We all have busy lives, and if you work from nine to five for the entire week, then the idea of fitting in some exercise might fill you with dread. This is why many office workers can gain a stone a year from a combination of boredom eating and a sedentary lifestyle. However, there are ways to encourage your workers to engage in more physical activity, and this offers many advantages for your company, as well as their health. Not only are healthier workers less likely to take sick days, but they also are more alert and productive, leading to better morale all around.
Some of the health benefits of regular exercise include:
- Helping to maintain a healthy weight
- Preventing heart disease
- Boosting energy and improving mood
- Helping with sleep
- Making you look and feel more youthful
Although most people know of these benefits, actually getting them out their office chairs and into exercise is a challenge of its own. Here are a few things you could do to encourage them:
Make it a competition
Having a target or a competitive edge to exercise can be a good way to encourage healthy office banter, and it means you can reward those who complete certain physical challenges. You could enter a team in a charity 5k run, or have a weight loss competition amongst staff with prizes for the biggest loser.
As well as having employees compete against each other, why not organise a team building day with plenty of physical challenges? This could include orienteering, climbing, or anything where people have to work as a team. Remember that some won't be as fit as others, so you'll need to have challenges at different levels. Sports such as cycling are good, as even the unfit can enjoy a bike ride, but it's also something you can do at higher levels. Look at the bikes on sites such as www.fatbirds.co.uk, and you'll be able to get some inspiration for some cycling related activities. Organising a team building day is a great way to reward staff for their efforts, as well as allowing them to enjoy a day out and strengthening relationships.
Start a team
Whether it’s football, netball, or something more adventurous, starting a sports team can be a great way to get people involved in physical activities. You could either have different departments playing each other, or challenge other companies in the local area. You don't need to play at a hugely advanced level, just start by getting some people together after work in a local park, then go from there.
One advantage of having people play for their company is that you can get your name and logo out there. Once you're playing matches, consider having uniforms made with your company's details. This is free advertising and means your team will look more professional.
Leave the car at home
Many employees stumble from their beds, to the car, to work in the mornings. However, by walking or cycling to work, they could get some exercise and arrive much more refreshed. This also has huge environmental benefits, and means your staff will save money by buying less fuel. There are even tax benefits to be had, and if you take part in the government's cycle to work scheme, both you and your employees could save money and gain some serious green credentials.
Getting active for just a couple of hours a week can make a big difference in your workers lives, so think of some ways you can get them out of their office chairs and into something a little more challenging.
Fat Birds Don’t Fly Ltd is a retail business in the UK offering a vast range of bikes and cycling accessories.