Here at Giant Towers we incorporate office exercise as play into our workdays in some… unconventional ways.
During a typical work day, us adults spend almost eight hours with our bums glued to our seats. That’s not including sitting down during our commutes, and then sitting on the sofa in front of Netflix all evening.
Our friends at Wellbeing People say that physical inactivity is becoming a real problem in the work place, as well as society as a whole:
“Remaining active is essential to prevent muscular dysfunction and ill-health; reports suggest that too much sitting can cause high cholesterol, lower back pain, colon cancer and slow blood circulation to name but a few. Try making some small changes to your working day – for example, go for a walk in your breaks, install a sit stand office desk, take regular breaks which include gentle stretches, invest in a fit band to monitor your steps and try to use the stairs and not the lift!” Justine Clarabut, Wellbeing People.
Here are some exercises you can do and things you should consider to keep you active during the day and lessen the effects sitting still can have on your body and mentality. They also won’t interrupt your day, so there is no room for the “I don’t have time” excuse here thank you very much!
Firstly, start your day by taking the stairs and avoid the dreaded small talk in the lift. Even if you’re on the seventh floor, like we are, it’s a great way to get your day and heart going. If you can, take two steps at a time.
When you’re sat at your desk why not try a leg raising technique. Depending on your seating arrangements this should be pretty discrete so you can do it all day without weird looks from your coworkers. Simply stretch out your legs and lift them as high as you can one at a time, hold this for two seconds before switching legs. Repeat 15 times with each leg. You can also choose to add a weight, use your bag and lift it by the handles with your feet.
Instead of spending the time writing out an email or dialling an extension, get up from your desk and walk over to the person you want to speak to. Just get up and move! If you don’t have anyone to go and speak to, just stand up and do a full body stretch and shake. It will only look a little bit weird, I promise.
Simple right? These are only a few of the many things you can do. But why not have some fun with it?
At GCHQ, as you’ve probably gathered by now, we incorporate work and play. Our office exercises disguise themselves in creative, playful ways. For example, here are a few things around our office that keep us active and increase productivity:
- A ball pit. It’s a work out just trying to climb the baby gate into the room, let alone wading through the colourful balls. When people are sat in there during meetings they tend to play and show off their juggling skills. That must work out all of your muscles.
- Scooters. Surely I don’t need to explain how scooters can be a form of exercise? They’re quite random in an office, yes. But lots of fun, and getting to and from desks is suddenly much more fun and an increase in physical activity.
- Nerf wars. This one gives you great reflexes and a steady aiming arm. It keeps you on your toes all day so you’re never bored and constantly moving to avoid the incoming bullets.
- As I mentioned before, our office is on the seventh floor. Taking the stairs rather than the lift is definitely an option. Not one we all take, but it’s nice to know it’s there.
- We have a darts board, ping pong table and pool table. These are all a good work out, especially the way some people play.
- There is even a rowing machine in the office. Sometimes staring out over the English Channel all day inspires us to row.
Our offices may not be alike, but there’s nothing stopping you from incorporating more fun into your ‘officising’. It’s a well known fact that adult brains can only concentrate for so long before they start to loose focus. Having fun and exercising can increase productivity and make that concentration period that little bit better.
Find a way as an office or as an individual to combine work, play and exercise and become a happier and healthier person during your work day. Let us know how you keep healthy and productive at work by posting on our Twitter or Facebook page.
If you head over to our GC Jedi Training Box you could win some ‘officising’ bits and bobs, as well as lots of other swag to increase fun and productivity in your office.