Hospitality is a fast-paced, stressful industry which often includes working long and irregular hours.
The hospitality & tourism industry includes work within hotels, restaurants, travel agencies, convention centres – even theme parks – to name a few.
While no doubt an exciting, varied, flexible and fast-paced environment, hospitality & tourism is also a high-pressure industry that can present a number of physical and psychological risks for employees. These range from physical and psychological fatigue, to stress, and musculoskeletal strain, all of which can have a debilitating effect on employees’ health and well-being.
Musculoskeletal disorders such as sprains and strains are the most common injuries in the hospitality industry.
The fast pace of work during peak periods, dealing with customers who are sometimes under the influence of drugs and alcohol may contribute to stress.
Hospitality is an industry in which business tends to be very cyclical, with peak seasons around Christmas and other public holidays, and dips in revenue during quieter periods of the year.
By its nature, this lends itself to a casual workforce, giving employers the option of taking on more staff when business is booming and reducing their workforce when there is a lull.
While this is an arrangement which can suit both parties, particularly given many of those working in hospitality are students or part-time workers, it can also be a significant source of pressure for many employees.
In some instance, long hours, often late nights contributing to fatigue, decreased sleep and inactivity are prevalent. This can be one of the biggest barriers to exercise for shift-workers in particular.
Your body is designed to move. Holding static postures may lead to unnecessary build-up of tension. Due to the nature of your job, the demands on your mental and physical well-being also require attention.
Exercise can assist in:
Your vocation is fast-paced and busy, therefore exercises that assist in decreasing stress, increase mental alertness and awareness would be suitable.
Exercise Right recommends exercise which helps you feel good, relax and feel healthier. Many people respond well to:
Exercise Right at Work
Exercise Right recommends following a simple set of stretches [hyperlink] before you start your shift, and during your working day to increase circulation and relieve tension.
Regularly stop and stretch, at least hourly (every 15 minutes is ideal), to make sure you rest and restore your muscles appropriately. Relax your neck and shoulders too; drop your arms to restore normal circulation.
Test what time works best for you
The best time of day to exercise right for night-shift workers is largely dependent on what works for you. Why not spend a week exercising before, during and after your shift and see which feels best to you. Choose the time you can be most committed to and what makes you feel best afterward.
Whatever time you choose, treat exercise as a priority and important appointment you cannot miss. Why not team up with a fellow late-night co-worker to keep you motivated.
Consult an allied health professional
If you have suffered an injury at work, Exercise Right recommends consulting an Accredited Exercise Physiologist, Accredited Exercise Scientist and a Physiotherapist. All of these professionals work together to assist in your recovery from an injury.