According to the World Health Organization, physical inactivity can have serious implications for people’s health. A sedentary lifestyle increases the risk of cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, high blood pressure, osteoporosis, lipid disorders, depression, anxiety, and a whole host of other health issues. Most health professionals agree that walking 10,000 steps a day (approximately 5 miles) is the ideal goal to set for improving health and reducing the health risks caused by inactivity. But it can be a big challenge to fit physical activity into an already packed workday. One way sedentary workers can merge work and health is by scheduling walking meetings.
Walking meetings allow teams to incorporate physical activity throughout their workday, which results in improved health outcomes, reduced health care costs, and a reduction in sick days. In addition, studies have shown that changes of scenery, especially in nature, can trigger new neuro-pathways in our brains which produce new ideas and supports problem-solving. Walking meetings also build comradery among employees, and increase collaboration by freeing employees to move freely rather than being confined to a seat at a conference table.
So the next time you’re sending a meeting invitation to your team, consider setting the meeting location as “walking” and give it a try! If you and your colleagues find the meeting outcome positive, make it a regular part of your workplace culture. Your employees (and their health) will thank you for it!
MUIH’s Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Workplace Wellness prepares working professionals to assess, develop, implement, and evaluate workplace wellness programs in a multitude of employment settings. Register for one of our informational webinars or an on-campus Integrative Health Graduate Fair to learn more.