Medicare Coverage of Exercise Instruction and Assistance

What It Is

Assistance with or instruction in physical exercise, either in a class setting or from an exercise therapist or trainer

What's Covered

Medicare doesn't cover the services of an exercise therapist or trainer, or physical exercise classes.

Note: Medicare Part B covers a limited amount of physical therapy and occupational therapy, which can include some exercise instruction, if the therapy has been prescribed by a physician.

If you have a Medicare Part C Medicare Advantage plan: Medicare Part C Medicare Advantage plans, also called Medicare Advantage plans, must cover everything that's included in original Medicare Part A and Part B coverage. But sometimes a Part C plan covers more, with extra services or an expanded amount of coverage. (Co-payments for Part C plans may also be different than those for Part A or Part B.) To find out whether your plan provides extra coverage or requires different co-payments for instruction in or assistance with physical exercise, contact the plan directly.

What Medicare Pays

Medicare pays nothing for the services of an exercise therapist, trainer, or class.

Important: Regardless of the rules regarding any particular type of care, in order for Medicare Part A, Medicare Part B, or a Medicare Part C plan to provide coverage, the care must meet two basic requirements:

  • The care must be "medically necessary." This means that it must be ordered or prescribed by a licensed physician or other authorized medical provider, and that Medicare (or a Medicare Part C plan) agrees that the care is necessary and proper. For help getting your care covered, see FAQ: How Can I Increase the Odds That Medicare Will Cover My Medical Service?

  • The care must be performed or delivered by a healthcare provider who participates in Medicare.

Was this medicareinformation helpful?

7 Comments So Far. Add Your Wisdom.

about 1 year ago

Does Medicare pay for Curves Exercise Program?

Anonymous said over 1 year ago

Does Medicare pay the fees of a rehab physility for someone with a very bad knee and the Doctor thinks the excersize there is good for me and I need it so it won't stiffen up?

about 2 years ago

Patients has medicare part A&B who can appy exercise program free? would you lease to she me where I can find out location (77083). Thanks

almost 3 years ago

When I belonged to Curves For Women, the monthly fee was paid by Sterling. Since my doctor has suggested that the YMCA water arobics would be better because of my bad back. My question is, does Medicare pay for the YMCA fee? Thank you.

almost 3 years ago

I thought Medicare Part A paid for gym memberships in the Silver Sneakers program. A Cal Optima adviser told me that there is a program called One Plan or something like that...

over 3 years ago

Hello talons1, Thank you very much for your question. If you'd like, you can post your question in our Ask & Answer section, here: ( ). Take care -- Emily | Community Manager

over 3 years ago

wuold medicare pay for the class if you are congestive heart failure to improve yuor ehart and if you had diabeetetes?? paying for it be more better for medica than letting some be in coffin in the ground.


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