5 Ways Exercise Can Help You Be More Productive at Work and Prevent Illness

Victoria Davis

Studies from the CDC and other sources have shown the importance of exercise for better help for years now. Much of the focus of these studies has to do with increased life span and just a healthier overall life. Some of the benefits include decreased blood pressure, fewer cases of diabetes, lower risks of a stroke and the ability to prevent illness.

Now research is beginning to show that exercise can have a huge impact on work productivity, chronic illness, and injury prevention in the workplace.

Increase Focus

For those with poor focus, medication is often offered as a means of alleviating this. Exercise is actually an effective means of combating this without medication, however.

Help Guide reports, “Physical activity immediately boosts the brain’s dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin levels—all of which affect focus and attention. In this way, exercise works in much the same way as ADHD medications such as Ritalin and Adderall.”

It doesn’t have to be a long exercise routine. You can work in simple exercises such as jumping jacks or squats and reap the benefits of increased focus for you and your employees.

Boost Mood

For employees feeling overwhelmed with large projects, small bouts of exercise can help improve their mood. This has a lot to do with the release of endorphins. This in turn can help decrease depression symptoms.

Exercise also serves as a form of distraction from the tricky problems facing employees as they try to complete their tasks. This break could be exactly what they need to figure out a solution.

Engage Employees 

It’s hard when your employees are frequently distracted, and it may seem like there’s no way to get them back on track. This is especially true as the workday drags on. Harvard Health reports that this can be remedied through exercise as well.

An exercise that makes blood flow harder and faster, like HIIT workouts, increases the hippocampus in the brain. The hippocampus is responsible for verbal memory and learning, and increasing it helps your employees stay more engaged. You need to be careful, however, as HIIT workouts that leave employees exhausted could lead to a decrease in engagement.

Deter Absenteeism

Employees with bad health are more likely to call in. With so many viruses going around, such as the flu or stomach bug, it’s only natural that you will see an increase in absenteeism. Doctor trips can quickly become expensive, but exercise is a great way to combat sickness.

According to the National Library of Medicine, exercise can help boost the immune system both short-term and long-term. Those who spend time exercising generally tend to be out less, and recover faster when they do need to miss work. 

Prevent Illness and Injury

There is still a lot of research that needs to be done, but some studies have shown exercise can help the body fight off or even prevent illness, including cancer. The National Cancer Institute reports that this works mainly because the body is able to detect potential cancer cells, and eradicates them before they can begin to grow.

Another way that exercise can help employees is by preventing injuries. By building up muscles, workers are often less likely to tear muscles, injure their back, or break bones if they have been working out. Some excellent exercises which can help prevent injuries include squats, lunges, and light weight lifting. Just don’t forget to stretch, as this can prevent you from pulling a muscle.


Sworkit Health is a digital health, wellness and fitness tool designed to empower individuals and help promote healthy, active engagement. Employers around the world use Sworkit to support employee wellness benefit programs. Contact us today to learn more.

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