May is National Walking Month which is an annual celebration of walking to support physical and emotional wellbeing. Walking is said to be an effective way to improve health and prevent certain health conditions including certain cancers, depression, heart disease and Type 2 diabetes.
The challenge is to build in 20 minutes of walking to your daily regime. Employees could do this in their lunch break, or you could be creative and walk whilst catching up with an employee on their wellbeing or work item. Actively encouraging your employees to engage in this initiative will have personal benefits for them and business benefits for you. Walking, or any other exercise gives a break from the working day, stimulates your brain, can improve focus, and reduces stress levels. This in turn, can reduce sickness levels and improve retention.
Encouraging a healthy workplace outside of this initiative is also a good idea as it builds morale amongst your team. You don’t need a gym to help employees be active and enjoy the benefits of exercise and fitness. You could encourage employees to take the stairs, complete one-minute spurts of activity or do light exercises at your desk. You could turn the walking month into a challenge with a prize at the end.
There are other initiatives such as cycle to work schemes which you could consider operating to improve employee wellbeing and health. It can act as an employee benefit whilst saving you national insurance contributions.
If you would like further information or help with introducing these initiatives into the workplace or employee engagement generally, please do get in contact with us here.
National Walking Month (wsh.nhs.uk)