Burnout is an issue in the modern world, with annual costs to society estimated at more than $136 billion. Physical activity can reduce the risk of burnout, defined as a severe and persistent form of fatigue that occurs after a long period of work stress.
Options that reduce professional burnout are good news for employers. Fitness pros who want to promote corporate wellness can share the following study with business owners to highlight the benefits of onsite fitness programs.
A research review published recently in the Journal of Occupational Health found moderately strong evidence that physical activity can reduce burnout incidence. Strenuous physical activity once or twice a week was found to be the most effective buffer against burnout, particularly for workers with sedentary jobs. The mechanisms for why this is true are not yet clear, but physical activity benefits both mind and body.
While studies confirm that physical activity can reduce burnout, more research is needed to identify specific intensity, duration, frequency and exercise “dose,” as well as the underlying mechanisms for why physical activity is helpful. In the meantime, workers can stave off negative consequences from work stress by getting active.