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Active Voice: Managing Chronic Disease Using Technologically Driven Wellness Solutions

from By Dan Lynch

Active Voice is a column by experts in science, medicine and allied health. The viewpoints expressed do not necessarily reflect positions or policies of ACSM.

Dan Lynch, president of VisionBridge, has extensive experience in developing medically integrated health and wellness centers. He provided leadership on the ACSM Preventive and Rehabilitative Exercise Committee in efforts that led to the early preventive exercise certifications. He has written several articles for
ACSM’s Health & Fitness Journal® on subjects related to this column.

Ken Dychtwald wrote about the aging of America in Age Wave in 1989. He discussed the tremendous influence baby boomers would have on the opportunities and challenges of the future. In today’s world we are experiencing both ends of that perspective, though in reverse order: from challenges to opportunities.

The challenge in the health care environment is the rapid rise in the cost of health care. This rise is due to many causes, but one of the primary reasons relates to individual lifestyle choices that have led to premature chronic illnesses. Recent data indicates that only 12 percent of Americans over the age of 16 (of whom there are approximately 238 million) belong to health clubs, and a whopping 69 percent of the total American population have NEVER belonged to a health club. This recent data are not surprising since I have observed that upwards of 55 percent of members in medically integrated health-and-fitness centers come from what I call "first-time joiners." more

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