Browse by Type

i3 Concept |

Wellness Makes Cents


Staggering numbers of Americans are not physically active, have poor health (obesity, heart disease, diabetes) and struggle financially (living paycheck to paycheck, lower credit scores, paying more for credit, insurance, etc.).  


To address the problem of under-banked and under-served populations, our team wants to leverage the proven correlation between Physical Fitness and Financial Fitness by creating an “alternative Credit Score” that Credit Unions could use to determine an individual’s financial credit worthiness.  The solution would leverage the positive correlation between physical health and financial wellness to engage employees, members, and the communities we serve in behaviors that positively affect their lives.

Test Results:

At the on-set of the program we conducted a “Pre-Survey”:

77 participants completed the survey:

  • 55% had less than $1,000 in their Savings Account
  • 43% either didn’t know their credit score or reported it being less than 680
  • 38 respondents felt they wanted to lose more than 20 pounds
  • 54 respondents worked out 90 minutes or less each week


Fast forward 4 weeks to the last step in the program, which was to complete a “Post-Survey”:

  • 28 participants completed the Post-Survey (36% of the original group):
  • 61% felt the program contributed to a mild+ improvement in their physical activity
  • 50% felt the program contributed to a mild+ improvement in their spending habits
  • 46% encouraged others to complete the challenges with them
  • 79% thought that offering a member who is under-banked or has a low or no credit score a version of this program in order to create an “alternative” credit score would be a good idea.
  • 93% stated now knowing the correlation between financial and physical health that they would be willing to do more physical and mental challenges to earn points towards financial products and / or solutions

Related Content

  • Blog | | From the Archives

    Failure, Future and Cooperative Finance

    • William Azaroff
    • David Klavitter

    When we joined the Filene Research Institute’s prestigious i3 (Ideas, Innovation, Implementation) Group in late 2012, we were excited. That’s because we were invited to join a group of peers and colleagues from credit unions across North America to focus on innovating concepts, solutions and advancements in service of credit unions. And we didn’t mean to, but we started off by breaking some rules.