The importance of exercise and fitness in employee wellbeing

The Importance of Exercise and Fitness in Employee Wellbeing

As businesses shift focus from profit to employee wellbeing, the benefits of exercise and fitness programs in the workplace are becoming more apparent. The sedentary lifestyle of office workers has led to an increase in physical and mental health issues, which in turn impacts workplace performance. Regular exercise and fitness programs can have significant benefits on employee wellbeing, reducing absenteeism, increasing productivity, and improving overall company culture.

Decreased Absenteeism

One of the most obvious benefits of exercise and fitness programs is the reduction in absenteeism. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, ill health costs companies millions of dollars in lost productivity each year. Exercise has been shown to boost the immune system, reducing the frequency of illnesses and shortening their duration. Implementing an exercise program in the workplace, such as a daily yoga class or a company gym, can encourage employees to maintain an active lifestyle and reduce their risk of becoming ill.

Increased Productivity

Regular exercise has been shown to increase energy levels and focus, leading to increased productivity. Exercise releases endorphins, which improve mood, reduce stress, and increase cognitive function. When employees engage in physical activity, they return to work feeling refreshed and energized, ready to tackle their workday with renewed focus.

Improved Company Culture

Implementing an exercise and fitness program in the workplace can improve overall company culture. When employees engage in fitness programs together, it encourages teamwork and camaraderie. This creates a positive work environment, which is linked to reduced stress levels, improved mental health, and increased job satisfaction.

Encouraging Employee Participation

Encouraging employee participation in exercise and fitness programs can be a challenge. It is important to create a program that is accessible and that meets the individual needs of each employee. A company gym or regular fitness classes are great options, but other ideas might include organized walks or runs during lunch breaks, or implementing a standing desk program.


Employers who prioritize employee wellbeing enjoy the benefits of a healthier, more productive workforce. Regular exercise and fitness programs are an essential part of a comprehensive employee wellbeing program. The benefits of exercise on employee health, productivity and mental health are irrefutable. With the right support and resources, employers can create a culture of fitness and wellbeing that leads to a happier, healthier, and more productive workforce.