As the weather begins to warm up and the beautiful summer months are upon us, there is no better time to get outside and exercise. The month of May is National Physical Fitness and Sports Month, which focuses on promoting physical fitness. Physical activity is essential to a healthy and well-balanced lifestyle, and therefore as employees begin retuning to the workplace after an extended period of time working from home, it is extremely important to emphasize that getting physical activity in during the workday should remain a top priority.
Although it can be argued that exercising at work takes time away from productive working hours, the number of benefits that come from physical activity clearly outweighs the lost time. Exercising at work has proven to lead to higher employee moral, improved levels of concentration, enhanced levels of creativity and learning, increased productivity, and lower stress levels.
The “sit less, move more” movement is a growing trend in the workplace and many employers have began to provide opportunities for physical activities at the workplace to their employees to promote this lifestyle with trending branded merchandise that can encourage movement and wellness.
Whether it be in a group or individually here are some ways to help promote physical activity in your workplace:
- Team events such as volleyball, frisbee or soccer matches are not only great ways to encourage physical activity, they can also support team bonding.
- Walking is one of the most effective and easiest ways to exercise. Providing pedometers and fitness trackers to employees is a good way to encourage employees to get up and walk around throughout the workday.
- Having a designated space for physical activity equipped with exercise equipment allows for employees to arrange physical activity into their own schedules at their own pace.
- The benefits of physical activity are never attained if you are dehydrated. No matter the levels of physical activity encouraging hydration is a way to ensure all employees are producing their best work.
- Busy employees may not want to take the time to stand-up and exercise, simple stretches from a desk can be just as effective. A simple page printed out and laminated for all employees to keep at their desks is a useful tool that shows you care about their well-being. Stress balls are a great option to both relieve stress and prevent pain in the hands, and massage balls do wonders to work out back kinks from bending over a computer all day.
- Lastly, headphones and speakers in the office space can encourage employees to get up and stretch, workout or meditate.
Employees have suffered a lot during the pandemic and there has definitely been an increased (and necessary) focus on their wellbeing. Employees must go a step beyond what was the norm 2-3 years ago, and show that they care about their employee in and out of the office.
See our Employee Engagement Lookbook for more ideas for branded merchandise that encourage employee well-being and a safe return to the office.