What is Exercise Medicine?
Exercise medicine is the use of physical activity to prevent and treat disease. Doctors practicing exercise medicine will promote exercise to their patients in the same way they promote medications or operations. The Faculty of Sport and Exercise Medicine (UK) supports doctors to do this. The Faculty is committed to encouraging the use of exercise in routine medical care, to promoting and improving education for doctors in this area and to developing and expanding exercise medicine research.
What does this mean for me?
Exercise is a powerful tool in the prevention and treatment of disease. With an ageing population, the role of exercise as a therapeutic intervention becomes ever more important. All doctors have an essential role to make ‘every contact count’, to discuss exercise and physical activity levels at every possible opportunity with their patients.
Specialists in Sport and Exercise medicine work closely with NHS trusts and community providers to ensure that exercise is available to all, whatever the level of illness or disability.
The NHS cannot afford to continue to provide a primarily reactive service. Exercise medicine is a way the NHS can prevent disease, reduce the burden of disability and dependence and, importantly, enable people to experience the profound positive effects on mental and physical well being that physical activity can bring.
The Faculty is working hard to ensure the NHS and other medical specialties are aware of the skills and knowledge in Sport and Exercise Medicine, which can be applied to every day healthcare, to help prevent and manage many conditions and diseases.