Physical Activity in the Workplace

Being physically active is important for both physical and mental health. Many jobs today involve sitting down in front of a computer so grabbing small amounts of precious exercise here and there during the working day will add up!

The main factors to consider are:

  • Providing information in the workplace on the benefits of exercise
  • Promoting of local facilities and events
  • Making it easy for staff to walk or cycle to work or to use public transport
  • Taking proper lunch breaks

What you can do right now

Promote exercise in the workplace

This is about encouraging staff to be more active in their personal lives as much as it is about taking exercise with colleagues at lunchtime.

There is a lot of encouraging information on the NHS Livewell website, which can be shared in the workplace:

There are several short workouts on these pages too, which could be fitted in around the working day.

Use Change4life’s ideas to encourage staff to move more.

Promote your local Park Run. It’s free and only 5 kilometres, family orientated and a lot of fun! When you complete 50 Park Runs, you get a red t-shirt you’ll be proud of!

Set up a Couch to 5k club

Use the NHS Livewell website to get you started.

Contact ACTIVE Tameside to find out how they can help you.

Send a team to a Workplace Corporate Games event organised by Greater Sport.

Provide information on local facilities and events

Active Tameside has pools and gym facilities dotted all over the Borough.

There is a lot of countryside in Tameside and walking is free. These Tameside Council’s Countryside service are worth exploring.

There will be a sport or a form of exercise out there for everyone, some of which are listed here.

Remind your staff about taking a proper lunch break.

Here is a quick summary of what the law says about taking a break.

Here are some of the benefits of taking a lunch break, brought to you by Health for Work, NHS.

Create your own Physical Activity Workplace Policy

The British Heart Foundation can help you.

Put a Workplace Travel Plan together

What’s one of those? A travel plan promotes physically active ways of getting to work and of travelling between sites during work time. It won’t always be practical to eliminate the car or the van but could you do more right now?

The good news is that there is a dedicated website for Greater Manchester, which can help you.

As part of your travel plan, you could offer a cycling mileage allowance. Also, you could support a bicycle purchasing scheme, such as the Bike2Work scheme.

Provide essential facilities

Do you have shower facilities, a safe place to store bikes? Check out this link from Transport for Greater Manchester to find out about help available to workplaces.