In the world we are living in today, with jobs not involving a lot of activities and the average corporate employee sitting behind a desk for hours on end, it has become necessary to shake things up in the office in order to maintain the health and fitness level of the workforce. This is when companies must realize that employing their staff was the easy part.
With time, it becomes clear to you that, despite a few employees, most of them are not that invested in your business as you are. The fact that some of your employees are still invested means that with a little effort the remainder of the herds’ interest and productivity can be redeemed. This can be done by engaging your employees in fitness programs.
Benefits of fitness programs in the workplace
Fitness programs are a great motivator and below are reasons why we recommend you incorporate fitness in the workplace:
- Team building
This is a major factor in increasing employee interest and productivity of your business. Fitness experts believe that teamwork boosts employee morale making them more energetic during training and highly motivated to meet their goals.
Nowadays a well-equipped fitness center is probably the only place employees find time to interact during their downtime. Hence having a particular gym section in the company can be beneficial. Interacting gives them an opportunity to bond and exchange ideas on projects.
Indulging your employees in group fitness activities, whether departmental or interdepartmental can contribute to improving internal relationships which are critical for team building.
- Employee retention
Companies incorporating on-site gyms have become an upcoming trend in current times. Gyms have become part of the employees’ health and fitness benefit plan. Staff members consider this a great advantage to their working environment and managers are utilizing this as a retention tool.
If your employees regularly and positively participate in fitness activities and are improving in performance, it would be harder for them to leave the job.
- Better sleep
There is a direct correlation between sleep and having a happy, healthy and prolific life. Research has shown that stress, sickness, and depression are some side effects of sleep deprivation. Studies have also proved that exercising adequately can help you steady sleeping patterns1. Enough exercise and sleep motivates, increases interest and improves the productivity of your staff.
- Motivated employees
Regular exercising can keep your staff more energized, happy and motivated while they are at work. Employees who exercise have more energy which improves brain function. Since exercise stabilizes sleeping patterns it therefore also improves your employees’ overall performance. Some studies have found a link between productivity and happiness such that, happier people are more productive by 12%.
- Increase brain power
A study conducted by Aviva on companies investing in health care programs shows that businesses can increase employee attendance by 89%. It also indicated that performance can also be improved2.
The research shows exercising can help the body produce certain hormones that are necessary for the brain to execute specific functions such as memory, problem-solving and multi-tasking.
- Cut health care costs
In countries such as the US, providing healthcare is commonly included in employment contracts. It is believed that if employees exercise frequently they save saves major expenses incurred by the company.
When your company offers employees health and fitness benefits such as an in-house gym or a gym membership plan, costs on medical provisions can significantly be reduced. Some companies offer several health benefit plans just to ensure that their employees stay healthy.
- Reduces stress
When employees work in highly demanding business environments they often tend to be more stressed and depressed. This has been proved to be amongst the leading causes of employee absenteeism3. Recent studies conducted in the UK show that most people mainly go to the gym to relieve stress, lose weight and get fit.
This proves that working long hours throughout the week can cause stress. Exercising regularly improves your heart rate and blood flow while relieving stress. It also stimulates the production of the hormone norepinephrine which aids in improving your mood and brain function.
- Job satisfaction
When your employees are performing better at work, healthy and fit and, are less stressed they tend to have a higher appreciation for the work they are doing. Job satisfaction can be influenced by many variables but is safe to assume that a calm, healthy and, happy workforce is more energized, productive and more satisfied with their work.
- Reduces absenteeism
This is the main reason why companies recommend fitness activities in the workplace. By introducing your staff to a health and fitness program you can cut down on costs. This can also ensure that you have a healthier workforce. Exercising regularly keeps your employees healthy and less susceptible to common illnesses. Therefore, they can fully spend the required hours at work hence saving you money.
Ketogenic diet and exercise in the workplace
Current trends that have seen employees spend more time being stationary at work and at home greatly contribute to health conditions such as being overweight. Being overweight subsequently leads to the development of more complications such as high blood pressure and diabetes. These conditions end up being costly to your company when it comes to providing medical cover for your staff. Recommending a low carbohydrate diet, ketogenic diet, separately or to go along with exercising can positively impact your staff.
A Ketogenic diet is a low carbohydrate diet which helps the body burn excess fat instead of sugars to produce energy4.
This diet can be beneficial to staff members who do not regularly participate in fitness activities. It has been proved to help with weight loss, health and it improves general performance in individuals5.
Exercises that accompany a ketogenic diet include:
- Aerobic exercises
- Anaerobic exercises
- Flexibility exercises
- Stability exercises
Employee health and retention at the workplace has become a wanting issue that the World Health Organization advocates adults between the ages of 18 to 65 should get 20 minutes of intense exercise at least 3 days of the week or 30 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise 5 days a week6.