Industrial Safety and Fitness
Wouldn’t it be great if there was an easy way to make safety at worker easier?
One simple fix that could reduce the number of accidents, the extent of injuries, and/or the likelihood of illness?
While there is no magic button or team-meeting that can ensure it, there is something you can do.
With effort, your co-workers, employees, teammates and even yourself can improve your chances of a healthier workforce.
How Healthy Living Can Help
Physical labor, such as construction work, takes a toll on the body.
However, a healthy, active lifestyle can reduce the wear and tear of construction work on the body in a variety of ways, including:
- Reducing the effect that poor weather can have on your body
- Lessening the likelihood of minor sprains, strains or muscle pulls
- The lingering effects of unavoidable minor injuries are reduced, as a healthy body will heal faster.
- Lowered chance of passing along common illnesses, such as a cold or the flu, due to an improved immune system.
- Improved alertness, which can be crucial to reaction times during work-site emergencies or potential threats.
On top of these safety concerns, fit employees also generally bring a better mental attitude to the job site.
This can include lower stress levels, higher levels of self-confidence, and the ability to set and achieve goals on a regular basis.
All of this together leads to a positive effect on your bottom line.
Ways to Get and Stay in Shape
There are plenty of ways that you and your team can stay in shape.
Some are admittedly easier than others, and some may be difficult to achieve, depending on the current shape you’re in. However, even a movement in the right direction is better than stagnation.
However, even a movement in the right direction is better than stagnation.
Follow these tips to get started (or keep going) on the track to healthier living:
- Exercise regularly (this means above the physical effort put in on the job site)
- Eat a healthy and well-balanced diet rich in protein, fruits, vegetables and whole grains.
- Get a sufficient nights’ sleep regularly
- Limit indulging in sweets and alcohol.
- Don’t binge eat – intake food slowly, giving your body the chance to feel full sooner
- Avoid smoking and chewing tobacco
- Avoid recreational drug use
Providing Motivation and Encouragement
Construction work can be grueling and exhausting. So it comes as no surprise that many workers may not want to hit the gym after work.
Heading to the local watering hole and taking advantage of happy hour specials may be more enticing than another hour or physical exertion.
This is where it is up to management to provide proper motivation, above and beyond simply avoiding major injuries while on the job.
Here are a handful of ways to encourage healthy activity beyond the workplace:
- Reducing healthcare costs for participation in smoking cessation, dietary and exercise programs
- Offer reduced-cost enrollment at a local gym or company-sponsored exercise class (anything from weight training to yoga)
- Create competitions that encourage walking, running, swimming and other forms of exercise.
- Offer paid time off, a catered lunch, or similarly enticing reward to those who participate
- Provide healthy snacks on site (simple as an apple or banana).
- Organize groups that walk, bicycle, stretch or do yoga during breaks or during lunch.
- Offer safe and secure bicycle storage to encourage those close to the site to commute via bike.
- Make resources and education – including newsletters, bulletins, etc – readily available.
- Find more information about workplace health and fitness promotion at the Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
A healthy workforce is beneficial for all involved. It will reduce lost time, work stoppages, and the cost of injury treatment and/or rehabilitation.
All of this improves the company’s bottom line, which means you keep your bosses happy while being able to offer more to employees.
If you need help seeling your workers even further, point out that staying healthy now can lead to a healthier, happier and potentially earlier retirement.
Fitness and industrial safety go hand-in-hand. Make sure your employees understand this and you can be confident and secure about industrial safety at your job site.
Do you have any tips on balancing physical exertion as a construction worker and regular exercise? What are some of the greatest benefits you’ve noticed?
Please join the conversation and share your experience with us on social media.