Prolonged physical inactivity is linked to a number of health problems including heart disease, colon cancer, diabetes, and mental health issues such as depression, and anxiety.

People who work in an office-based environment are more inactive in the day time due to the nature of their professions. It is also a common problem for office workers struggling to find the time or energy to work out after a long day of work.

How to encourage your employees to become more active

As a team leader/manager you should create opportunities for your team members to exercise. This makes it easier for them to participate in some form of physical activity when otherwise they would struggle to find the time. It also demonstrates that you take their health and wellbeing seriously.

Promoting physical activity in the workplace helps build a supportive and nurturing culture. It makes your workplace more inviting, and allows employees to perform at their best also.

Here are some practical techniques and ideas to implement at your workplace to help improve your company’s productivity and health culture.

1.    Promote physical fitness

Physical activity is paramount to good health and fitness. Encourage your staff to engage in light physical activity during their break. Provide workout tools and equipment if required, and you can even set up an on-site gym if you wish to go the extra mile.

Encourage your employees to participate in activities such as riding their bikes or walking to work if convenient.

Physical activity provides numerous advantages for both the body and mind. Hence, an increasing number of companies are promoting individual and team-based exercise as part of the workday. Improved ergonomics, higher productivity, and a more positive workplace culture are just a few of the advantages of increased physical activity in the workplace.

2.    Walking meetings

Try walking meetings instead of holding meetings in your office/conference halls.   The shift in the environment can reduce anxieties surrounding formal environments such as conference rooms. The hierarchical boundaries are essentially gone when CEOs and employees walk side by side. This provides an atmosphere wherein employees can freely voice their opinions.

Walking meetings boost productivity and enhance time management. Employees will have an improved mental performance, leading to better focus and increased mental clarity.

Walking meetings allow employees to incorporate physical activity into their job. Walking provides you energy and enhances memory. It also promotes employees’ sociability, and, most importantly, improves their mood.

3.    Provide healthy snacks

Nothing boosts employee morale like a few snacks here and there. Offering healthy snacks can help raise spirits and boost energy levels.

Encourage your employees to consume nutritious meals. Teach them about the advantages of healthy eating habits, and disadvantages of poor eating habits.

4.    Snooze-friendly policies

Some employees might not get enough sleep due to poor work/life balance. The correlation between good sleep and an employee’s well-being and productivity is undeniable.

A short 20-minute power nap if necessary can improve an employee’s alertness and performance.

Not everyone performs at their best when they sleep on the same timetable. Allow employees to choose the working hours that best suit their sleep routine. A one-hour time difference can have a significant impact on an employee’s productivity.

5.    Health insurance

It is in a company’s interest to invest in health insurance for their employees if they do not have it already. You may find that some of your team members are unable to pay for their medications, which may lead to poor health and delayed treatment for health issues.

6.    Provide safety equipment and clothing

If your staff operate in a hazardous workplace, make sure they have proper safety equipment and clothes, as well as training on how to utilise it. Employees shouldnt work in an environment which risks their health and safety, and adequate protocols need to be put in place to protect them.

In the sporting industry, uniforms serve as clothing which allows athletes to perform at their best and in some sports, to protect their safety. Uniforms must be high quality and able to withstand wear and tear.

For example, cricket uniforms help ensure cricket players are comfortable and protected during training and on the cricket pitch. Cricket uniforms must be breathable and flexible, which prevents players being distracted from their performance.

Similarly, when teams opt for custom soccer jerseys, they can present themselves on the field as professional and united as a team. Custom soccer jerseys contribute to the team members’ confidence and contribute to a strong team spirit.

Promoting a healthy workplace

A productive business depends on a healthy workforce. Employers who engage in daily physical activity will perform better, and feel better both physically and mentally. It also reduces stress levels caused by a busy work schedule, and boosts serotonin which is key to promoting happiness.

Employees who are healthy and happy perform better. Although business cannot ‘make’ employees happy, they can certainly foster an environment that facilitates a supportive and healthy workplace culture, which in turn contributes to happiness. By implementing wellness initiatives that enable employees to feel their best, a business might notice lower health expenditure and fewer sick days.