So if exercise is key to our good mood and feeling resilient, how do we ensure that we get enough of it? After all there are many scenarios in life that distract us from this valuable ‘me time’.
Getting more of a good thing - promoting exercise at work
We all like to be able to get more of a good thing, but do we think of exercise in that way? Probably not, in fact most of us would say that we don’t have the time - work and life pressures can be distracting and all consuming. But the reality is that we don’t perceive exercise as a priority in our daily lives or even perceive it as a part of our working lives, a contributing factor to our work success.
So, it’s a question of how we perceive exercise. Is it an extra element of living that we have to factor in, make more time for? Is it a luxury, something we would do if only we had more time to do it? Or is it essential, like food and water. The reality is that’s it’s more of the latter. So, how can you build activity into the working day and encourage activity within your employees’ lives?
A study has shown that if we reframe how we think about exercise and attribute it as part of our working lives we’re more likely to make it a part of our daily routine. So how can organisations help their employees achieve this?
- Gym discounts - Perhaps the simplest way to encourage exercise within your workforce, it provides the opportunity for employees to build exercise into their working day if located near work or on the way to work. The option to take up a coached fitness programme to measure and improve performance is available, providing additional motivation that may be needed to successfully navigate gym boredom. Plus there is the option of combing this with wearable technology to monitor and improve performance, which can also be linked with AXA PPP healthcare’s Proactive Health Gateway. Discounted gym membership and offers on other healthy living products can be accessed through Active+, an exclusive discount site available to AXA PPP healthcare members.
- On-site health centres – providing fitness equipment onsite for free is also an option, but this is dependent on your organisation’s size and capabilities. Like the gym option above it provides similar options around continued engagement.
- Exercise Groups – group activity is one of the best ways to promote and sustain exercise, after all knowing that others are depending on you will increase your likelihood of maintaining the activity. So whether it’s setting up a Five-a-side Football League or promoting trainer led options e.g. Nordic Walking, Running Group etc., this could provide the engagement your employees need.
- Workspace flexibility – by simply allowing your employees to have access to items that can help improve their fitness whilst at work can help benefit productivity. One example of this can be found in swapping out the office chair for a balance ball, which will help tone core muscles.
- Competitions – Even the least competitive of us like to compete, no more so than when it’s a group activity where we can work together as a team. So group loss weigh-ins, exercise groups and a Team Challenge, supported by AXA PPP healthcare’s Proactive Health Gateway, can create the motivation and drive to achieve healthier results.