Health Works Award

Health Works Awards

Physical Activity

Physically active employees take 27% fewer days of sick leave.

Physically active employees take 27% fewer days of sick leave, which equates to over 2 days improved attendance and a saving of £135 per employee (Physical Activity Task Force, 2003).

Physical activity helps people to manage stress, back pain, weight and medical conditions – left unmanaged – these may lead to absenteeism and loss of production.

Employees engaged in physical activity initiatives have also reported greater enjoyment of their work, increased concentration and mental alertness and improved cooperation and rapport with colleagues (Shephard 1997, 2002).

There are many ways to encourage your workforce to get their daily dose of activity, even if their job involves sitting down all day.  Thirty minutes is all it takes and there are lots of different ways to be active.

If you need help developing a physical activity statement or policy, then you can view this document here.

Increase Awareness by providing information:

  • Contact local sports and leisure facilities and ask them to provide information to give out to your employees.  You may be able to negotiate a corporate discount too.
  • Are their any local clubs, classes or activities taking place in your area that would like to advertise their information in your workplace?  They may also be able to do a few demo classes within the workplace during lunchtimes to engage the workforce!
  • Distribute leaflets and information by email or with payslips. 
  • Fundraising activities in the workplace can be fun and also rewarding. Being committed to an event where raising money also helps with your physical fitness and health status. Sign up today for a fund raising challenge. 
  • Desktop exercise while you work.
  • Circulate information on employees clubs within your organisation through your newsletters and intranet so that new recruits can join. 
  • Inttroducing excercise brings colour back in your cheeks and also doesn't cost a thing.
  • Top tips to help you stay active - distribute these on notice boards and newsletters or provide a link on internal websites.
  • health check tool.
  • Promotional displays that highlight the key messages and provide information and leaflets.  You can use some of the information here in those displays.
  • Health improving, top tips on how to eat healthier and improve your diet.

Workplace Activity Ideas:

  • Company leagues where teams of employees or individuals can play against each other in activities such as football, squash or rounders.
  • Lunchtime activities such as walks around your business park or walk to the local shops for lunch.  Contact us and we will direct you to local partners who will help you set up a lunchtime walking group with safe routes
  • Participation in local or national events such as Sport Relief  and you could raise money for charity at the same time!
  • Would your employees be interested in lunchtime classes on-site run by health professionals?  You could contact local professionals to deliver aerobics or yoga.
  • Themed days such as cycle to work week or walk to work day.  You can contact the Health Works team for more information on local professionals who can supply a range of bikes for everyone to use.
  • You can support safer cycling by arranging bike maintenance courses at your workplace in lunch hours.  Contact your Health Works Assessor for more information on these.
  • Pay a mileage rate of at least 20p per cycled mile.
  • Set up a cycle to work scheme and contact your local authority to develop and plan a safer cycle and pedestrian route to work together with access to public transport;    
  • Workplace challenges – posters displayed near the lift to encourage use of the stairs, waste bins reduced to one per office area to encourage people to get up and walk around, photocopiers placed at the far end of the building to increase the number of steps taken.
  • Encourage walking and cycling to external meetings – look at the possibility of pool bike.
  • You could even start or enter your own Workplace teams into local matches and leagues. View some ideas to keep fit for football here -  Check out these top tips.
  • Plan your activities by using our Physical Activity template to help you and your Health Works Team focus your ideas. (PDF) 

REMEMBER…if you have any questions about what you should do or how you evidence your activities, please contact your Health Works Assessor using the details on the contact us page.