It should be no surprise that the vast majority of Americans do not get enough exercise, or any exercise at all.
But the percentage of Americans who are mostly sedentary can be shocking.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), as many as 80 percent of Americans fail to meet the CDC’s Physical Activity Guidelines.1 These guidelines suggest that adults get a minimum of two and a half hours per week of moderately intense activity such as walking. An hour and a half per week of vigorous aerobic exercise such as jogging can be substituted for moderate activities.
The main reason for this exercise deficiency is simply lack of time.2 It’s not that people don’t want to work out, but that they feel they can’t budget it into their week. Individuals who work full time spend one-third of the majority of their days at work. Whatever free time is left over is often dedicated to child care or regular household maintenance. When confronted with these demands, people may find it difficult to make exercise a priority.
Given the widespread nature of this problem, and that the No. 1 obstacle to fitness is lack of time, it should be self-evident that the best way to get people motivated is to bring the exercise to them—more specifically, into their workplace.
A successful corporate wellness program is about more than just walking laps around the office during lunch. It should also incorporate nutritional counseling, lifestyle coaching (to help people quit smoking, for example), and free health screenings among other features.3
Incorporating chiropractic care
Many of the aspects that Fortune 500 lists as hallmarks of successful corporate wellness programs easily fall within the scope of chiropractic.3 Offering nutritional counseling, stress-reduction techniques, yoga or other stretching and strengthening classes, and tips on ergonomically proper postures at the workplace are just a few ways in which chiropractors can add to the current trend of company wellness programs.4
DCs looking to get into corporate wellness should start by determining what type of companies they want to target.4 A program for a large company will be differ than one for a small, family-owned business.
Start small, perhaps by offering a limited number of services, such as a daily yoga or stress-management class. Begin with businesses in the immediate area. Talk with other companies in the same office complex.
Friends, family members, and patients may have workplaces looking to launch a corporate wellness program. If these people are in an upper-management position, they may have the authority to implement a wellness program at their workplace.
Perhaps the biggest advantage DCs have in offering company wellness programs is that they may already be a known quantity. Furthermore, odds may be good that at least one person at a company has undergone chiropractic care. These people can be a chiropractor’s greatest ally in instituting a workplace wellness program. Who better to champion the value of chiropractic than somebody who has already greatly benefited?
1 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “One in five adults meet overall physical activity guidelines.” CDC Newsroom. http://www.cdc.gov/media/releases/2013/p0502-physical-activity.html. Published May 2, 2013. Accessed May 19, 2015.
2 Web MD. The top 6 exercise excuses and how to beat them. Fitness & Exercise. http://www.webmd.com/fitness-exercise/guide/the-top-6-exercise-excuses-and-how-to-beat-them. Published April 11, 2012. Accessed May 19, 2015.
3 Fortune 500. “5 hallmarks of successful corporate wellness programs.” http://fortune.com/2015/04/13/corporate-wellness/. Published April 13, 2015. Accessed May 19, 2015.
4 Dynamic Chiropractic. How to start a wellness program with local businesses. http://www.dynamicchiropractic.com/mpacms/dc/article.php?id=44211. Published March 29, 1991. Accessed May 19, 2015.