Employees shy away from exercise. Blush-proof ideas for corporate sporting events

October 22nd, 2010

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One in three UK workers is too shy to get sweaty in front of colleagues according to a British Heart Foundation (BHF) survey. The BHF study, which looked at UK workplace exercise trends, revealed that over half of UK workers are desk-bound for most of the day with nearly 50 per cent eating lunch at their desks. According to the findings 81 per cent of UK workers fail to get the recommended amount of exercise a week.

With the UK government predicting that 36 per cent of men and 28 per cent of woman will be obese in five years, what’s the answer? The BHF survey suggests the workplace is the perfect location for keeping fit and active, with half of UK workers admitting they won’t travel more than 10 minutes from work or home to exercise.

Lisa Purcell, project manager for the BHF’s Health at Work Programme says: ‘Embarrassment shouldn’t prevent people from being healthy at work. You don’t have to don a lycra leotard to get fit and healthy, the payoffs from even simple changes like taking a walk at lunchtime are too great to ignore. Getting healthy during the working day means you are less stressed and better motivated.

‘Bosses need to understand there’s a massive return on investment here. Simple measures to improve the health of your workforce – like swapping tea-break biscuits for fruit, or getting the team together for a lunchtime kickaround in the car park – can improve productivity, reduce staff turnover, and mean fewer sick days.

‘We are calling on businesses to take their employee’s health and wellbeing seriously, and start reaping the rewards,’ she said.

The BHF Health at Work programme, sponsored by Legal & General, has already signed up more than 800 organisations. Employees from bin men to bank tellers are finding there’s no need for blushes when they’re all in it together.

Apprentice star

Claire Young has lost four stone since appearing on the BBC’s Apprentice. She says: ‘All companies need a fit workforce – a healthy mind is a productive mind. The more employers look after their staff, the better they will perform. It’s a great way to ensure a happier and healthier workplace.’

Five corporate sporting events for shy employees

1. Paintball. No need to worry about getting sweaty in front of work colleagues when playing paintball: the protective clothing will hide your blushes and save your face. If you want to fire your work colleagues into action, click here.

2. Karting. Karting is another sport where the more retiring office worker can hide behind the crash helmet and the overalls. Put your foot down and get your colleagues away from the desk for some exercise. It may be sitting down, but the blood is pumping. More and more offices have having their Christmas parties on the track. Check it out here

3. Clay pigeon shooting. Here’s a sport that’s more swanky than sweaty. Green wellies, tweeds, picnics, oh and there’s also the shooting. Clay pigeon shooting is the perfect mix of social and sporting for lots of work colleagues. Take a shot at it, click here.

4. Segway. Segway racing is a popular corporate event that doesn’t have to embarrass anyone. With the average British office worker spending so much time chained to their desks, a whirl in the countryside maybe just be what the doctor ordered. To take a ride, click here.

5. High Ropes. Tree walking is a corporate sporting event that is rising in popularity. And just like Tarzan and Jane, it is possible to still look cool, although the loin cloth is optional. To book, click here.

One Comment

  1. Jono says:

    Wicked! Nice one.

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