Only about 20% of American adults over the age of 18 get the recommended amount of physical activity. That’s a pretty startling statistic. According to the CDC, the average adult should get at least 2 hours and 30 minutes of activity each week. 20% is far from a passing grade; America is failing!
We all know that exercise has a number of health benefits, but we may not be aware of the very noticeable effects that exercise can have on the human body. 4+ years longer life expectancy, decreased resting heart rate, and improved sleep quality, are just a few of the results of exercise.
This infographic does a great job of depicting the effects exercise has on the body:
So how do we move more people from the sedentary left side of this picture to the healthier right side?
We believe it needs to start in the workplace.
The number one reason people don’t get exercise is because they don’t have, or at least think they don’t have enough time. The biggest time commitment for Americans is work. Americans on average spend 36% (8.6 hours) of their day, or 52% of their non-sleeping day, doing work or work related activities. Many view work as a health impediment, we see work as an opportunity for health promotion.
Work should be a place where health and wellness is promoted and employees receive the tools, education, and encouragement to live a healthy life. Many employers even have the financial ability to provide meaningful incentives to encourage employee health.
Let employees know that their health and wellness is your priority. Most corporate offices have a “clean your things out of the fridge by Friday or they will be thrown out” sign in the employee common space. This type of poster works because it’s a constant reminder to employees.
Why not take a similar approach with wellness? A poster or sign in the employee common space is an easy and very inexpensive way to remind employees that health and wellness is a priority.
You can start by printing out the infographic above.