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How To Become a Wellness Coach: Is This the Career for You?

How To Become a Wellness Coach: Is This the Career for You?

Find out how to become a wellness coach, what to expect, and how you’ll help clients. Discover if this work aligns with your skills.

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“Wellness” can feel like a bit of a buzzword. It’s an industry built around products that support good health. Focusing on being well means people strive to optimize their physical, mental, and spiritual states. 

People seek out wellness in many ways. Someone wanting to get in shape might hire a personal trainer and nutritionist. If we wish to control our anxiety, we might meet with a mental health professional. And to help us make the most of our wellness efforts, we may seek the help of a coach. 

Coaches help anyone who needs motivation and guidance to achieve their wellness goals. While we can’t prescribe the route to take, we can help clients stay the course. 

If you like the sound of helping people overcome challenges and celebrating with them when they reach their health goals, wellness coaching might be for you. This article explores how to become a wellness coach and how these coaches can excel at their job. 

Why you should become a wellness coach

The best reason to become a health and wellness coach is because you have an interest in the field, while an interest in topics like nutrition, self-care, and exercise is a bonus. If you tick that box, here are a few more reasons to consider a career as a wellness coach.

  • You support healthcare professionals: As a wellness coach, you don’t just help clients — you support healthcare professionals. A nutritionist may give a person a dietary plan for weight loss or to manage a chronic disease. A wellness coach helps this individual follow their dietary plan by creating an accountability tracker and motivating them to succeed. 
  • You’ll have options: Since wellness is a broad field, coaches specializing in this field can find a niche. You can work to help people stop smoking, improve their relationships, or adopt a more positive mindset. You can also work with clients one-on-one or in groups and from various working locations, whether that’s your office, a gym, or a healthcare setting (in support of doctors, etc.).
  • The work is rewarding: The services you provide don’t only help your clients — they support you. As a wellness coach, you can strive to lead a healthy life and maintain a positive outlook to serve your clients better. 

What makes a great wellness coach

Your interest in wellness is a great start — but here are some of the skills all coaches share.

When we speak clearly with our clients about expectations, boundaries, and goals, we set them up for success. So much of coaching is conversing openly about our client’s goals and challenges — we must make it clear that we’re listening and are prepared to help them. 

  • The ability to teach: Coaches are educators. Wellness coaches must provide information for their clients on specific health topics and break it down in a digestible way. While wellness coaches aren’t nutritionists, they should still be able to explain concepts like macronutrients in relevant settings.

Remember that wellness coaches help put a client’s health plan into action. Even though a coach may not devise a meal plan or an exercise schedule, they should be able to explain the importance of following through and answer questions on the topic. Coaches should also know when the client is better off getting information or support from their doctor or therapist. 

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How to become a wellness coach

There are no strict wellness coach requirements, but we recommend that any aspiring coach educate themself as best as possible before taking on this role. Coaches who properly prepare for this career know their subject matter inside and out and understand what they can and cannot do. While it’s not therapy, coaching is sensitive work that influences a person’s well-being. Great coaches take that responsibility seriously. 

Here’s how to prepare for this line of work.

  • Earn a related degree: There’s no wellness coach degree, but you can earn a bachelor’s degree in a topic related to health or wellness, like nutrition, exercise science, or psychology. If you already work in healthcare and are looking to become a wellness coach, you might already have that skill set. 
  • Get a wellness coach certification: Becoming a certified wellness coach gives clients increased confidence in your program. The following organizations have wellness coaching courses:
  • Gain experience: Before starting a coaching practice, find a job supporting a wellness coach or related healthcare professional. This will bolster your education, improve your coaching techniques, and could provide you with client experience. Plus, it builds your resume. When you start your own practice, coaching prospects will know they’re in good hands. 
  • Set up your own business: Write a business plan that outlines your mission, intended services, marketing plan, and financials. Once you have a clear picture of your dream business, register your company with your state and pitch your services. Social media is a great place to start marketing if you’re on a budget. Make sure you only take on the clients you know you can handle before building your way up to a full-time practice.

A final word on wellness

You can’t pour from an empty cup. While you’re teaching others how to value their needs and care for themselves, don’t forget to do the same. 

Staying organized is one way to free up time and foster the work-life balance you deserve. Practice allows you to store intake information, message clients, send documents, and schedule appointments. Try it today.

Free coaching contract templates

We worked with our lawyers to create coaching contract templates, free for any coach to use. Plus, a couple of sample agreements.

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