Could you be your Workplace Health Champion?

Active Cumbria are looking to identify ‘Active Workplace Champions’ in as many organisations across the County as possible. Champions can come from a variety of departments ranging from Occupational Health Nurses to Communications Officers or even a key individual within your workplace who feels strongly about health & physical activity.

Active Cumbria will offer these Ambassadors a whole host of sport and physical opportunities for their workplaces, as well as support in training and newsletters which can be shared across the workplace. 

Could you be a Health Champion for your workplace?

How many athletes praise their coach, their teammates, even their mums when they pick up gold medals? While their success may be down to their own finely honed sporting prowess, it's their nearest and dearest they frequently credit with helping them reach their most incredible achievements. It seems we all need a champion pushing us along.

Not everyone is destined for Olympic glory, but we could all benefit from having a support network to help us achieve our exercise goals – someone cheering us on from the side-lines and giving us an encouraging nudge when we're looking for excuses to dodge a workout session. Creating this buddy network and an exercise-friendly culture at work is one of the roles of a Workplace Challenge Champion.

Have you got what it takes to help your workplace get more active? Let's see how you measure up against these five characteristics.

1. Be proactive (and a good listener)

Why aren't your colleagues exercising? Is it because there aren't showering facilities available in your premises? Are they bored of hurried spinning classes at lunchtime in the local gym but at a loss what to do instead? Are they looking for an exercise buddy to keep them motivated? By proactively seeking solutions to the barriers stopping your workmates from exercising, you can create a more exercise-friendly work environment and get people involved in activity again.

2. Motivate your masses

A champion who doesn't show up at events, complains nonstop, or wants to quit early won't help your organisation reach its fitness goals. We're not suggesting you turn your workplace into a military inspired boot camp where you bark out orders to do twenty squats at hourly intervals, but you need to be a voice of positivity.

The problem is exercise isn't something most of us are naturally predisposed to do without a very tasty carrot dangled under our noses (make that a doughnut). Could your motivation be infectious? 10 minutes in the company of someone moaning about exercise is demoralising, yet a minute of your positive encouragement maybe all a workmate needs to put on their trainers and join you for a lunchtime jog or volunteer to take part in a workplace event.

3. Lead by example

You should treat your exercise commitments like you treat your other work appointments. If you set up a lunchtime walking group, make sure you attend. If you're encouraging others to pledge to take the stairs, make sure you're not caught in the lift every morning chomping on a croissant and slurping on a frothy cappuccino. It's one thing to occasionally cancel your workout plans with colleagues because you're sick or because something unexpected comes up, but it's another thing to constantly postpone events or make dropping out of group activity sessions the norm.

4. An inclusive attitude

Workplace exercise programmes should cater for every employee, whatever their age, fitness level or lifestyle preference. A Workplace Challenge Champion needs to support this, understanding that while some employees will jump at the chance of training for the three peaks challenge, others will find walking to the train station a more realistic place to start.

5. Self-belief and passion

You don't have to be blessed with a great physical talent or have a cabinet at home bursting with sporting trophies to be a Workplace Challenge Champion, but you do need to have plenty of self-belief and passion for exercise. You need to believe in the potential of your colleagues to feel the benefits of exercise and that you can be the one to motivate them to get active.

Part of the role of a Workplace Challenge Champion is to communicate the business case for workplace health and increasing participation in sport. You need to not only be able to list the many business benefits but believe in them as well. Workplace Challenge Champions know that getting active boosts productivity, raises morale and makes us happier, healthier and more satisfied because they've already felt the benefits of increasing their activity levels for themselves. And this is why they are so passionate to involve others in exercise.

Think you've got what it takes?

Why don't you sign up to be the Champion for your workplace? Whether you're a health coordinator, HR officer, volunteer champion or a general manager, these courses are designed to give you the skills, confidence and resources to promote better health and increase participation in sport and physical activity in your organisation.

Contact Kelly today for more details.

Contact Kelly today for more details