Rx for Health: A Daily Dose of Exercise!


UREC urges individuals and families of James Madison University to increase physical activity during May’s Exercise is Medicine Month. Physical inactivity is a fast-growing public health problem and contributes to a variety of chronic diseases and health complications, including obesity, diabetes and cancer. Even with all the benefits of physical activity, in the U.S. and many other countries, levels of inactivity are alarming. We are facing what is now referred to as an “inactivity epidemic.”

In the U.S., where we are seeing a startling increase in chronic diseases and consternation over health care costs, many see the Exercise is Medicine® initiative as part of the solution. During May, communities throughout the U.S. will hold activities that recognize that physical activity and exercise – shown to help prevent and treat more than 40 chronic diseases – should be part of everyone’s health care plan.

Since 2010, Exercise is Medicine Month has been proclaimed by mayors, governors, Congress and the President. Individuals and organizations of all kinds, from youth groups to universities, churches, fitness centers, corporations and hospitals, hold events aimed at keeping people active and healthy.

“Everyone should start or renew an exercise program now as an investment in life-long health,” said Robert E. Sallis, M.D., FACSM, chair of Exercise is Medicine. “Every person, regardless of age or health, is responsible for his or her own physical activity. There are far more reasons to exercise than excuses not to.”

About Exercise is Medicine®

Exercise is Medicine® is an initiative focused on encouraging primary care physicians and other health care providers to include exercise when designing treatment plans for patients. Exercise is Medicine is committed to the belief that exercise and physical activity are integral to the prevention and treatment of chronic disease and should be regularly assessed as part of medical care. Along with the National Physical Activity Plan, Exercise is Medicine strives to make physical activity a “vital sign” that is routinely assessed at every patient interaction with a health care provider.

“As a family physician, it is very clear to me that my patients who exercise are healthier,” said Dr. Sallis. “They are far less likely to suffer from chronic disease than my patients who do not exercise. If they do develop a chronic disease, they tend to need much less medication to control it. I also find that patients who exercise tend to feel better. They are less anxious and stressed and have more energy than patients who do not exercise. That is why I have concluded that exercise is medicine and that is why I prescribe it to virtually every patient I see.”

About the American College of Sports Medicine

The American College of Sports Medicine is the largest sports medicine and exercise science organization in the world. More than 50,000 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.

About UREC's Exercise is Medicine Program

In collaboration with the University Counseling & Student Development CenterHealth Center, and Student Wellness and Outreach, students may be referred to UREC's Exercise is Medicine on Campus program based on their need for services. Students may also contact team participants for a consultation to determine if our programs and services can meet their needs. Students will have a greater opportunity to increase physical activity levels based on their individual needs and have a better understanding of general nutrition to promote overall health and well-being. Those students who are unfamiliar with UREC programs and services will have opportunities to meet with professional staff members to learn about classes and workshops that could meet their needs (yoga, meditation, dance classes).

Students will initially consult with one of the UREC Professional Staff members on the EIMC team. While one-on-one programs such as personal training and nutrition analysis may not interest everyone, all UREC programs and services will be recommended based on individual goals. Alternatives will be provided based on the needs of each participant. Guidelines will also be provided for those participants interested in exercising outside of UREC.

For more information or to schedule a consultation, contact Holly Bailey for Personal Training, Nutrition Analysis, general fitness and nutrition, Circuit Training or Holly Wade for Yoga, Meditation, Massage, Group Fitness programs, Wellness & body image programs.

Published: Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Last Updated: Friday, June 16, 2017

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