Observations ‐ Fit to lead: is fitness the key to effective executive leadership?

Christopher P. Neck (Pamplin College of Business, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, Virginia, USA)
T.L. Mitchell (Cooper Wellness Center, The Cooper Clinic, Dallas, Texas, USA)
Charles C. Manz (University of Massachusetts at Amherst, Amherst, Massachusetts, USA)
Kenneth H. Cooper (Founder and Chief Executive Officer, The Cooper Aerobics Center, Dallas, Texas, USA)
Emmet C. Thompson (Alpha Fitness Center, Dallas, Texas, USA)

Journal of Managerial Psychology

ISSN: 0268-3946

Publication date: 1 December 2000


This article describes the importance of fitness (chiefly exercise) for top ranking executive leaders and for their respective organizations. The authors discuss how fitness can contribute to stamina, mental clarity, ability to cope with stress and a variety of other factors that can affect an executive’s ability to lead. The authors support this premise by drawing on key research studies and actual accounts of top executives from a variety of business organizations. The authors feature information obtained from direct interviews with the year 2000 USA presidential candidates, Al Gore and George W. Bush. The authors view them as high profile models of how fitness can be given high priority for maintaining personal effectiveness for even the busiest executive leaders.



Neck, C., Mitchell, T., Manz, C., Cooper, K. and Thompson, E. (2000), "Observations ‐ Fit to lead: is fitness the key to effective executive leadership?", Journal of Managerial Psychology, Vol. 15 No. 8, pp. 833-841. https://doi.org/10.1108/02683940010694323

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Copyright © 2000, MCB UP Limited

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