IDEA is thrilled to be celebrating 30 years of education excellence in the fitness and wellness industry! Rather than look back at all we’ve accomplished together to advance the fitness profession into a credible and thriving industry, we thought it more exciting to look forward.

In August, IDEA CEO Peter Davis invited all attendees at the 2011 IDEA World Fitness Convention™ to describe their vision for a future that maximally impacts the health and fitness of our world. These many submissions were posted on a Vision Wall in the IDEA World Fitness & Wellness Expo. Readers also were invited in the September issue of IDEA Fitness Journal to send in their ideas. All were then reviewed by IDEA leadership.

We thank you for the many new perspectives you provided for IDEA and for the fitness industry in our shared quest to Inspire the World to Fitness®. We have selected what we believe are the top three Vision Statements (there was a tie in one category, so there are actually four plus an honorable mention). Interestingly, most of the submissions were focused on three general themes:

1. medical and fitness professionals working together

2. childhood obesity: working with schools and families on fitness programming and education

3. wellness communities: being the change you wish to see by bringing wellness education directly to your community.

For their winning submissions, each of the following four authors will receive one free registration to the 2012 IDEA World Fitness Convention in San Diego (July 5–9) to help celebrate our 30th anniversary. Congratulations to all, as well as to our honorable mention!

For all you do to Inspire the World to Fitness, IDEA salutes you!

A Medical-Fitness Marriage

By Rebecca Giusti, DO

My vision is one in which healthcare professionals—physicians, nurses and physicians’ assistants—are educated and aware of the fitness professionals in their region and can direct their patients to those individuals to optimize their health.

As a physician, I am constantly frustrated by time restrictions with my patients. We counsel them to lose weight and eat better, but it is difficult to get our patients to people who can really help them achieve these goals. So guess what? Our patients continue to not eat right and not lose weight, and the morbidity of our U.S. population continues to increase.

I feel that a program could be implemented in medical schools, right from the beginning of a physician’s training, to educate on the various fitness resources available in our communities for our future patients. Ideally, this would be a “marrying” of the medical and fitness professions. My Rx? Make healthcare really effective by providing all people and patients with the proper form of exercise and the right fitness professional to help them meet realistic and sound goals on the path to health and, ultimately, happiness.

Use Project-Style Curriculum to Thwart Childhood Obesity

By Alicia Shewmaker

Our focus needs to shift toward battling with the epidemic of childhood obesity. Teaching children the value of an active, healthy lifestyle will affect generations to come. Our educational system is shifting to a project-style curriculum. Children are assigned a project that incorporates all aspects of education. My vision is to ensure that physical fitness, nutrition, body awareness, anatomy and physiology will be intricate parts of that curriculum—just as math and science will be. Children have been found to learn and retain more in this format, therefore further advancing our cause.

“Being the Change” in Community-Based Efforts (Tie)

By Sally Saenger, MEd

We need to bring movement back into our daily lives! My vision: fitness professionals will be the agents of change for the millions of people who do not get enough regular physical activity in their lives. We need to make activity fun from day one by encouraging movement at an early age and educating others about the continuum of fitness through later years. Communities will establish “ambassadors to health”—not extreme athletes or celebrities—but everyday community members who can inspire their fellow neighbors to be active and stay moving for life. Fitness professionals will not only lead by example, but also reach out to schools, retirement centers, businesses, nontraditional organizations, etc., and volunteer their services to help their community be more physically active in their daily lives.

By Sandra Schaad, MA

1. Schools will promote health and wellness education, K–12, and establish a solid foundation for people to make informed lifestyle choices for longevity with a good quality of life (regardless of how hard marketers might work to sell poor quality products).

2. Fitness programs will blend young children and the elderly, a win-win for both. Children will respect the elderly and develop an understanding about aging; the elderly will remain connected to their community and feel valued. Connect community members and build the love!

3. Health and wellness will become a priority lifestyle choice in our society. Some businesses have started along this path. I can help the movement by “being” this change at my studio and encouraging clients to challenge themselves in the same way.

Healthy Food Can Taste Great! (honorable mention)

By Cappie Geis

My vision is to show people how “healthy food” can taste great—it’s just a matter of knowing how! This can be accomplished by tweaking and “swapping” out fatty and unhealthy ingredients and boosting the nutritional value of fast-food recipes. As a fitness professional, I help people with their bodies; as a nutritionist who is also teaching healthy cooking classes, I feel I am on my way.

IDEA Authors

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