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Three Ways Sports Tech Can Positively Impact the Workplace

Patrick Lundgren
11.23.16
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With technology ever-changing, new platforms and products aimed at facilitating health and
wellness tracking are constantly being introduced to the consumer market. The growing popularity of wearables such as the Apple Watch and Fitbit, which monitor stress levels, heart rates and implement fitness plans, has solidified their place as a valuable tool not only in everyday life but in encouraging workplace wellness. With employees able to share their fitness levels through the accompanying apps, they encourage one another to meet their fitness goals. The latest health and sports apps even match employees from the same as well as neighboring companies to take these workouts to the next level.

Currently, over ninety-five percent of employees bring their own device to work, typically a smartphone, and over a third of them are already using a health and wellness related app to take proactive steps in increasing their own well-being. With the growth of technology for both personal and professional use, integrating tech into the workplace to positively impact the health and wellness of workers is a logical step. In fact, research shows that three out of five employees said they'd participate in workplace wellness programs if employers used digital technology to implement these initiatives.

Here are three simple ways the modern worker can utilize technology to positively impact the workplace:

Workplace Exercise Can Boost Physical and Mental Health
Utilizing health and fitness apps, individuals can find a new workout partner from within the company or nearby offices to merge their work and exercise schedule. Whether utilizing platforms to locate nearby athletes for a brisk mid-day walk or lunchtime yoga session, health and fitness apps can benefit both physical and mental health. In addition to providing a mental break, physical activity in the workplace can lead to reduced levels of anxiety and depression according to a 2014 study.

Aetna, a leading health insurance company that covers close to 23 million Americans, recently began subsidizing Apple Watches for its employees for its wellness initiatives. They are a perfect example of how companies should utilize technology to support their corporate wellness programs and create a healthier workplace.

Sports Lend Themselves to Team Building Exercise
Leveraging sports platforms can allow individuals to create sports leagues outside of normal office hours. Technology can be utilized to organize larger activities to build camaraderie amongst employees. Playing sports with coworkers is great for stepping outside of comfort zones and creating a positive, open work environment upon return to the office.

At ATLETO, we onboard all new hires by meeting with current executives to arrange a pickup game of a sport of their choice. This tradition applies to any new hire, from janitorial staff to new executives joining the ranks. The idea behind this is to arrange an activity where new employees can pick sports they are better at or more passionate about playing than the rest of the executive team. This pushes the executive staff outside of their comfort zone and leads to beneficial team-building experiences. We have found there is no better way to get to know another person than through sports.

Sweatworking is the Modern Age Networking
In addition to utilizing sports apps to arrange organized activities for building camaraderie amongst a team, they can also be used for "sweatworking" both within the company as well as with employees of others. This is a growing practice where individuals combine a workout with a professional meet and greet, making it the new power lunch with a side of endorphins. Present-day platforms have an incredible ability to connect individuals, which can also supply endless networking possibilities. You never know when your next teammate could become your next partner, client, boss or employee. Adding in an element of sports creates an environment that relieves tension to facilitate both better personal and professional relationships.

Conclusion
With the help of technology, corporate wellness initiatives can not only boost employee health, but also professional growth through stronger and new connections with the touch of a button. After all, everyone needs a dose of social sports in their life.

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