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ACSM In The News

ACSM is fortunate to be the go-to source on sports medicine and exercise science for several national and international media outlets. You can find some of our most recent coverage below, or you can view archived articles.  

Incorporating Programs that Work: Exercise is Medicine®

by User Not Found | Mar 28, 2012
Fitness facilities should incorporate Exercise is Medicine into their programming to benefit patients referred by physicians.

March 28, 2012



Presentation explains reasons and tactics for executing an EIM program at fitness facilities


LAS VEGAS – Incorporating great programming into a fitness facility is a challenging task – it takes planning, coordination, publicity, training, participation and evaluation. During a presentation at the American College of Sport Medicine’s (ACSM) 16th annual Health & Fitness Summit & Exposition, Sarah E. Meinertzhagen, BSBA, CPT, IMC, discussed the challenges and provided a framework for integrating ACSM’s Exercise is Medicine® (EIM) initiative into fitness facilities around the country.


ACSM and the American Medical Association launched Exercise is Medicine in 2007 to encourage primary care physicians to prescribe exercise for every patient.


“Exercise is Medicine not only benefits the health and well-being of patients, but it can be a vital part of a fitness facility’s programming and the sustainability of a physician’s patient base,” said Meinertzhagen, director of Suffolk, Va.-based FIT Works. “It’s vital for fitness facilities to understand how they can take action on such an important cause.”


The combination of poor diet and physical inactivity is the second leading cause of death in the United States, but tremendous health benefits have been seen with even low levels of exercise. Research has shown that physical activity and exercise can help prevent and treat more than 40 chronic diseases. Exercise is Medicine – now a global initiative – is committed to the belief that exercise and physical activity are integral in the prevention and treatment of diseases, and should be assessed as part of medical care and integrated into every primary care office visit.


“A physician’s willingness to make these referrals will be dependent on a facility’s ability to keep patients safe, keep programs relevant and results-oriented, and their ability to have effective communication with the physician,” Meinertzhagen emphasized.


Reason for incorporating the EIM program:

  • More than 60% of adults do not achieve the recommended amount of physical activity – 25% are not active at all.
  • An estimated 250,000 premature deaths in the United States annually are directly attributable to physical inactivity.
  • Research by the Employee Benefit Institute indicates that 81% of Americans would like to healthier.
  • Nearly two-thirds of patients (65%) would be more interested in exercising to stay healthy if advised by their doctor and given additional resources.
  • Four out of 10 physicians (41%) talk to their patients about the importance of exercise, but don’t always offer suggestions on the best ways to be physically active.



  The American College of Sports Medicine is the largest sports medicine and exercise science organization in the world. More than 45,000 international, national and regional members and certified professionals are dedicated to advancing and integrating scientific research to provide educational and practical applications of exercise science and sports medicine. NOTE: Information presented at the Summit represents the professional opinions of the presenters and does not necessarily reflect the official position of the American College of Sports Medicine.

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