Health at Work

This past week I came across a fantastic magazine in the Financial Times entitled "Health at Work" and what caught my attention straight away was the stats and information which were both frightening and inspiring.

For me personally, it is always motivating to read how we are progressing with Corporate Wellness Initiatives in Ireland and the UK, yet we still seem to have plenty of room for improvement. 

The biggest stats that jumped out at me were from Christa Sedlatscek, Director of the European Agency for Safety and Health at Work centred on the subject of Mental Health, Stress and Musculoskeletal Disorders in the workplace.

Here are some of the findings:

37% of Workers in the EU report an increase in stress levels due to unreasonable work deadlines.

62% report suffering from an overuse injury in back, neck, arm or hand muscles due to repetitive sitting and working posture which accounted for 34% of working days lost.

Depression and anxiety reported for 45% of working days lost.

We now spend roughly a third of our life at work and provisions must be implemented to ensure we begin to see a much needed reduction in these numbers.

Taking a lead on this is the current government in Singapore, who are now acting in such fashion. Between 2004 and 2010 Singapore saw a rapid rise in people suffering from diabetes, climbing from 7% to 11% of the total population. In order to reduce these numbers, in 2013 the government decided to provide office workers with free gym classes across the busy populated corporate areas. Now the country reports a massive growth from 200 subscribers to currently now having 8000 subscribers taking part in classes.

Some of the other articles contained within the magazine highlighted the importance of Corporations training as a group in classes such as the aforementioned and onsite as opposed to just subsidising a gym membership.

Taking this approach tends to lead to improvements in group cohesion and company culture. We at FitVision certainly have experienced this with some of our very own clients, Primark. Staff for example take part in as many as 20 classes per week on site and from feedback received from surveys with employees it helps to break down departmental barriers and add to the positive atmosphere with more employees interacting on a weekly basis.

The final statistic that jumped out at me was the number of lost working days, unfortunately down to poor nutrition choices by employees, mainly to time factors and canteen choices with as many as 4 days per year lost on average.

To combat this for our own corporate clients, we have designed an educational nutritional program built around our bespoke FitVision App to coach organisations and employees into build and maintaining healthy eating habits. 

The aim is to eliminate this issue providing information such as “how to understand and read food labels”, we believe helping the individual achieve Optimum Energy Levels and Body Composition leads to a happier, healthier and ultimately more productive staff member. The research in the Financial Times magazine “Health at Work” reaffirms that view and stresses the importance of long term Corporate Wellness planning and programs. 

If you would like to find out more about how FitVision has helped organisations just like yours, see our video below.