Corporate Wellness: Physical Well-Being vs. Workplace Well-Being Programs

Your physical well-being – drives your overall well-being or lack of it. Your workforce is made up of many humans, all with varying levels of physical well-being. If all your humans are not working towards the same overall goal, you are not likely to achieve it. And if they aren’t feeling 100%, they certainly cannot contribute 100%. Worse yet, if they are outright feeling sick, your company is essentially pulling dead weight, rather than being fueled by a thriving team.

Why Physical Well-Being is the Crux of Your Overall Well-Being

At BreakWell, we focus on the overall well-being of the individuals on your team because this greatly impacts your overall well-being as a team. Our epitome of well-being includes 8 pillars: physical, mental, emotional, social, career, financial, safety, and community. These pillars are intertwined – each impacting the other. They cannot be compartmentalized and therefore need to all be considered as you seek overall well-being.

Physical well-being serves as the foundation of the other pillars because your movement, diet, sleep and hydration impact your mental, emotional, social, professional, financial, safety and communal capacities.

In addition to affecting each of your pillars separately, your physical well-being imposes a ripple effect.

For example, nearly one in three people with a long-term physical health condition also has a mental health problem, most often depression or anxiety (Mental Health Foundation).

If you’re not feeling good physically and mentally, you may lack confidence and excitement. If you’re lacking confidence and excitement, you may become less social and less productive in your workplace. You may become less concerned about your finances or community – and even feel like you are compromising your safety when you do go out.

Covid has been a testimony to this serious ripple effect of one well-being pillar on all the others.

Address More Than Just Physical Wellness to Save Your Business’ Bottom Line

Physical wellness has evolved over the years.

As outlined in this infographic, before World War I, only a few companies invested in the physical health of their employees. After World War II, companies began to pay for employees’ healthcare, but mostly for absence and injury prevention. In the mid-1970s, businesses expanded healthcare to include family and mental health problems. Later in 2006, business owners witnessed the first patented well-being assessment. And the concept of wellness has continued to evolve.

But to us, wellness feels more like a current state. Well-being feels more ongoing or long-term. Well-being is our goal for you.

Too commonly, workplace wellness programs are short-lived workplace solutions intended to primarily promote employee health and fitness. An EAP. An online training series. An online wellness hub. A gym discount. If you’re more evolved, it may include fitness classes or a healthy eating challenge.

On the other hand, workplace well-being is a holistic approach to improving your employees’ long-term emotional, financial and physical health and happiness. This holistic well-being approach will help reduce turnover, increase engagement and improve your business’ bottom line – while nurturing happy employees who appreciate the environment you’ve created.

When you apply a holistic approach through workplace well-being, you still address fitness and activity for the physical pillar. But you also address eating well, getting enough sleep and drinking enough water. When you help employees improve these factors, you help reduce their risk for chronic health conditions, which will improve their attendance, performance and attitude. Your employees will feel less stressed and more energetic, boosting overall morale.

If your business currently offers gym discounts and an online wellness portal, you don’t have to abandon those. But as you take it a step further and include diet, sleep and hydration, employees will become more engaged in all that you’re offering and doing.

What does a step further look like? 

Physical well-being initiatives could include steps challenges, nutrition webinars, Health Risk Assessments (HRAs), yoga classes, and on-site massages to name a few.

Contrary to how it may seem, offering more comprehensive workplace well-being programs can actually save you time, money and of course, turnover.

Are you ready to take a fresh look at your employees’ physical well-being and other needs so your business can experience healthy growth?

Schedule your free call with BreakWell today at this link.

Contributing Co-Authors: Tara Kraus & Natalie Gensits


Skip to content