The benefits of sport: 10 unbeatable reasons to adopt sport at work

Reading time: 14 minutes
07/05/2024

Here it is, summer is already over: the sun, the vacationers, the road, the exoticism or the change of scenery and the beach... It was good, wasn't it? 

You took the opportunity to do some sports: play with the kids, ride a bike, walk or run... It's so nice! 

However, once back home and despite all the nice promises to resume the sport... There is no time! 

Between family and work... Not easy! Rest assured, there's a solution: exercise at work!

Yes, it's possible, and increasingly seen as a real competitive advantage for companies. So it's a win-win situation for everyone, staff and employees alike...

So you'd like to convince your boss to adopt the idea of sporting activities at work this autumn? 

Don't worry, we've done the work for you: Here are 10 unbeatable reasons and benefits for adopting sport in the workplace!

But be warned, after that you'll have no excuse to exercise... You've been warned.

1. NO MORE ABSENTEEISM

This is an unstoppable argument to convince your company to adopt sports in your company:

As we know, the absence of employees causes difficulties in terms of organization and productivity for the company. ....

And of course, this is expensive: the Sapiens Institute (Study 2018), has calculated the cost of absenteeism: 108 billion euros per year! The study by the broker Gras Savoye Willis Towers Watson (2021) specifies this cost: "for a company of 1,000 employees with an average salary of €30K per year and an absenteeism rate of 5%, the full cost to the employer is estimated to be between €1.5 and €3M per year." 

 

However, regular physical activity by employees has an interesting impact: less absences or shorter absences! (30 to 40% reduction in absenteeism)

The calculation is quite simple: more sport for employees = more fitness and health for them, and therefore less absenteeism. 

(VAN DEN HEUVEL, S., BOSHUIZEN, H., et al. (2005). "Effect of Sporting Activity on Absenteeism in a Working Population," British Journal of Sports Medicine, vol. 39, no. 3, pp. e 15-e 15. And PROPER, K. I., VAN DEN HEUVEL, S., et al. (2006). "Dose-Response Relation Between Physical Activity and Sick Leave," British Journal of Sports Medicine, vol. 40, no. 2, pp. 173-178 and WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION (2008). Prevention of non-communicable diseases through diet and physical activity in the workplace: report of a joint WHO meeting.)

Source: https://www.lachezprise.fr/actualites/focus-sur-lactivite-physique-en-entreprise-outil-de-performance/

2. MORE PRODUCTIVE EMPLOYEES

The argument that hits the nail on the head and most importantly, that we all care about: 

When employees exchange their suit and tie or suit and high heels for a pair of jogging shoes, it would increase their productivitý by 6 to 9%!(Goodwill management 2021 study). 

In better shape or healthier or simply full of energy thanks to these physical activities, they are then more motivated and more efficient. Another mutual benefit that will delight both employer and employee.

And to top it all off: a gain of 3 years in life expectancy... 

(I'll go get my sneakers and come back... won't you?)

3. MORE PROFITS, LESS EXPENSES

The costs associated with health and safetý at work can represent considerable sums for some organizations. And this is where sport has its role to play. Thanks to it we've seen that employees increase their productivity and health capital.

So, while more productivity means more profits, less absenteeism and fewer accidents mean lower company expenses. The economic benefits are therefore worth noting.

(Go to your boss and tell him that you can help him save money... He will be all ears)

4. A GOOD WORK/LIFE BALANCE

As you know, this is one of the strongest expectations of employees: better division of time between private and professional life. You are even 56% to worry that the advantage of teleworking implies a too systematic availability for the company. (Study "The future of work: from remote to hybrid" Capgemini)

Providing employees with physical activities is an opportunity for them to disconnect, to take breaks. By encouraging them to take a real break from their workday, the company reassures them of its intention to respect the work/life balance. And it's a win-win situation given the increase in well-being and productivity generated.

(I'd go for a yoga break, wouldn't you?)

benefits associated with exercise
Source: https://www.pourlascience.fr/sd/medecine/les-bienfaits-du-sport-sur-la-sante-7684.php

5. A "HEALTHY MIND IN A HEALTHY BODY" ("mens sana in corpore sano" Juvenal)

All these studies have one thing in common: sport at work improves health! A real asset in the workplace, an employee in good physical condition is able to carry out his or her tasks with greater enthusiasm and ease.

The benefits of sport at work are well known: elimination of toxins, improved cardiovascular capacity, weight regulation, release ofhappy hormones (endorphins) with soothing properties.

The preventive effects on many physical diseases are recognized: musculoskeletal disorders (MSD), high blood pressure and strokes, certain cancers, such as breast, colon and lung.  

Building muscle capacity reduces the risk of injury, and flexibility or suppleness of the body helps prevent some injuries. 

Finally, regular exercise boosts the immune system, with relaxation and flexibility activities such as yoga (in just one session!). 

The result: employees who are less stressed and in better shape! Because what's good for the body is good for the mind!

Yes, mental health is also concerned: burn-out, for example, which is often linked to overwork, lack of recognition or an unhealthy work climate. Stress at work is one of the causes of many psychological diseases. 

The beneficial effects of physical activity on psychological health are recognized both on people with disorders and those without, acting both in prevention and in treatment of stress or depression. 

Sport against stress - SPART
Source: https://fondation-ramsaysante.com/questions/stress/comment-le-sport-peut-nous-aider-gerer-le-stress

6. BE ZEN AT WORK

Not to be tense with colleagues or with your boss... Now that's a nice project! Everyone hopes for a calm and relaxed climate at work. 

Sharing physical and sporting activities with colleagues and even managers helps to improve relationships, collaboration, communication and a positive working atmosphere. 

The practice of physical activities has the power to modify certain stress factors, such as the work climate. Playing sports together means creating bonds and getting to know each other better. This strengthens team spirit, facilitates communication within the organization and makes it easier to integrate the latest arrivals... (the famous onboarding not to be missed) 

Encouraging collective sports breaks at work strengthens bonds between people, brings conviviality and reduces stress in employee-supervisor relations. 

(Just thinking about it, I already feel more relaxed... And the hammam at work, is it possible ? What do you mean you shouldn't push Granny into the nettles? You know granny?)

(MICHISHITA, R., JIANG, Y., et al. (2017). "The Practice of Active Rest by Workplace Units Improves Personal Relationships, Mental Health, and Physical Activity Among Workers," Journal of Occupational Health, vol. 59, no. 2, pp. 122-130, PIERRE J and I, B. (2010). A healthy mind in a healthy body: promoting sport at work, Management, vol. 35, no. 3, 10 p. )

7. ATTRACT AND RETAIN THE BEST TALENT!

Faced with the "great resignation" or the shortage of Talents, companies are at war to hire and retain the best employees. In a post-covid context and with a drop in unemployment, it is necessary to succeed in standing out to attract future employees. 

Beyond the compensation and benefits that the company can offer, the concern for well-being and health displayed by the company can weigh in the balance and be a competitive advantage. 

A strategy that includes sport in the company can score points in order to retain or interest a workforce that has become demanding in terms of working conditions. Thus, 89% of company managers emphasize the beneficial influence of physical and sports activities on team spirit and the integration of newcomers (Study "State of the art, obstacles and levers to the development of sports in companies" of the OpinionWay 2020 Barometer).

Not all companies will have the same budget available to offer sports in the company but there are various solutions to adapt, don't panic! 

(https://www.lefigaro.fr/societes/face-a-la-grande-demission-ils-prennent-des-initiatives-originales-pour-retenir-leurs-salaries-20220718)

A stronger employer brand - SPART
Source : ParlonsRH - OpinionWay survey

8. STRENGTHEN THE COMPANY'S IMAGE

Offering physical and sports activities to employees, showing them that their health and the working atmosphere count... This is bound to be good for the company's image, as it comes across as responsible and concerned about the well-being of its employees. 

This good image can be further enhanced by the organization of competitions or sporting events open to the public. The company's logo is displayed in a fun and positive way, or even in a charitable way if the event has a great cause. Employees feel proud to belong to this company and others want to join. The image of the company is radiant and reinforced by the sport.

The soft skills of sport transposable in the world of sport - SPART
Source : Quête de sens pro

9. MORE SOFT SKILLS FOR EMPLOYEES

Soft skills are "behavioral competencies, most often acquired outside of the school or university setting. There are two common translations for the term soft skills: people skills and behavioral skills.

The result of our creativity, our education, our open-mindedness, these skills are acquired and grow over the years. Leadership, compassion, emotional intelligence, stress management, etc.

Sport, as a tool to surpass oneself, will have an influence on the development of your employees' soft skills. 

10. SPORT MAKES YOU SMART

Playing sports improves cognitive functions! The brain stays alert and young longer. It is also a way to fight or prevent certain neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's. 

Some studies also speak of improved memory or concentration, information processing... For example, walking would promote creativity or creative thinking.

(SMITH, P. J., BLUMENTHAL, J. A., et al. (2010). "Aerobic Exercise and Neurocognitive Performance: A Meta-Analytic Review of Randomized Controlled Trials," Psychosomatic Medicine 72(3):239).

https://neuromotrix.com/fr/les-bienfaits-de-lactivite-physique-sur-les-fonctions-cognitives/

Improving employee well-being - SPART
Source: https://www.myhappyjob.fr/7-idees-pour-developper-la-pratique-du-sport-en-entreprise/

And of 10 ! we will not have lied to you... We even kept some for later, in case you ask for more...

As you can see, physical activity and sport at work have many benefits for employees, employers and companies alike.

And there are now many possible formulas: Sport in the company or in a club, using a sports coach or via an app... The possibilities are truly numerous. 

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The benefits of sport and health: A winning combination

In addition to the 10 good reasons presented in the article, there is a direct link between health and sport. Regular physical activity can have a profound impact on your physical and mental well-being.

Physical benefits of sport

  • Improved cardiovascular health Exercise strengthens your heart and lungs, reducing the risk of heart disease, stroke and high blood pressure.
  • Improved weight management Physical activity helps you lose weight, burn calories, maintain a healthy weight and reduce the risk of obesity and related health problems.
  • Stronger bones and muscles Physical exercise promotes bone density, reducing the risk of osteoporosis and fractures. It also builds muscle mass and strength, improving overall fitness and reducing the risk of injury.
  • Reduced risk of chronic disease Regular physical activity can reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes, certain types of cancer and other chronic diseases.
  • Improved immune function Exercise can boost your immune system, making you less susceptible to disease.

Mental benefits of sport

  • Reduced stress and anxiety Physical activity releases endorphins, natural mood enhancers that can help alleviate stress, anxiety and depression.
  • Improved sleep quality Exercise promotes better sleep cycles, leading to more restful, restorative sleep.
  • Improved cognitive function Regular physical activity can improve brain function, memory, concentration and overall cognitive performance.
  • Enhanced self-esteem and confidence Achieving fitness goals and feeling the positive effects of exercise can lead to greater self-esteem and confidence.
  • Increased social interaction Participating in sports or group fitness classes can provide opportunities for social interaction, reducing feelings of isolation and loneliness.

Incorporating physical activity into your daily routine significantly improves your overall health and well-being.  

The benefits of sport: ‍Choose SPART, your sporting ally for a healthier, more active life at work!

Looking to improve your health and well-being? Do you want to get back into shape or discover a new sporting activity? SPART is there for you!

SPART offers a sports program, with the help of an app that supports you in practicing regular physical activity at work. Whether you're a beginner or an experienced athlete, SPART offers programs to suit everyone.

What are the benefits of corporate sport?

The benefits of physical activity in the workplace are numerous:

  • Improved concentration and productivity.
  • Prevention of musculoskeletal disorders.
  • Strengthening team cohesion.
  • Improved morale and motivation.
  • Improves mental health by reducing fatigue, stress, anxiety and depression.
  • Strengthens the immune system.
  • Improved sleep quality.
  • Increased energy and vitality.
  • Improved self-esteem and self-confidence.
  • Socializing and strengthening social ties.

SPART helps you achieve your goals with :

  • Sports programs for everyone.
  • Nutritional advice for a healthy, balanced diet.
  • Access to exclusive content: videos, articles on health and well-being, etc.
  • A community of sports enthusiasts to share experiences and motivate each other.

SPART application: 30 minutes a day for a better life

The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends at least 30 minutes of moderate physical activity per day for adults. With SPART, you can easily integrate physical activity into your daily routine, even if you have a busy work schedule. ⏱️

Get active with SPART and enjoy all the benefits of physical activity at work!

SPART: For inclusive sports programs accessible to all at work!

SPART, your expert in promoting an active and healthy lifestyle in the workplace, places inclusivity and accessibility at the heart of its programs. We understand that each individual is unique and has his or her own physical needs and abilities. That's why we're committed to offering sports activities adapted to everyone, without exception.

By joining the SPART community, you gain access to a multitude of varied and stimulating physical activities. Group classes, individual sessions, specialized workshops... there's something for every taste and level! What's more, our intuitive mobile app lets you track your progress, receive nutritional advice and stay motivated thanks to our dynamic community of sports enthusiasts.

Don't leave anyone out in the cold! Opt for SPART and offer all your employees the chance to take part in inclusive and accessible sports programs. Promote well-being, team spirit and cohesion within your teams.

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