New study shows Aussies sacrifice their health over work
Australians are apparently so hardworking that more than half of us are sacrificing our health in favour for our careers.
According to research commissioned by the Cerebral Palsy Alliance from a survey of more than 2000 people, 54 per cent of full time workers have stated that everything from a lack of change rooms or showers in the workplace to colleague perceptions play a part in their avoidance of regular exercise.
Of the same group, nearly half stated they would be more inclined to participate in regular workplace health activities if their boss and colleagues were more supportive and an even larger chunk of the respondents – 80 per cent to be exact – listed health as being quite or very important to their performance at work.
So in other words – we all want to exercise more, but no-one can be bothered.
But making the necessary changes to leading a more active, ergo healthy, lifestyle isn’t necessarily that hard. Lack of showers or colleagues be damned.
The World Health Organisation have previously recommended that people walk 10,000 steps per day as a way of getting the minimal amount of exercise for a healthy balanced life. (Mind you, this study was not aimed at weight loss – if you want that, you may want to add another 15,000 steps to that target.)
RELATED: One-hour walk a day is all you need
Switching out either the whole or part of the trip to and from work in favour of walking adds up quicker than you think. And getting up from your desk and taking an actual lunchbreak can also help give your brain a good refresher while getting the blood pumping through the body.
But if the study is true, and the biggest barriers are our workplace and the people we sit with, how do we change that short of changing our jobs?
According to 38 per cent of people who took part in the study, a subsidised gym membership would be a start. This would not only encourage workers to get more active but would also help foster a better group mindset towards fitness and collaborative workouts. Other ideas that were floated were internal gyms, yoga classes and even charity exercise drives.
Jo Cameron, CEO of the Goodman Foundation – the charitable arm of one of the largest industrial property groups – says employee wellbeing needs to be a top priority for Australian businesses.
“Productivity, efficiency, collaboration and engagement are all enhanced in a healthy, happy workplace and connecting to activities with cause is a great way to drive participation,” Ms Cameron said.
The survey was conducted as part of the annual Steptember fundraising campaign, aimed at helping activate workplaces nationwide while raising money to support those living with cerebral palsy.
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