Wellness programs are popping up everywhere….churches, corporate headquarters- even schools! In fact, your school may already have a wellness program in place. If so, kudos to you! You’re already one step ahead of the game!
If you have a wellness program in place, is it working? Are people participating and getting healthier? For those without a program in place, wellness can seem daunting. It seems as if companies and schools spend thousands of dollars with few results.
Why is this? There is no cultural change that takes place.
In order to create a healthier school there needs to be a cultural shift from what is the norm to what is a healthier norm.
A cultural change to create a healthier school doesn’t need to be more difficult than it has to be.
In fact, a cultural change to create a healthier school can be done in 3 easy steps:
- Remove junk food and sodas from break rooms
- Vending machines
- No Dumping Rule
- Encourage physical activity at work
- Walking meetings
- Walking breaks
- Take the stairs
- Don’t offer food rewards
Remove junk food and soda from break rooms:
- Replace junk food in vending machines with healthier alternatives—or remove them altogether!
- Don’t tempt employees with unhealthy foods and soda by instituting the No Dumping Rule—no dumping leftover baked goods in treats in the break room!
- Instead of offering cookies at meetings, offer veggies/fruit and keep pitchers of water in the refrigerator instead of soda/tea/juice!
Encourage physical activity at work
- Instead of the usual hour-long sit-down meeting, have a “walking” meeting:
o Walk outside or stand up for the meeting if walking is not an option!
- Encourage employees to take 5-10 min. walking breaks in the morning and afternoon to boost energy levels! A healthier alternative to soda, junk food or energy drinks!
- Use enticing signs to direct employees to the stairs
o Make the stairs more aesthetically pleasing—carpet, artwork, lighting
Don’t offer food rewards
- Rewarding employees with food is sending the wrong message
- Offer other positive rewards-