Get Moving: Move Around During the Day
The idea of staying stationary at work is a relic of the past. Studies have shown that just taking periodic breaks, even for five minutes every hour, can dramatically improve day-to-day productivity and reduce overall stress. For those of us who don’t have the luxury of taking a leisurely stroll during our lunch breaks, here are a few tips on how to move around during the day to boost your health, productivity and wellbeing.
Take the Stairs Whenever Possible
Whenever possible, take the stairs instead of the elevator. During the workday, it is easy to get stuck in a rut of sitting at one’s desk, so taking the stairs is a great way to power up energy and get a little exercise while still keeping it work appropriate. Taking the stairs instead of the elevator also allows for a brief mental break. Fluctuating between walking up the stairs and sitting at your desk can be a refreshing change!
Get Up and Stretch Every Hour
Working the same position for hours can lead to muscle imbalances and bad posture. To counteract this, practice taking a break to stretch out your muscles every hour or two. You don’t need to head to a yoga studio to do this; standing and stretching your body, arms and legs or connecting with a series of cat-cows a few times throughout the day can do wonders. Take it a step further and practice some simple yoga postures at your desk; a few rounds of seated twists, side bends and chair squats can get the heart rate up and the Creative Juice flowing.
Take Regular Walks Around the Office
Scheduling regular quick walks around the office can be a great way to keep productivity up and stress levels down. Spending time away from your desk interacting with other employees and getting some extra Vitamin D from office windows can help your mental and physical health. Aim for at least 5 to 10 minute walk and you can combine it with stretching as well.
Make Meetings a Moving Session
Rather than sitting at a desk for a meeting, engage in a short “meeting walk” with your team. Not only does it get your blood flowing, but it can actually be beneficial for productivity as it can help break up monotony and provide a change in scenery.
Maintaining a sedentary position for long periods of time can be hard on your body. Deskercises are simple exercises that can be done at the office and range from leg lifts and chair squats, to shoulder rolls and shoulder presses. These movements can help to reduce discomfort from sitting for hours on end, by strengthening key muscle groups and increasing flexibility.
Movement During Brainstorming Sessions
These days, many companies practice brainstorming sessions to come up with ideas, solve problems, and make decisions. Rather than having these meetings seated, why not shake things up by doing a more active brainstorming session? Taking a walk around the office, outside or doing a few minutes of yoga to shake off any mental blocks can be beneficial for productivity and creativity.
Combat Muscle Stress With Foam Rolling
Foam rolling is an easy and effective way to combat muscle stress at work. Not only is it great for improving blood flow and flexibility in the body, but it can also alleviate a lot of chronic pain and knots that come from sitting in the same position for hours each day. All you need is a foam roller and a few minutes of your time!
Organize Activity-Based Events
To make sure that employees stay active, organize events that promote movement. This could mean having a corporate yoga class or running a charity 5k together. Not only is it great for team bonding, but it also encourages employees to move around throughout the day and stay active.
Maintain a Healthy Work Environment
On a fundamental level, employers can do a lot to maintain a healthy work environment and culture. This could mean providing ergonomic office furniture and/or standing desks, or including healthy snacks in the kitchen. Any small changes that make it easier for employees to be active and healthy throughout the day can go a long way.
Overall, staying active during the day at work is an important investment for both productivity and wellness. Making it a little easier for employees to move around will have a positive impact on their wellbeing and motivation. Taking quick breaks to stretch, opt for stairs over elevators, and the occasional deskercises are good, small steps anyone can take to promote activity in the workplace.