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The annual “work out at work” day which in 2013 took place on 12th June encourages employers and employees to find ways to avoid work-related health problems and to get more exercise into daily routines. Organised by the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy (CSP) the day saw hundreds of events taking place across the country.
Whilst some may see the day as a fun chance to try out a bit of desk-exercising, to have a go at yoga or to take a walk at lunch around the local area, the day does have its serious side. Millions of days are lost every year due to work-related injury and illness. Employers can make a difference simply by encouraging employees to take time out and exercise and by making sure that chairs and desks are properly positioned. And far from costing the business money, encouraging well being can help to improve profitability. A report by The Work Foundation estimated that businesses gained £3 of benefits for every £1 spent on wellbeing initiatives.
But the benefits don’t just stop at the effect on physical health. Showing employees that the business cares about their welfare can also help to boost employee engagement. This in turn has a measurable effect on profitability and reduces wastage and staff turnover levels. Taking time out of the working day to stretch or exercise may not be directly contributing to the business output but in the long term it will have a far greater effect on engagement and profitability than expecting employees to stay in place for hours on end.