Salesforce take part in the Aviva Workplace Fitness Challenge
Over 130 companies from across the country sign up to Aviva Health Workplace Fitness Challenge
Over 130 companies are embarking on a nationwide workplace fitness initiative and supporting their employees in becoming more physically active during the working day. The Aviva Workplace Fitness Challenge has been developed by experts from Aviva, DCU, IT Carlow with the support of the Nutrition & Health Foundation to encourage companies and their employees to make small changes which could have a big impact on their overall health and fitness. Companies participating in the challenge include Indeed, Storm Technology, Daft, Marks & Spencer’s and Salesforce.
Salesforce have some advice and tips for companies taking part in the challenge:
Over 40,000 people have downloaded the innovative Move Your MET fitness App since it was first showcased as a way of measuring fitness on Operation Transformation at the beginning of January. The App allows participants to measure their current fitness levels, monitor how they are improving, and benchmark themselves against the general population.
Research shows that the average person spends 5.3 hours sitting each working day and 40% of office-bound people don’t get any physical exercise at all during the working day. The Aviva Health Workplace Fitness Challenge aims to improve this by encouraging employees to get active together. A MET score is a simple yet effective means of calculating cardiovascular fitness levels, with a higher score indicating a better level of fitness. For every 1 MET increase in your fitness level, your overall risk of a cardiovascular incident is reduced by 15% and risk of premature death is reduced by 13%.
The concept has been supported by two of the country’s leading experts in health and physical activity, Professor Niall Moyna, of DCU’s School of Health and Human Performance and Dr. Sarah Kelly, IT Carlow.
According to Professor Moyna, “We have over 1.9million people at work in Ireland, many of whom are based at a desk or a work-station for the majority of their working day and then spend long times commuting. That makes it much more difficult for them to get a good level of physical exercise on a daily basis and there are known negative health consequences to this. The Aviva Workplace Fitness Challenge is designed to get people talking and to encourage and entice both employers and employees to think about what they could do differently to be more active, fitter and healthier.”
James Parker, CEO of Aviva Health, said “The programme isn’t just about celebrating who is the fittest and fastest. We want to reach employees who aren’t as, inspiring them to think about their current level of fitness by measuring their MET and to take simple, attainable steps to become more active and healthier in the long-term. Many find it hard to find time in their hectic lifestyles and to keep motivated. That’s where we believe the workplace has a role to play and by creating a programme for all employees, we can encourage small changes to take place.”
As well as the coveted title and trophy for Irelands Fittest Company in 2016, there are super prizes for the companies that see the most improvement over the course of the six weeks. There will also be an award for Ireland’s most improved small company (50 employees or less), Ireland’s most improved mid-sized company (51- 250 employees) and Ireland’s most improved large company (more than 250 employees).
The Aviva Health Workplace Fitness Challenge starts today and runs until Wednesday 16th March and the App is available on the Google Play Store and Apple App Store. For further information, visit www.moveyourmet.ie.
[i] Healthy Ireland Survey 2015, IPSOS MRBI
[ii] Ibec National Workplace Wellbeing Day Research among 1,005 18-65yr olds employed in the Republic of Ireland, Behaviour & Attitudes October - November 2014
[iii] Kodama et al, 2009, JAMA