Who's The Biggest Loser

Spring is finally here and many Australians are looking to kick start their fitness programs before bikinis and boardies come out of hibernation ready for summer beach visits.  This is coinciding with The Biggest Loser being back on our screens and, whilst it is encouraging the importance of getting healthy, it is important that Australians, particularly overweight or obese individuals, are aware of the risks of implementing an exercise program without consulting a health professional.

Unfortunately, obesity often comes with other pre-existing health conditions, such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes and chronic muscle and joint pain, just to name a few.  It is vital to consider these other conditions before designing an exercise program to ensure you are exercising safely and taking necessary precautions when engaging in physical activity.

Being overweight or obese, or having underlying health conditions, should not deter people from exercising, rather encourage them to seek guidance from a health professional with necessary qualifications, namely Accredited Exercise Physiologists, to appropriately manage such issues.

When it comes to fitness professionals, what many people do not realise is that Personal Trainers are generally only qualified to work with healthy people, so consulting an Exercise Physiologist ensures you are getting the right advice for your condition.  Having a holistic, healthy approach to exercise, rather than just focussing on weight loss, is much safer and can yield longer lasting health benefits across the board, including sustained weight loss.

With non-specific health measures, such as Body Mass Index (BMI), many people could be considered a ‘normal’ weight, but still not be healthy with respect to their overall body composition and fat percentage, particularly if they partake in a lot of sedentary behaviour.  Utilising tools, such as DEXA scans, to measure total body composition, enables Exercise Physiologists to prescribe even more specific exercise programs to suit each individual and their associated underlying health conditions.  No two bodies are the same, and therefore, no two exercise programs should be the same!

It is important to remember that getting healthy is about incorporating a range of behaviours and lifestyle changes that ultimately improve how your body is functioning.  The focus should always be on developing an exercise and nutrition program that is sustainable over the long-term, maintaining healthy life choices.

The Exercise and Sport Science Association (ESSA) is currently running an awareness campaign surrounding the importance of engaging a qualified professional to design a customised exercise program for your needs.  Those wanting to get involved and show their support for the campaign (entitled If you don’t consult a professional, who’s the biggest loser?) can use the hashtag #WhosTheBiggestLoser on social media.


Whether your goal is to lose weight; get fit and toned; or just to make a lifestyle change, contact BodyPlus Physiotherapy on (08) 7226 6349 to arrange your booking with our Exercise Physiologist.