Health and wellness is far from a new trend. Being physically fit and mentally at ease are perennial topics of conversation that tend to rear their heads during discussions of New Year’s resolutions and even quarterly goals. While the idea of being fit is far from new, the way in which Americans are choosing to prioritize their health and wellness in a post-pandemic world may be changing. 

Instead of taking the DIY route, many Americans are choosing to work with a coach. In fact, 18% of respondents have already used a health and wellness coach to help achieve their personal goals, while another 18% plan to do so. That adds up to more than one-third of respondents (36%) who have experience working with a health and wellness coach or who are interested in working with one (excluding those who are unfamiliar with health coaching).

So who is interested in a coach? As it stands, the greatest interest comes from women and Gen Z adults aged 18-24, with highest overall usage coming from the lowest income earners ($50K or less per year).

Of course, there are many reasons why someone might choose to work with a coach. As the data show, smokers have a high interest in working with a coach, possibly to help them kick the habit once and for all. 

But it’s not just physical results that Americans are looking for. Emotional well-being may also be driving interest. According to the data, those who have felt more stressed this year are much more likely to use a health coach than those who have not felt very much stress.

Health and wellness coaches are also popular amongst: 

  • Those who follow fitness trends. 
  • Those who report they’re not very healthy. 
  • Those who have been to the doctor the most frequently in the last 12 months. 
  • Those who work fully remote (perhaps giving them more time to meet with a coach, since they’re not commuting). 
  • Craftsmen and laborers, as well as those who work in tech or medical fields and the service industry.

What Americans Want to Fix  

So what do Americans want to improve when they seek out a health and wellness coach? When asked to choose the top three areas of health and well-being they want to improve (out of seven categories), perhaps not surprisingly, Americans chose physical health and fitness by a landslide – 60% of U.S. adults name it as their top area of improvement. (Additional recent data has shown that Americans are especially motivated to lose weight post-pandemic.) This is followed by improving sleep (39%) and nutrition and eating (36%).

Mood and mental well-being is a top priority for nearly 3-in-10 Americans (29%), while ‘changing old habits’ and improving social relationships tie at 15%. Improving work-life balance resonates strongly for 1-in-10 adults. It’s also worth noting that since the pandemic disrupted social connections and increased stress, these numbers indicate that Americans may now be ready to bounce back in these areas of their lives.

Finding a Health and Wellness Coach

Typically, it’s up to the individual to seek out health and wellness coaching if they have an interest in pursuing it. However, data show 1-in-5 who have used a health coach before did so through a program offered by their employer. Others have found health coaches through their doctors’ offices/health clinics and gyms/health clubs. Respondents were the least likely to find a coach through their family/friends or by searching online/on social media (n=1,011).

Increased employer-sponsored health coaching could have a big impact. According to the data, 62% of U.S. adults would be at least ‘somewhat likely’ to participate in coaching through a health and wellness program if it was offered through their job.

Those most likely to participate are employees who do craftsmen/laborer work, followed by those who work in operations/sales. Once again, 18- to 24-year-olds are the most interested. However, there is substantial interest from 25- to 34-year-olds, as well as those 55 and older. 

Clearly, health and wellness coaching is having more than a moment. The desire to achieve physical and mental wellness is igniting interest across a wide range of ages and drawing attention from a variety of employment types. So whether companies choose to provide their employees with in-house access to coaching, or if coaches remain more of an independent pursuit, Americans appear increasingly committed to their well-being as we move into the second half of 2023. 

Interested in more consumer insights into the shifting health and wellness trends? Get in touch. Receive a free month of premium content access when you book a meeting.