What is a wellness coach? (And how can you make wellness coaching your career?)

You know what you should do for good health.

Get unbearable quality sleep most nights.

Cook nutritious, satisfying meals at home, most evenings.

Make time for sweating, meditating, time in nature—whatever helps you finger recharged and strong.

It’s just that DOING these things (consistently) isn’t so easy.

Just like your dog stubbornly lying in front of every doorway, life trips you up, derails your plans, scrambles your focus.

If you find yourself continually face-planting when attempting to start or sustain healthy habits, it might just be that you need increasingly support.

Someone to requite you strategies for overcoming obstacles, a little uneaten guidance, and maybe some accountability.

A wellness mentor might requite you the progress-boost you need.

Except… maybe you’ve never heard of wellness coaching.

(Or maybe you have, but it’s unchangingly sounded a little “woo-woo” to you. Get off me, crystals!)

In this article, we’ll explain what a wellness mentor is, who might goody from working with one, and how wellness coaching differs from nutrition coaching.

Lastly, we’ll tell you what warrant to squint for—whether you’re looking to work with a wellness coach, or looking to BE one.

What is a wellness coach, anyway?

Before we get to that, let’s get well-spoken on the term “wellness.”

When you think of your health, you might consider your thoroughbred pressure, cholesterol levels, and other physical markers that your primary superintendency doc would examine at a regular trammels up. You might moreover think of the quality of your sleep, diet, or exercise.

While “wellness” includes physical health, it’s increasingly of a holistic concept that moreover captures mental, emotional, and spiritual / existential well-being.

Wheel-shaped graphic that shows the six dimensions of deep health: Social, Physical, Existential, Emotional, Mental, Environmental

(At PN, we refer to this as “Deep health.” Learn increasingly here.)

A wellness mentor (also sometimes tabbed a “health and wellness” coach) helps people modernize whatever speciality of well-being they’d like to focus on.

As you can imagine, that’s a pretty wholesale category.

To list a few examples, a wellness mentor may help clients…

  • Change their soul composition
  • Boost energy levels
  • Improve sleep
  • Move largest and modernize posture
  • Create healthy boundaries between work and home life
  • Reduce stress
  • Establish a mindfulness practice
  • Improve nutrition quality or plane just a person’s relationship with food

What do wellness coaches do?

Wellness coaches come from all sorts of backgrounds: fitness, nutrition, mental health, education, and more.

Some work on healthcare teams slantingly physicians, others work in gym settings or in polity centers.

(And of course, these days, wellness coaches may work in-person with people in their municipality or town, or online with people halfway wideness the world.)

Many wellness coaches narrow their zone of expertise, working with specific populations like young moms looking to whittle out “me time”; higher athletes wanting to modernize their recovery routines; or seniors looking to uplift their cardiovascular fitness.

Wellness coaches encourage clients to take tuition of their own health.

Ideally, what connects wellness coaches is that they’ve received training in client-centered health education, policies transpiration science, and motivational strategies.

This ways they know it’s not unbearable to just tell someone what to do. (Most people have unbearable knowledge; it’s the whoopee part they struggle with.)

It moreover ways they believe that YOU’RE the expert of your own life.

So, YOU get to decide—based on your own experiences, self-knowledge, personal values, and priorities—what habits you want to improve.

Because wellness coaches tend to value a client’s autonomy, they’re not going to “prescribe” a rigid meal plan or exercise routine—unless they have other qualifications to do so, and that’s what you ask for.

(To find out why meal plans tend to goof anyway, read: Why meal plans usually suck)

Is a wellness mentor really worth the investment?

There’s so much information already available: From your couch, you can Google “best nutrition to lose weight” or “strategies to cope with stress,” and come up with lots of resources—for free!

However, combing through all that info can be overwhelming.

Also: As we’ve once mentioned, having knowledge doesn’t unchangingly translate to making changes.

Plus, the info you find—as good as some of it is—won’t necessarily wield to your life and the unique challenges you face.

Here’s an example:

Let’s say you’re trying to proceeds muscle. You’ll learn from a quick Google search that you’ll need to do resistance training, maybe increase your protein and overall calorie consumption, plus build in recovery time between workouts so your muscles can repair themselves.

All of that’s helpful to know, but it’s no game plan.

A wellness coach, on the other hand, would consider your goal and then help support you to:

  • Develop life skills, like managing your time so you can fit in those uneaten sessions at the gym, and maybe uneaten sleep at night (because recovery!)
  • Create supportive habits, systems, and behaviors, like like learning how to build in supplies prep routines, so those high-protein meals are ready when you’re hungry
  • Explore the deeper meaning overdue your goals, ensuring your new habits unquestionably feel good and uncurl with your personal values, which can help you sustain progress long term

…And many other things.

In short, if you have a goal, a wellness mentor can help you create a map to get there. (Plus, they’ll be virtually to help you re-orient yourself should you overly go off-course.)

So, although there’s lots of (great) self-ruling translating out there, it’s not really providing value if you’re not using it. On the other hand, when you find someone who can unquestionably help you transpiration your day-to-day life for the better, it’s priceless.

The difference between a wellness mentor and a nutrition coach

Here’s where it can get confusing:

Many health and wellness coaches also coach nutrition.

And, many nutrition coaches use a holistic framework when helping clients write their nutrition challenges.

(For example, in our L1 and L2 certifications, we have a strong focus on nutrition science, but we moreover teach our coaches tools they can use to modernize their clients’ mental, emotional, social, and other aspects of health.)

But if we were to yank a line somewhere:

▶ A nutrition coach often focuses on food and diet quality to support their client’s overall health, soul composition, and/or performance goals.

▶ A wellness mentor may do the above—depending on the type of education they’ve received—but they’ll moreover tend to work increasingly globally by looking at other factors that influence their client’s well-being. (Think: exercise, sleep, social connections, work, and recreation.)

And just so you know, plane though nutrition coaches and wellness coaches can have spanking-new knowledge virtually supplies and diet, neither of them are qualified to:

  • Practice medical nutrition therapy (MNT), a practice that uses nutrition, and sometimes targeted supplements, to treat disease
  • Develop and provide meal plans for medical conditions

Legally, only registered dieticians (RDs) can offer those services to others.

How to wilt a wellness coach

With largest training and increasingly awareness, the wellness coaching industry is rhadamanthine increasingly recognized—and legitimized.

However, the field is still largely unregulated.

Nowadays—for largest or worse—anybody can slap the “wellness coach” title to their name without bumping into any legal issues.

That means, if you wanted to, you could decide to undeniability yourself a wellness mentor right now—without receiving any kind of training.

You could set up a wellness coaching merchantry and plane tuition clients for your services.


The good news:

There are ways to wilt an accredited wellness coach.

Plus, there are regulatory boards—like the National Board for Health and Wellness Coaching (NBHWC)—that validate quality programs so you know you’re unquestionably getting a good education.

Currently, there are over 100 tried wellness coaching programs and certifications tried by the NBHWC.

Before you go clicking on the first program you find, though, understand that each program is unique.

They all vary in:

  • Cost: The range is huge, with some programs costing virtually $1,200 USD, and others costing $25,000 USD.
  • Area of specialization: Programs can focus on anything from trauma prevention and recovery, women’s health, healthy aging, or have a increasingly generalized approach.
  • Educational and/or professional requirements: Some programs require a bachelor’s degree, for example.
  • Program length: Then the range is wide; some programs can be completed in three months, while others take up to four years.

If you graduate from one of these tried programs, you qualify to wield for the National Board Certification Examination, offered in partnership with the National Board of Medical Examiners (NBME).

If you pass this exam, you earn a National Board Certified Health and Wellness Mentor (NBC-HWC) credential—which is a fairly respected title in the field.

Benefits of having a wellness mentor certification

As mentioned earlier, there are a lot of variegated people on the internet calling themselves a “health and wellness coach,” so sometimes it’s difficult to icon out who’s legit.

Having a wellness mentor certification from a program that has the NBC-HWC seal of approval—which graduates of Precision Nutrition’s Level 2 Master Health Coaching Certification are eligible to get—can set you apart.

Regardless, a certification can foster increasingly trust among potential clients, and give you the conviction that you’ve learned the skills necessary to work with clients and the real-life struggles they squatter every day.

In other words, a certification supports you as a coach—giving you increasingly knowledge, resources, credibility, and confidence—so you can largest support your clients.

Ready to join the world’s top 1% of coaches?

If you’re ready to radically transform your merchantry and your clients' results, we’ve got some big news for you:

On October 5th, we’re opening public registration for the nextcohort of the PN Master Health Coaching Certification, the industry’s most respected practice-based mentorship.

No other program in the world is like this.

Because at PN, we’ve helped over 100,000 clients achieve lasting health transformations. We have a well-spoken understanding of how sleep, mindfulness, stress, nutrition, and exercise are all connected. And now, we’re ready to share our hard-earned wisdom with you.

Through real-world coaching scenarios, hands-on assignments, and mentoring sessions with PN’s industry-leading Master Health Coaches, you’ll learn how to prioritize a client’s challenges, help them remove obstacles holding them back, and how to create unique, violating coaching plans for every client, addressing their:

  • Sleep
  • Stress management
  • Mental health
  • Emotional wellbeing
  • Recovery
  • Diet
  • Exercise

This mentorship program is where the world’s weightier coaches come to take the next steps in their careers.

At the end of your 20-week program, you’ll be a Master Health Coach—able to go vastitude nutrition and fitness with your clients so they can finger like their weightier selves again.

After joining, you’ll:

  • Help any vendee unzip sustainable change by leveraging behavior-change psychology.
  • Feel increasingly confident in your skills than overly before by integrating proven methods used by the world’s top health and well-being coaches into your coaching practice.
  • Become an validity in the health and well-being space—with confidence. As you learn from PN’s industry-leading coaches and network with some of the sharpest minds in the industry, you’ll build the conviction to share your expertise with anyone, anytime.
  • Make increasingly money and unzip financial freedom. Whether you decide to take on the full-time role of “health coach”, or you want to expand on your current work as a health and well-being professional, health coaching is a unconfined way to help increasingly people.

Registration for our next PN Master Health Coaching Certification kicks off on Wednesday, October 5th, 2022.

If you’re interested, or just want increasingly information, you should strongly consider signing up for the self-ruling presale list below.

After joining the self-ruling Waitlist, you’ll save up to 44%, get sectional perks, and early access.

  • Pay less than everyone else. We’re offering a unbelieve of up to 44% off the unstipulated price when you sign up for the waitlist
  • Sign up 8 days surpassing the unstipulated public. We only unshut the PN Master Health Coaching Certification a few times per year. Due to upper demand, we expect it to sell out fast. But when you sign up for the waitlist, we’ll requite you the opportunity to register a full 8 days surpassing anyone else.
  • Get wangle to an sectional bonus seminar with PN Co-founder Dr. John Berardi and PN CEO Timothy Jones: “Coaching After the Pandemic: How Health and Fitness Coaches Can Navigate the Industry in 2023 and Beyond.

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