Workers all over Bucks are being encouraged to take a leap on Leap Day to show how much they care about looking after their health.
Companies in the county have been urged to use Monday February 29 as a ‘call to action’ to staff to ensure they keep active during the working day.
The appeal comes from Leap, the Sport and Activity Partnership for Bucks & Milton Keynes, who are asking people to make a special effort to build in proper breaks from their desks, workstations or vehicles. And Leap is calling on firms, as a statement of intent, to send in pictures of their teams leaping in the air during these breaks.
Evidence shows that taking breaks during the working day also benefits companies because it improves productivity and morale, as well as cutting down on absence through sickness.
Mark Ormerod, Director of Leap, said staff should use the breaks to get fit by taking part in the ‘Workplace Challenge’ – a scheme where companies and individuals compete to see who is the most active. The idea is that workers spur each other on during social exercise and activities.
He said: “We’re challenging you to move more during your lunch break. Grab your colleagues and swap soggy sandwiches for a swift stroll, cycle, swim or exercise class and revolutionise your lunch break. Along with the Olympic cycle, Leap Day only happens every four years and it is important we keep delivering in between and maintain a strong participation in sport and activity.”
He stressed that taking an activity break was not just for fitness fanatics and added: “There are more health benefits for an inactive person in taking 30 minutes of exercise than there is for a marathon runner doing an extra mile.”
So far, a number of companies and organisations have agreed to join in Leap’s Leap Day initiative, including Buckinghamshire Fire & Rescue Service who hope to have staff leaping where appropriate on February 29.
More backing for the Leap Day leap came from FCC Environment, the company which looks after the county’s Household Waste Recycling Centres as well as the new Energy from Waste plant at Greatmoor.
To submit a picture of your team leaping on Leap Day or to find out more, email Kirsty Ingham at firstname.lastname@example.org Go to: http://www.leapwithus.org.uk/what-can-i-do/workplace-challenge/