Corporate fitness programs can bring a bevy of benefits to employers and employees, galvanizing a culture of health and encouraging employees to embrace wellness at the workplace. Research indicates that wellness initiatives exhibit the best results when they are emblazoned into a company’s ethos and helmed by senior leadership. Frequent communication, a focused spotlight on wellness and a consistent wellness program are some of the initiatives that can be led by managers. In 2009, a review of 28 studies that assessed the effects of physical activity at the workplace revealed that holistic corporate health and wellness programs pivoting on physical activity led to considerable improvements in health and returns on investment while helping to reduce absenteeism and medical leave. Corporate fitness can serve organizations and employees in equal measure, and they don’t have to be pricey investments.
Corporate Wellness On a Budget
Whether you’re on the leadership team or an integral member of a dynamic workforce, you’ll find that wellness has many shapes and forms. Most companies on a shoestring budget cannot afford the luxuries of a gym or a fitness center. They can, however, work towards weaving an organizational fabric that pinnacles health. It is well-accepted that the average adult is required to get a minimum of 150 hours of physical activity per week, and the best way to achieve this number is to break it down into mini segments. By promoting pocket activities in the workplace, employees can learn to incorporate wellness without feeling burdened by unnecessary guilt. A brisk hike up the staircase in the morning, a ten-minute walk after lunch or a quick game of table tennis are some options that can offer bursts of activity. As an employer, it is up to you whether you want to encourage recreational activities throughout the day or limit them to designated breaks.
Mini Activities At the Workplace
There are a host of activities that can offer employees bursts of physical activity during the day. If you’ve been struggling with budget ideas, here are some to get you started.
Standing or walk-and-talk meetings are ideal to discuss ideas quickly and on the go. They save time and increase productivity by eliminating superfluous motions and flippant banter.
By highlighting walking paths in your office and placing distance markers, you can encourage employees to track their progress and set daily walking milestones.
Fun Fact: The OurHealthMate office in Bangalore features standing tables for meetings and a Green Mile that allows employees to measure their walks around the office.
Host Stair Contests
If there’s a staircase in your office building, you’ve got a readymade fitness center! Hold weekly stair contests to see who can climb the stairs the fastest.
Hold a ‘Greatest Loser’ Competition
Anything competitive is fun, and almost always kindles a burning spirit to win. Invite employees to participate in a weight loss challenge to see who rises as the most consistent contestant by losing the most weight. Pin the Greatest Loser of the Week up on the bulletin board and in the cafeteria to stir up some energy and create a buzz.
Collaborate With Fitness Institutes
Fitness, yoga and wellness institutes are always on the lookout for new markets, and it is likely that your workplace is the perfect fit. Tie up with such institutes to host on-site sessions on a weekly basis and charge interested employees a subsidized rate.
Hang Motivational Posters
A motivational poster on the stairway, next to a Green Mile or beside a standing table can serve oodles of inspiration to wary employees who would rather take the elevator. Even screensavers with motivational quotes can work wonders.
Host In-House Teams
In-house sports teams are a great way to build team spirit and to bond employees in a culture of togetherness. Consider a company football team or cricket club that plays after hours or on weekends.
Encourage Cycling to Work
Granted, cycling can be a nightmare given the traffic conditions in most metropolitan cities, but if your office is situated in a reasonably quiet area, cycling to work may just be a practical option for many. Cycling offers excellent cardio for the body and can be a great outlet for stress and tension.
There isn’t a small enough budget that can stand in the way of organizational wellness. With the right mindset, you can steer your organization effectively up the health and wellness curve. All it takes is a little inspiration and a handful of ideas.
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