FTSE-100 Companies Show Concerns Over Staff Fitness 

More of the UK’s leading blue-chip companies are becoming concerned about their employees leading sedentary lifestyles.

by Francesca Merrick Saturday, May 10, 2014
Around 80% of the adult UK population get little or no exercise and office work especially undermines our efforts to get active and healthy. From unhealthy snacks offered by the office vending machines to calorific corporate lunches and then sitting at a desk for over 8 hours, the lifestyle of most office workers involves little activity and nothing much in the way of healthy eating. Even for those who are active, sitting for long periods naturally increases the risk of heart disease and diabetes.

But some of the largest UK companies are now recognising the need to invest in the wellbeing of their staff. Evidence shows that a structured investment in employees’ mental and physical health pays off. Many of the leading FTSE-100 companies now offer wellbeing packages and incentives as part of their employee benefits package. This ranges from on-site fitness classes and personal training to provision of in-house gyms and leisure facilities. By introducing ways to increase staff activity, companies are benefiting from a reduction in staff absenteeism and improvements in productivity and profitability.

One such company that provide on-site personal training and fitness classes is MotivatePT. A spokesperson from the company comments, “We’ve turned into a nation of square-eyed, desk-bound workers where our backs are becoming arched, and our waistlines growing as we live a lifestyle totally alien to the way our ancestors lived.”

GlaxoSmithKline have enrolled hundreds of their staff onto health and wellbeing workshops where employees are educated about correct nutrition and provided with a personalised plan that they can follow in the company gym. Simon Moran from NHS Trust advises that workers take breaks away from the computer and walk around to stretch their legs. Some companies have taken this to the next level by installing treadmill desks for staff in busy call centres. However, at around £3500 each, these may yet to catch on.

Traditionally wellbeing and fitness programs were seen as nothing more than a nice perk but now many leading companies see them as essential to their bottom line as they try to keep workers alert, active and productive. Figures from the Health and Safety Executive shows that the cost to employers of work-related absenteeism and ill-health costs companies in Britain a staggering £7.6 billion a year.

MotivatePT, a personal training company have responded by providing a corporate 6-week fitness program which helps companies to overhaul the wellbeing of staff with diet plans and workplace group personal training. The exercise classes incorporate cardio exercise, strength training, core stability and postural assessments. This is conducted in conjunction with food and activity diaries that help employees to develop healthier lifestyle patterns. For more information visit http://www.motivatept.co.uk/corporate-fitness/corporate-personal-training/

A spokesperson for MotivatePT comments, “Developing healthier habits requires a lifestyle shift and these behaviours need to be reinforced over a 6 week program in order for them to become habits. With structured lifestyle change workers can see significant improvement in their health and wellbeing and develop the knowledge and skills to maintain these healthier habits into the long term.”

0    submitted by Francesca Merrick
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