Ways to Stay Well in the Workplace | Best Workplace wellness ideas

Created by Elly McGuinness

Last Updated: June 13, 2017

CATEGORIES: Holistic Health

Are you an office worker or employer who is looking for some workplace wellness ideas? Here are some simple tips to help you feel better, both mentally and physically.

(This post includes affiliate links for which I may earn a commission at no extra cost to you should you make a purchase)

Take breaks, and plenty of them

Many careers in the modern world involve lengthy periods of sitting at a desk. Adding to this, you’ll find yourself in a similar position if you are driving to and from work, and everywhere else that you go. The potential negative effects of prolonged sitting can range from raised blood pressure and excess abdominal fat to chronic lower back and hip pain.

Stop for at least 5-10 minutes every hour and don’t feel bad for doing so.  Overall you should find you’re more alert and productive throughout the day.  Do a few simple stretches or go for a short walk during your breaks, to get your body into a different position.

If you have a tendency to work non-stop, set an alarm on your phone to remind you to get up each hour.  Ultimately, just get out of your chair!

Drink plenty of water

This will help your brain to stay alert and will reduce the likelihood of making poor nutrition choices throughout the day.  It also helps you to put the first point into action. If you’re drinking enough water you will need to get up for bathroom breaks regularly throughout the day!

workplace wellness ideas-drink plenty of water-fresh glasses of water with lime

Workstation set-up

Consider setting up a sit-stand workstation so your body doesn’t remain in a fixed seated position all day.  Get it set up professionally to ensure everything is at the right level for optimal posture.

Go outside!

During at least one of your breaks during the day, go for a walk outside. Consider also doing this before and/or after work. Sunshine is important for serotonin regulation to help you feel good, as well vitamin D production.

Take it a step further and take a walk in nature if you can. If you are an employer looking for employee wellness ideas, consider locking the office for 30 minutes each day to help your employees implement this step!

Do the ‘palms up’ posture

Aim to regularly incorporate the ‘palms up’ posture into your day. This can help get you away from being in a forward slouching posture that is conducive to tight shoulders and neck muscles. If your hands are on a keyboard, you can keep your forearms on your desk, but just turn your palms so they are facing upwards.

Maybe you can close your eyes for a minute and focus on breathing while you do this, as a bit of a ‘mental time out’. Try to find other opportunities during your day to turn your palms up (or face forward if you are standing up).

Eat healthy snacks

Plan ahead to eat healthy snacks such as fruit, vegetable sticks, hummus, nuts, seeds, boiled eggs, and even dark chocolate. This will help reduce the need to rush to the vending machine or cookie jar at 3 pm each day. If you are an employer looking for workplace wellness ideas, consider stocking some of these healthy snacks for your workers.

Incidental exercise

If walking or biking to work is not an option for you, consider parking a few blocks away. This will help stretch out your legs and help refresh your mind. This blog post covers other ideas for incidental exercise.

Specific exercise choices

Take up Pilates or yoga on a regular basis.  Both of these classes teach awareness of posture and activation of the ‘core’ muscles.  This can help transfer to increased attentiveness to posture while you are sitting down.

For employers looking for workplace wellness ideas, consider getting an instructor in for a 30 minute class once per week.  This can help boost energy levels, morale, and productivity in the workplace.

Workplace wellness challenges

There are a number of companies offering this service.  See what you can find on google or sit down as a work team and brainstorm ideas that will get everyone excited. Some workplace wellness challenges that other companies have adopted include:

  • ‘Biggest loser’ team challenges
  • Steps challenge. Buy every employee a pedometer and easily track the number of steps each worker covers each day
  • Entering an event, such as a 5km walk or run as a corporate team. Get a health and fitness professional to put together a plan for the team leading up to the event

The workplace wellness ideas you adopt can be interesting and fun.  They can also have a huge impact on productivity, as well as enjoyment of the work environment.

What are you doing for wellness in the workplace? Ideas such as the ones listed in this post can be simple, cost-effective, and fun. I’d love to hear about what your workplace is doing – just leave a comment in the box below!

Sometimes workers need specific health tips related to their job role. Check out these top health tips for night shift workers.

For more online fitness advice, check out my physical fitness blog category. Holistic health and fitness articles can be found here.

Disclaimer: This article contains affiliate links. This means that if you make a booking and/or purchase after clicking on one of these links then I may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. Thank you for supporting my site and helping me make it the best holistic health and fitness resource on the internet!

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Elly McGuinness


  1. Bill Downing

    Hi Elly,

    Many thanks for the tips which I found to be helpful, easy to implement and immediately beneficial. I particularly liked the tip on the sit-stand desk which I would recommend to everyone. I invested in a stand up desk recently which has helped to relieve some lower back pain that I had.

    Thanks again.



    • Elly

      Hi Bill, thanks for your comment and glad to hear that you’ve experienced the benefits of using a sit-stand desk:)


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