immune system making people more susceptible to cancer, that mindfulness strategies of relaxation create positive outcomes before and after surgeries, and that certain foods and lack of specific nutrients lead to mental health issues, integrative health coaching is very multi-dimensional. These are just a few of the key aspects, however learning all of the information is crucial to optimal well being and to becoming an effective Integrative Health Coach.
Integrative Health Coaches can develop their private practices within their communities or they can work in any health care system or organization. They might provide presentations or talks in their communities or organizations teaching the newest methods of creating mind, body, and spirit wellness based on the latest research findings. Others use their expertise to provide individual health coaching sessions. Some are so passionate about this topic, that they are willing to volunteer their services in an effort to spread their knowledge.
The Most Inclusive, Modern, and Integrative Health Coach Training Program
I have developed and am teaching a 15-week Integrative Health Coach Training Program via live virtual internet sessions, the phone, email system, and discussion boards. Please plan on attending the next upcoming Informational and Q & A session for more information. You will see the link to sign up under the Events Tab.
In each weekly live virtual meeting session I will discuss and explain each week’s topics and assignments that will enhance your knowledge base and skill. This program is designed for you to take this training from the convenience of your own home and on your personal time schedule, however the live weekly meetings will be held at the same time each week. You will need to commit to approximately 8-10 hours of weekly study and activity time, including our 90-minute weekly live virtual meeting.
This uniquely designed Health Coach Training Program differs from others as it focuses on psychological and emotional wellness in addition to nutrition and exercise. It provides more training on holistic health techniques. Ultimately, when we are feeling good psychologically, our bodies are less prone to illness and heal much faster if an illness has already occurred. After receiving the training, you will be in a position to safely and confidently coach and mentor others in the community, organization or hospital, to psychological, emotional, and physical health through the use of the most recent evidence-based coping skills and strategies. Keep in mind that you will NOT be providing therapy. You can find out more about my style of health coaching by clicking here.
Topics and Skills
Some of the weekly topics in my program include coaching guidelines and ethics, maintaining healthy boundaries, understanding how stress leads to mental, emotional, and physical disorders, developing listening and intuition skills, motivational interviewing, coping skills for depression and anxiety, assessing for suicide, strategies for dealing with grief and loss, specific foods and nutrients that are detrimental to brain functioning, mindfulness relaxation strategies, coping skills for the elderly, the power of forgiveness, developing advocacy skills, and strategies for helping teens struggling with substance abuse issues. In addition, you will be provided guidance on how to develop your health coaching practice (developing proper forms, brochures, marketing strategies, etc.) I provide you with post-graduate support in using your expertise to develop a career.
If you would like to be on the cutting-edge of making a difference in your own life, your community, or your workplace, please do join me via the next upcoming Informational webinar. The link to join is under the Events Tab.
Qualifications for Becoming an Integrative Health Coach
The qualifications that are required to register and complete the Integrative Health Coaching Training Program include:
- A passion and interest in ultimate mind, body, spirit wellness.
- A genuine strong desire to help others achieve optimal health and lead happy lives.
- A personality that leads to developing rapport and positive relationships with others.
- An ability to commit to ten hours per week for 15 weeks in study and training.
- All education levels are appropriate, however some post secondary education or training is preferred. Those with nursing or nursing aid backgrounds would be qualified, however a medical background is not required. Those who are self-taught in health and wellness would excel in this program. Additionally, this program would be complementary to graduate degree education and knowledge.
- The cost of the program is $2999. In many cases, your place of employment will pay for this training. Some scholarships and individual payment plans are available.