Incorporating Workout Space into Building Designs
In the late twentieth century, it was considered customary for design professionals and construction workers to work entirely separate. Architects and engineers would design building layouts through their professional trade organizations and then pass the final designs to contractors and construction would begin. The two were separate entities within their own fields and rarely collaborated together in the construction of buildings. In today’s ever evolving economy, it is more common and almost expected for the two to work together. Design-build construction methods exist when the designer and constructor are one entity or work on the same team rather than being hired separately by the owner.
This means that with today’s technologically advanced resources, designers and contractors can work together to create more innovative and state-of-the-art building layouts that lay the foundation for future trends and can enact standards to be followed for future conceptions.
Building On-Site Fitness Facilities for Employees
One corporate level trend that’s starting to become more of a requirement in building construction is on-site fitness clubs.
HealthFitness, a national health management program that provides fitness access to corporate employees, states that 1 in 5 of Fortune 100 companies work with HealthFitness to provide its employees with gym access or personal health guidance. The company’s client base ranges from technology to health care to manufacturing and others.
One particular company that has recognized the benefits behind corporate fitness programs is Verizon Wireless. The company estimates that 13,000 employees (42% of the company) are opted in to pay $15 per month to have access to one of multiple 3,500 square foot on-site fitness facilities. Verizon has seen reductions in absenteeism, reductions in health care costs, and believes it to be a profitable investment.
According to a 2008 survey by the National Opinion Research Center at the University of Chicago, 67% of employers are concerned about the medical costs associated with obesity and 73% of employers believe that weight management programs are effective. The same survey found that 8 out of 10 employees believe weight management programs belong at work.
Investing in Fitness Now Will Accumulate Profits Later
Research has shown multiple benefits behind corporate fitness or wellness programs. Whether it’s on-site gym facilities or on-hand personal trainers and fitness counselors, the expected rate of return for wellness programs suggest a $3 to $6 cost savings per $1 invested. Lower overall healthcare costs and reduced employee absenteeism account for monetary benefits, while improved employee morale and increased work-place efficiency also add value to the investment.
Current law permits tax deductions for on-site workout facilities and excludes employees from paying taxes for the additional service. In 2007, the Senate proposed the Workplace Health Improvement Program Act (WHIP) to Congress that would have allowed off-site workout facilities to also be eligible for tax deductions. However in 2011, the proposal failed and leaves the current law at only on-site facilities being tax deductable.
It’s A Mainstream Move
Corporate fitness programs are steadily becoming a standard for health-conscious and employee-focused businesses. With all the hype of getting in shape and being healthy in today’s advertising and marketing initiatives, it’s no surprise that corporations want to get involved and reap the benefits behind it as well.
Fitness Equipment Space Requirements
When it comes to constructing building designs, it’s important for both the architects and contractors to leave space for a potential fitness facility. While the buyer or owner may not highlight an interest up front for such a space, explaining the potential to them may be well worth the excess planning. Once the decision has been made to create a space for a fitness area, contact FitRev’s fitness equipment experts for custom recommendations and floor plans that meet each of your distinctive needs.