When you’re running a business unnecessary sick days cost money. That sounds mercenary, but for any business owner their people are an asset and, if you want your assets to pay dividends, they need to be at operating at their best. Caring about your staff’s wellbeing is good for them and good for the business.
There’s a lot being said about stress and mental health, but, surprisingly little about physical stress and the impact on individual’s bodies.
You can teach people how to lift items, how to use ladders, how to protect themselves in toxic environments and how to avoid injuries from the equipment they use – but what about the dangers of sitting at a desk? It doesn’t matter how ergonomically the work environment has been designed, human beings develop habits that can throw a swerve into your careful plan.
While you may recommend that people sit with both feet on the floor and their bottoms against the seat back, watch people slump and slide over time – without realising they’re doing it.
We’ve even seen people sitting with one leg folded under them – pins and needles are likely! There are some flexible people who think that sitting cross-legged in their office chair is a good thing – even though that’s not what the chair is designed for!
Here are our top tips for keeping your people moving and reducing aches and pains at bay:
Encourage a 5 minute break every hour – not to check their social media or phones, but to get up and walk to the coffee station or to get water. People who have moved usually resume a better posture when they return to their seat and staying hydrated is definitely a good thing.
Educate your team to recognise aches and pains as signs that their body is stressed. That means that action needs to take place sooner rather than later.
Teach them to learn how to use gentle stretching routines to relieve the tightness caused by sitting in one position for long periods and poor posture. These don’t require jumping about, most can be carried out while sitting at the desk. They’re the equivalent of ensuring your car has oil and water so it performs well and doesn’t let you down when you need it most.
What are the benefits?
- Your employees feel better and enjoy their work more.
- They remain energised throughout the day, without flagging mid-afternoon, so are more productive.
- Fewer days off with back pain, neck pain and referred pain in other areas.
- Less likelihood of workplace injury claims.
- Teaching them how to look after themselves better makes you a great employer – and ensures recruiting first class staff much easier!
If you’d like to know more about helping your employees to keep moving, Jas Bdesha of The Fascial Effect is an expert in teaching gentle stretches based on clinical techniques. Check out www.thefascialeffect.co.uk for more information or contact Jas directly on 07775 633798.
Brought to you by Pink Pig People & Culture