April 18: National Stress Reduction Day (Seriously!)
Despite the fact this is the deadline for filing taxes, it’s also National Stress Reduction Day. And for many Americans, this day couldn’t come soon enough.
With the anemic economy, earthquakes in Japan, rising gas prices, and Middle East turmoil, Americans have plenty to be stressful about. However, studies indicate most Americans still point to work as the leading cause of stress in their lives, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health.
One reason for this stress is simply the way many people work, standing for long periods of time, says JoAnne Boston, Market Development Manager with Crown Mats and Matting of Fremont, OH. “Anyone who stands for several hours per day knows how painful and tiring it can be. It causes feet and joints to hurt and tension throughout the body, causing what is called static stress.”
This is why Crown Mats is encouraging U.S. employers and workers to honor National Stress Reduction Day by standing up to stress. These are some of her recommends to stand up to stress and reduce static stress:
- Select and wear comfortable shoes.
- Sit down whenever possible, and take numerous short breaks at work rather than one or two long breaks.
- Walk whenever possible.
- Consider adding shoe insoles.
- Have company sponsored stretch breaks.
In addition, Boston recommends employers install antifatigue matting, which is engineered to promote blood flow, reduce tension, fatigue, pain, and stress. They work by providing a balance of softness and support to help cushion steps, reducing the amount of stress on feet, joints, and muscles.
“These steps…can really do wonders alleviating workplace stress,” she says. “[And] this is something we must think about throughout the year, not just on National Stress Reduction Day.”