The “Industrial Athlete” is an industrial fitness and rehabilitation service provider for the company whose employees’ normal work day in the manual material handling (MMH) world requires repetitive carrying, lifting, twisting, turning and moving, often under extreme conditions. Companies such as Cintas, reported by Report on Business Magazine as one of Canada’s Best Employers, have incorporated a new training initiative for thousands of their employees, who wash and move products such as heavy mats and uniforms, to some 800,000 businesses across North America. In an effort to reduce the risk of injuries to their service representatives on the road, and workers in the plants and distribution centers, Cintas uses the Industrial Athlete Sports Medicine Model program which includes daily warm ups (“Stretch and Flex” exercises), proper lifting and carrying training, rehabilitation, advice on nutrition, and how to achieve the all important work-life balance. For this effort, Cintas’ Workers’ Compensation premiums are 22 percent better than the industry average.
Companies that have implemented similar programs have found that employees are responsive to exercises and appreciate that getting their bodies ready for work makes good sense. So treat employees like professional athletes by respecting them as industrial athletes. This not only affects the bottom line financially, it also allows workers to lead safer, more comfortable lives on and off the job.
Contact SIRC for more information on athlete injury prevention!