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Promoting Fitness within Organizations. Programs for Healthy Employees and Healthy Businesses. A Call to Action.

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promoting fitness within organizations

Promoting Fitnesswithin Organizations

Programs for Healthy Employees and Healthy Businesses


A Call to Action

We are under exercised as a nation. We look instead of play. We ride instead of walk. Our existence deprives us of the minimum of physical activity essential for healthy living.

John F. Kennedy

December 5, 1961

promoting fitness at work
Promoting Fitness at Work
  • The goal of worksite wellness program is to reduce the number of lifestyle diseases adding to employer and employee healthcare costs.
    • Management viewpoint
promoting fitness at work1
Promoting Fitness at Work
  • The goal of worksite wellness program is to encourage employees to adopt healthy lifestyle behaviors to achieve and/or maintain a high quality of life.
    • Health Professional viewpoint
promoting fitness at work2
Promoting Fitness at Work
  • The goal of worksite wellness program is for my employer to help me learn healthy habits and new activities that can help me and my family live a healthier life.
    • Employee viewpoint
promoting fitness at work3
Promoting Fitness at Work

Happy, healthy and having a great time!

promoting fitness at work4
Promoting Fitness at Work
  • The goal of worksite wellness program is to make me humiliate myself by dancing in the break room, get sweaty in my work clothes, discuss my weight with my coworkers, make me lie about what I really ate for dinner last night and ultimately to remove all of the “good stuff” from of the vending machines.
    • Viewpoint of many – you know who you are.
promoting fitness at work5
Promoting Fitness at Work

You took the Snickers out of the vending machine?!

Welcome to Wellness!

Go eat an apple.

what are the basic needs
What are the Basic Needs?

I’m an IT technician. How did I get put in charge of wellness?

  • A designated staff person or team
  • Program appropriate resources
  • Financial resources
  • Patience and enthusiasm
  • Commitment from management
programs to choose
Programs to Choose
  • Two main types of fitness promotion programs for the workplace:
    • Participation Only
    • Results Based
participation based programs
Participation Based Programs
  • No goals or results are required
  • Incentives offered to participate
  • In some cases, there are disincentives for not participating
results based programs
Results Based Programs
  • Incentives offered for attaining a specific goal
  • An outcome must be achieved, this makes RBP’s more heavily regulated.
employee data
Employee Data
  • The Health Risk Assessment
    • A health risk assessment is an assessment tool or questionnaire designed to identify health risks and outline information to assist people in making healthful changes that impact their health and prevent chronic disease.
    • Popular tool for both participation and results based programs.
health risk assessments
Health Risk Assessments
  • HRA’s gather valuable information about employees: data must be held in strict confidence.
  • Employers must also ensure that HRA’s are compliant with all regulations.
legal notes
Legal Notes
  • Laws governing wellness programs:
    • Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)
    • Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)
    • California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA)
    • Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA)
conduct a worksite wellness or health fitness audit
Conduct a Worksite Wellness or Health & Fitness Audit
  • What are we doing well?
    • Policies/Handbooks
    • Health insurance
    • Newsletters
  • What can we do better?
    • Vending machines
    • Flexible schedules
    • Healthier celebrations
    • What in our work environment supports health
survey employees
Survey Employees
  • What do employee’s want?
    • Onsite fitness classes?
    • Subsidized gym memberships?
    • Lunchtime classes on nutrition and healthy lifestyle?
    • Pleasant and inviting break areas?
    • Company softball team?
    • What do they perceived as barriers?
review the literature
Review the Literature

A meta-review of 42 published studies of worksite health promotion programs shows:

  • Average 28% reduction in sick leave absenteeism.
  • Average 26% reduction in health costs.
  • Average 30% reduction in workers' compensation and disability claims costs.
  • Average $5.93-to-$1 savings-to-cost ratio.

Partnership for Prevention

grow an advisory board
Grow An Advisory Board
  • Get administration involved.
  • Recruit managers and staff members who are motivated and will serve as role models.
  • Evaluate employee survey responses and brainstorm.
  • Determine goals.
  • Assign tasks.
assess your resources
Assess Your Resources
  • Discuss what can your employees contribute?
  • What local resources may meet your needs?
  • Do any online or social media programs meet your needs?
choose your path
Choose Your Path
  • Champion your program
  • Be open to input
  • Be prepared to roll with the punches
  • There is no wrong way
assess your efforts
Assess Your Efforts
  • Give your employees real, personal data.
  • Give your management usable data.
  • Celebrate positive trends
  • Use data to plan next steps
fitness promotion contributes to healthy communities
Fitness Promotion Contributes to Healthy Communities
  • Healthy worksites contribute to a healthy community culture.
  • Healthy lessons learned at work get shared at home.
  • One or both parents work = opportunity
choose your program
Choose Your Program

“Pick battles big enough to matter, small enough to win.”

~Jonathan Kozol, On Being a Teacher