Movement In The Workplace
For an Employee
Many of us spend hours a day sitting. One in four adults sit more than 8 hours a day, and half of Americans do not meet weekly physical activity guidelines, according to CDC. Many jobs are sedentary so it can be challenging to sit less and move more. According to the Mayo Clinic, research has shown that those who sit for more than eight hours a day with no physical activity have an increased risk of dying similar to that from obesity and smoking.
What can you do? Incorporate some movement into your workday, just like a coffee break or a scheduled meeting.
Here are a few ideas for you and your coworkers:
- Take a walk on your lunch break.
- Take the stairs instead of the elevator.
- Park further away from your office building.
- Set a timer on your phone that reminds you to get up and move around twice an hour.
- Practice a few desk-sitting exercises such as seated marches, seated leg extensions, seated reverse shoulder flies or seated torso twists. Print out this guide and hang up in your cubicle as a resource.
- Walk over to your coworker’s workspace to have a conversation instead of sending an email.
- Walk to a bathroom that is further away.
- Schedule a few movement breaks on your work calendar during the day.
To track your movement, visit Chesco Moves with MoveSpring.
For an Employer
You can be the one to encourage more movement in your workplace. Encouraging staff to move more and making it feasible for them to do so is better for company morale, and better individual health may lead to less sick time taken.
Here are ideas on how you can support your employees in moving more:
- Decorate your stairwell to entice more people to use it.
- Plan morale-boosting events that promote movement, such as an office softball game, relay race, or walk-a-thon for a local charity.
- Work with area gyms and fitness clubs to establish employee discounts on memberships.
- Encourage employees to schedule short movement breaks throughout their workday and do not require them to use PTO time for these breaks.
- Hold walking meetings.
- Set up a dedicated workout space or gym on-site at your office.
- Create fun challenges that promote movement! You can invite employees to join our MoveSpring platform and compete against each other in seasonal challenges.
- Inspire a more active commute by installing bicycle racks, providing changing facilities and lockers for staff, and offering a Cycle to Work scheme or cycle mileage allowance.
- Incentivize healthy habits by offerings additional benefits or a health insurance discount when an employee meets certain health goals.
- Make standing desks available to staff to reduce their sitting time.
- American Heart Association: 10 Minute Home Workout
- American Heart Association: How to be More Active During the Work Day
- CDC: Getting Started with Physical Activity
- CDC: Physical Activity Breaks for the Workplace
- Deskercise! Inclusive Ways to Get Moving While You Work
- LinkedIn: How to promote physical activity at work
- Move Your Way
- NASA: Desk Fit
Before starting any physical activity program, be sure to talk with your doctor about the types and amounts of physical activity that are right for you.