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Eastleigh Business Conference

Posted on 28th June 2018 by

Green, healthy, prosperous – the Eastleigh Business Conference

goPhysio’s Non-Clinical Director, Fiona, was invited to join the panel at Eastleigh Borough Council’s ‘Green, healthy, prosperous’ business conference on 27th June, at The Point in Eastleigh.

Joined by over 60 local businesses, the aim of the conference was to bring together senior representatives from some of the borough’s big brands, as well as up-and-coming companies, to share their experience and knowledge of making businesses healthier and more environmentally friendly.

Sustainability and Green Practice

The conference opened with an interesting overview of the Emerging Local Plan 2016-2036. The first panel, chaired by Lee Peck of Lee Peck Media, discussed best practice in promoting sustainability Refilland green practices in the Borough. We heard from local bus company Blue Star, The Swan Centre’s manager and from Southern Water. It was inspiring to hear about initiatives and schemes that have been such a success in reducing waste, promoting ‘green’ practices and making businesses more sustainable.

Plastic was a hot topic and it was fascinating to hear about the Re Fill Scheme, a national, practical tap water campaign that aims to make refilling your bottle as easy, convenient and cheap as possible by introducing refill stations on every street. Such a great, simple idea and goPhysio signed up immediately. So, if you’re passing by us in Chandlers Ford, you can pop in and fill up your water bottle. Wherever else you are, just download the Refill app and see if there’s a Refill station near you – easy!

Health and Wellbeing

Next up was the Health & Wellbeing section of the event.

EBC Business Conference goPhysioFiona was invited to discuss issues surrounding best practice in promoting health and well-being among employees. She was joined on the panel by Alex Ryding, Environmental Health and safety Manager of Cooper Vision and Lynne Miller, Director of HR and Development at Ageas.

In 2011, an independent review commissioned by the DWP calculated that sick pay and associated expenditure cost companies £9 billion per year.  Nestle reckons that the management of these sickness-related absences is 2.5 times more expensive than paying the associated salary.

Earlier this year, a study of 32,000 workers by Vitality Health in partnership with the University of Cambridge and Mercer, concluded that many employees now turn up for work when too sick to be useful. This phenomenon, known as presenteeism, combined with the more familiar absenteeism, could be costing a staggering £73 billion per year. Meanwhile, the Workplace Research Foundation reports a significant link between engagement and productivity. EBC Business Conference goPhysio

Musculoskeletal Disorders (MSD’s), so issues affecting bones, joints, muscles and soft tissues, like back pain, neck pain or repetitive strains, comprise of up to 55% of workplace absences. So have a massive impact for employers. At goPhysio, assessing and managing MSD’s is exactly what we do, so Fiona was expertly placed to provide an insight into this area.

The key areas of discussion that all the panelists agreed on, were:

  • Employers must create a positive working environment for employees to encourage a healthy workplace
  • Regular breaks are an important part of being healthy at work
  • Initiatives such as step challenges, run clubs, walking meetings and cycle to work schemes are well received by employees and support and encourage a healthy workplace
  • Prevention of workplace injuries should be a priority
  • Physical and mental health are inextricably linked
  • An open and honest culture helps promote wellbeing in the workplace
  • Resilience training is a valuable skill for employees
  • Wherever possible, employees should stay at work – this has been shown to improve outcomes physically and mentally

At goPhysio, we advocate many simple solutions to creating a healthy workplace, reducing the risk of MSD’s and minimising their impact. These small but practical tips can be adapted and utilised  whether you work from home or a large corporation.

  • Embedding a culture of being an active and healthy workplace, leading from the top, is crucial.
  • Small changes can have a big impact- encourage what we call, an active working environment. Move the printer to a central location that people have to get up and walk to, use task based activities e.g. stand every time you’re on the phone, have walking or standing meetings, ensure people take a good break every day, introduce flexible working patterns, reduce email use – go and speak to someone, set workplace challenges with activity monitors or pedometers, see up running clubs or promote ParkRuns. There are so many simple ideas!  
  • Use a variety of workstation set ups. Seated desks, height adjustable desks so you can spend some time standing, perching areas, even working from the floor – variety is key!  
  • Think about having tangible incentives. Rewards for activity, using steps, workplace challenges. Everybody loves bit of healthy competition.
  • Have an open honest culture to report any pain / injury. If left brushed under carpet, there is much more potential for the injury to become a longer term problem and more difficult to tackle. Employees shouldn’t be afraid  to openly discuss any issues with fear of consequences. 
  • Think about having channels for early intervention if an injury is reported. Evidence shows that early intervention is beneficial in prevuing long term issues. So getting the right assessment and treatment, with a realistic management plan is crucial.
  • Education is such an important factor. Pain does not always equate to damage and staying in work wherever possible gives the best outcome. We need to remove the fear that often surrounds pain and injury.

In order to be effective, workplace health and wellbeing strategies must be embedded in the fabric of the organisation, be accessible and well-promoted, supported by senior leadership, and, importantly, offer employees tangible incentives to participate.

goPhysio were delighted to receive an award recognising their contribution to a healthy community. We work directly with Eastleigh Borough Council to support their employee’s physical health by providing physiotherapy and rehabilitation. If this is something that your business would like to know more about then we’d love to hear from you and share how we can help you too. Just email fiona at fiona@gophysiotherapy.co.uk

It was such a positive afternoon and it is really encouraging to see how Eastleigh Borough Council are being proactive in tackling these issues for local businesses.

Read More 

Active Working Tips – Easy Desk Exercises

Looking after yourself when working from home

UK businesses are failing the health needs of their office staff

EBC Business Conference goPhysio

 

 


Christmas Shopping Survival Guide!

Posted on 9th December 2017 by

Fiona’s top tip earlier in the week was to try and get out and do some Christmas shopping rather than be tempted to do to do it all online. Christmas shopping Christmas shopping survival guide can be a great way of getting some activity into your week, but it can also be quite physically demanding. This weekend is surely set to be a busy one for Christmas shopping, so here’s a few pointers to help you get the most of it!

Take a back pack – this is a great way of carrying shopping without straining your neck, shoulders and arms. It spreads the loads easily and keeps your hands free for extras!

Wear good footwear – you can really rack up the steps when you’re out shopping, plus you’ll potentially have lots of standing round in queues and carrying extra weight. Wear something comfortable and supportive, that is cushioned for some shock absorbency. Also, given the icy weather we’ve woken up to, something non-slip is a great idea.

Break up your day – takes lots of breaks to give yourself a bit of a rest. Take a few minutes to have a seat, check off your shopping list and plan the rest of your day. A great excuse for a lovely coffee too!

Do it in small chunks – if you can, plan a few smaller shopping trips rather than one huge spree. Breaking it up will take less of a toll on your physically (and mentally!). It’s also nice variety to go to different towns or shopping centres.

Keep well hydrated – particularly important if you’re in and out of warm shops, inside and outside. Carry a bottle of water with you and sip it regularly throughout the day, as well as making regular refreshment stops to recharge.

Spread the load across smaller bags – in addition  to a backpack, take a few smaller bags so that you can carry your shopping evenly. Try and think symmetry so you carry even loads on each side.

Go with someone to share the load – this is really helpful to share carrying the bags and also a nice social way to shop!

Order bigger, bulkier items online – if you’ve seen something big in store, think about ordering it online so you don’t have to struggle with carrying it. Some shops also offer a collection service too, so you can pick it up after you have finished your shopping.

Happy shopping! 

 

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