Fitness and Wellness Programs at the Corporate Doors

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With extended working hours and desk snacks paving out their way more into people's lifestyle, the need for exercise and right food has never been more important than now. Consider some facts:

The recent annual ‘Attitudes in The American Workplace VI' Gallup poll, found that:

  1. 80% of workers feel stressed on the job.
  2. 14% of the workers felt the urge to strike another co-worker but didn't.
  3. 25% felt like screaming or shouting due to job stress.
  4. 9% of them witnessed an assault or a violent act at workplace and
  5. 18% experienced a threat, either verbally or in another way at their workplace.

A 2007 study conducted by the John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health states that

  1. Due to insufficient nutrition, workers do not remain active in their workplace.
  2. The obesity factor among the adult Americans would be on rise at a considerable rate in the coming 8 years.
  3. Almost 75% of the Americans would be overweight by the year 2015.

Apart from this, the Center for Disease Control has noticed that the absenteeism by obese employees in comparison to other workers, has burdened the employers to an estimate of $4 billion.

With facts as these, it is imperative to open the corporate gates to fitness and wellness programs, which aim at providing fitness solutions along with nutritional food to employees. This will in turn not only save the employers from losing money due to absenteeism but will even improve the productivity of the employees.

Companies like Johnsons and Johnson, DuPont, Northern Gas Company, etc. did not only observe the dwindling percentage of absenteeism but also encountered fewer cases of medical reimbursements and claims.

A few, yet creative ways introduced by companies to aid their employees in getting involved with fitness programs can go a long way in ensuring better health of employees –

  1. Encouraging them to take the stairs instead of the elevator.
  2. Using some time of their lunch break for a noon walk.
  3. Introducing healthy snacks to munch on in the company.
  4. Implementing strategy for restricting the use of coffee to just 2 cups in a day.
  5. Encouraging sports get together or treks during the weekends.
  6. Providing discounted memberships to gyms and fitness centers.
  7. Installing a pop up at every computer, reminding them to stretch and do a handful of breathing and eye exercises while remaining seated at their table.
  8. Getting corporate fitness trainers to assess the health of their employees periodically and providing fitness solutions.
  9. Encouraging active participation through sports competitions, inter- company tournaments, etc.
  10. Increasing and retaining their interest by comparing the health and absenteeism parameters of two or more teams and keeping a score card.

Such, few and quick ideas can work effectively. Introducing rewards and appreciation certificates for employees showing a good record of health and presence at the workplace can work miraculously and boost others to participate as well.

Employees today spend their maximum time at their workplace. It is not just the responsibility of an employer to take care of the wellness of his employees, but even boost him further to take care of himself. What better way can he, be introduced to this concept other than through corporate fitness and wellness programs at his own workplace.

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Paul Smith is a certified personal trainer and works at an uptown New York gym. He has a Bachelor's degree in physical education. He is a sports enthusiast and loves to play baseball. He is a health freak and a recent convert to vegetarianism. He loves sharing his knowledge about fitness products and fitness solutions. When he is not training his patrons, you'll find Paul playing video games with his son.

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Fitness and Wellness Programs at the Corporate Doors

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This article was published on 2011/01/07