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Exercise is Medicine Canada

2021 Report


Dr. Jonathon Fowles

National Center Director
Jonathon R. Fowles, PhD


Acadia University

Temporary Host Institution – Acadia University

Founded in 1838, Acadia University is one of the oldest and most respected liberal education universities in Canada. Located just a one-hour drive from Halifax, Nova Scotia and its international airport, Acadia is an integral part of the quintessential college town of Wolfville, overlooking the Annapolis Valley and the Bay of Fundy. The mission of Acadia University is to provide a personalized and rigorous liberal education; promote a robust and respectful scholarly community; and inspire diversity of students to become critical thinkers, lifelong learners, engaged citizens and responsible global leaders. The Exercise is Medicine Canada and EIM on Campus @ Acadia University programs are hosted through the Centre of Lifestyle Studies at Acadia.

National Center

Advisory Board


Jonathon R. Fowles, PhD (Chair)

  • Professor, Department of Kinesiology; Director, Centre of Lifestyle Studies, Acadia University


  • Currently no physician rep on the NAC

Kristin Campbell, Ph.D., P.T.

  • Canadian Physiotherapy Association (CPA) Rep Associate Professor & Director of Clinical Exercise Physiology Laboratory, University of British Columbia;

Scott Howitt, D.C.

  • Canadian Chiropractic Association (CCA)/ Royal College of Chiropractic Sport Sciences of Canada (RCCSS) Rep Director, Sports Medicine Performance Centres; Associate Professor, Canadian Memorial Chiropractic College

Jennifer Bugera, R.N.

  • Canadian Family Practice Nurses Association (CFPNA) Rep - Primary Care Team at St James Town Health Centre,  Department of Family and Community Medicine at St Michaels Hospital, Toronto

Kayla Rector, BKin, Affil Kin

  • Canadian Kinesiology Alliance (CKA) Rep

Shaelyn Strachan, PhD

  • Canadian Society for Psychomotor Learning in Sport & Exercise Psychology (SCAPPS) Rep; Associate Professor, University of Manitoba

Sue Boreskie, M.PE. CEP

  • Clinical Exercise Professional Rep; CEO Reh-Fit Centre Winnipeg;

Nicole Culos-Reed, Ph.D.

  • Academic Rep; Professor, Health & Exercise Psychology, Faculty of Kinesiology, and Adjunct Professor, Department of Oncology, Faculty of Medicine

Taniya Nagpal, Ph.D.

  • Chair, EIMC on Campus, EIMC on Campus Rep: Assistant Professor, Brock University

2022 Goals

  • Governance:  Recruit, train and support new Chair and recruit medical and government representatives to the National Advisory Council
  • Promote awareness of, and Build Engagement in, EIMC’s mission and activities, through:
    • Developing resources for EIMC on Campus groups’ sustainability
    • Building collaborations between professional associations and professionals with increased communication and information sharing, increased social media posts and adding to our website as a ‘home-base’ for evidence-based resources
    • Promote growth of the Professional Network, supported with newsletters, webinars
  • Support education by developing an EIMC Professional Network virtual presentation and targeted presentations for specific health care and exercise professionals
  • Enhance credibility through EIM research and development of a position stands on Exercise referral and medical fitness in Canada and participation in research projects examining the effectiveness of EIM education, integration of PAVS into EMRs, improved models of physician prescribed exercise and exercise referral schemes
  • Promote recognition of exercise professionals through advocacy and support of standards for exercise and fitness professionals and Expand exercise prescription and referral of patients to clinical and community-based exercise professionals, places and programs
  • Continue our policy & advocacy efforts at federal, provincial and regional levels with participation on National Health Fitness Day, ParticipACTION report card, Rx To Get Active and other groups
  • Secure sustainability - by engaging current and new partners to support ongoing operations

2021 Accomplishments

  • Governance: Pursued new Structure - Investigated National Not-for-Profit status
    • Refreshed NAC membership with two new members – (Brian Justin-CSEP; Shaelyn Strachan- SCAPPS)
    • Filled volunteer positions for: Admin Manager, Web Manager, Social media administrators, NHFD rep
  • Promoting Awareness and Building Engagement:  
    • Updated website – transitioned to new website from EIM global, re-organized and updated pages, translated several pages into French
    • Expanded social media presence with x number of posts and  > 3500 Twitter followers, > 3500 FB likes, > 1000 LinkedIN followers and >600 Instragram
    • EIM on Campus at 42 Universities and Colleges (3 new additions), and 18 active chapters, numerous virtual symposia and activities, such as National Exercise Hour (Oct 17 at 430 pm)
    • Launched new professional network – with over 400 registrations
    • Created monthly organizational updates summarized for social media posts
  • EIM Research: published 6 scientific papers (2 more in review), developed 3 practical resources (older adult), contributed to position stand (PA Post-Covid)
    • Furlano JA, Morava A, Wong MYS, Bray NW, et al. Exercise behaviors and resource use among graduate students at a Canadian university: A cross-sectional study. Journal of American College Health. 2021 Nov 17; 1-8. https://doi.org/10.1080/07448481.2021.1967364
    • O’Brien. MW, Shields CA, Dunbar MJ, Crowell JS, Fowles JR. Physical Activity Counselling and Exercise Prescription Practices among Dietitians Across Nova Scotia. Can J Diet Pract Res. 2021 Sep 28;1-6. doi: 10.3148/cjdpr-2021-025.
    • O’Brien MW, Wong MYS, Sui Y, Voss ML, Bray NW, Turnbull N, Nagpal and Fowles JR. Learnings from Exercise is Medicine Canada Workshops as Strategies to Assist Medical Students Promote Physical Activity during and beyond the COVID-19 Pandemic. Journal of Medical Education Research. 2021 1(1): 25-33
    • O’Brien MW, Bray NW, Fowles JR. A Scoping Review of Exercise Referral Schemes Involving Qualified Exercise Professionals in Primary Health Care. Applied Physiology, Nutrition, and Metabolism. 2021 Apr 19. https://doi.org/10.1139/apnm-2020-1070
    • Morgan, T. L., Liscio, M., Leung, P., McEachern, B., Yungblut, S., & Tomasone, J. R. (2021). Exercise is Medicine® Canada on Campus Casebook: Evaluation of a novel knowledge translation tool and lessons learned. Evaluation and Program Planning, 89, 101992.
    • Macridis S, Cameron C, Chaput JP, Chulak-Bozzer T, Clark P, Davenport MH, Faulkner G, Fowles JR, et al. Results From the 2019 ParticipACTION Report Card on Physical Activity for Adults. J Phys Act Health. 2020 Sep 3;17(10):995-1002. doi: 10.1123/jpah.2019-0646. PMID: 32882682.
    • Three EIMC research projects underway
    • Identified Knowledge user: several grants for Arthritis, Aging, Cancer
    • Resources: Older adult Fact Sheets (3) partnership with CSEP/Active Aging Canada.
  • Education: contributed to plans for continuing education with papers and discussions (CASEM, RxTGA) and delivered colloquia (U of Calgary, Dalhousie, U of Toronto, Queens)
  • Exercise Professional Recognition: involved in discussions for Kinesiology regulation, medical fitness certifications and furthered development of local models for Exercise Prescription and Referral (EIM-NS)
  • Policy and Advocacy: contributed to national (National Health & Fitness Day, ParticipACTION report Card, Rx To Get Active, Fit for Change), and provincial (NS PA counseling initiative, Kinesiology regulation) advocacy/awareness efforts

Significant Accomplishments Since 2015

Delivered more than 30 workshops to over 1200 health care providers and have presented more than 35 clinical rounds and symposia at conferences to more than 4000 health care professionals in the last 5 years, including the Family Medicine Forum, Primary Medicine Conference (largest MD conference in Canada), the annual meetings of the Canadian Academy of Sport and Exercise Medicine and Canadian Chiropractic Association and the Canadian Society for Exercise Physiology; Presented Exercise Prescription in Primary Care workshops in most Canadian provinces

  • Published over 10 research articles and 2 positions stands and delivered numerous research presentations on the outcomes of our EIMC workshops and EIMC research activities.
  • Hosted a ‘Think Tank’ on Exercise Prescription and Referral engaging leaders in the field to develop national strategies to integrate EIM into Health care and in communities.
  • Achieved significant advocacy successes with a presence for exercise prescription in health care in the national physical activity strategy ‘Lets Get Moving’, and in national materials such as the Physical Activity Report Card of Canadian Adults and Older Adults
  • Led a provincial EIM initiative in Nova Scotia recognized as one of the top 20 innovations in health care in the province, which has led to programming to deliver exercise support in communities and the workplace
  • Developed and presented an EIM Oncology focused workshop and collaborated on Exercise and Cancer Care workshops for Exercise Professionals nationally, provincially and regionally supporting implementation of National and Regional Cancer exercise community programming
  • Developed a working group on Medical Education Curriculum that identified standardized approaches for medical curriculum in medical schools and continuing medical education
  • Established EIM on Campus at 42 Universities and Colleges, and support 19 active chapters, some with more than 200 members!
  • Built an EIMC Recognition Program and Professional Network with over 400 members
  • Hosted three National EIMC on Campus student conferences
  • Expanded social media presence to > 3500 Twitter, > 3500 FB, > 1000 LinkedIN and >600 Instragram followers

Other Key Papers and Position Stands

  • O’Brien. MW, Shields CA, Solmundson K, Fowles JR. Exercise is Medicine Canada workshop training improves physical activity practices of physicians across Canada, independent of initial confidence level. Can. Med. Educ. J. 2020.  11(5): e5-e15. https://doi.org/10.36834/cmej.68376.
  • O’Brien. MW., C. Shields, L Campbell, S.J Crowell, JR Fowles. Perceptions and Practices of Providing Physical Activity Counselling and Exercise Prescriptions among Physiotherapists in Nova Scotia. Phys. Can. 2019. https://doi.org/10.3138/ptc-2018-0098
  • McEachern BM, Jackson J, Yungblut S, Tomasone JR. Barriers and Facilitators to Implementing Exercise is Medicine Canada on Campus Groups. Health Promot Pract. 2019 Sep;20(5):751-759. doi: 10.1177/1524839919830923.
  • Fowles, J.R., M. W. O'Brien, K. Solmundson, P. I. Oh, C.A. Shields. Exercise is Medicine Canada Physical Activity Counselling and Exercise Prescription Training, Improves Counselling, Prescription and Referral Practices Among Physicians Across Canada. 2018. Appl. Phys. Nutr. Metab, May;43(5):535-539. doi: 10.1139/apnm-2017-0763.
  • O’Brien, M., C.A. Shields, P.A. Oh, and J.R. Fowles. Health Care Provider Confidence and Exercise Prescription Practices of Exercise is Medicine Canada Workshop Attendees. Appl. Phys. Nutr. Metab. 2017. 42: 384–390. dx.doi.org/10.1139/apnm-2016-0413.
  • Thornton, J.S., P. Frémont, K. Khan, P. Poirier, J.R. Fowles, G.D. Wells, R.J. Frankovich. Physical Activity Prescription: A critical opportunity to address a modifiable risk factor for the prevention and management of chronic disease: A POSITION STATEMENT BY THE CANADIAN ACADEMY OF SPORTS AND EXERCISE MEDICINE. British. J. Sports Med. 50:1109–1114. 2016. doi:10.1136/bjsports-2016-096291
Support for the Exercise is Medicine® Initiative is provided by:
Support for the Exercise is Medicine® Initiative is provided by:

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Exercise is Medicine® is a global health initiative managed by the American College of Sports Medicine.