Company retreats are out-of-office group experiences meant to foster teamwork, camaraderie, and a renewed sense of purpose.
Retreats can last for a day, a weekend, or sometimes longer. While they typically feature workshops, brainstorming, and planning, corporate retreats also often include non-work activities. When planning, consider organizing a wellness company retreat — there are plenty of activities that foster physical and mental wellness, plus wellness is trendy in 2018.
Find peace of mind together with group meditation
Meditation is an inherently personal experience, as you quiet the mind to find calm from within. The inner peace fostered by a great meditation session is amplified when you learn to meditate alongside your colleagues. Group meditation enhances spiritual growth and is a great way to connect with teammates. Introduce meditation to your team at a retreat center with a mediation practice, or work with an expert to lead your group in guided meditation. You can even opt for a DIY meditation app, like Headspace.
Practice yoga together as a team
Nothing brings a team together like cat-cow poses. Yoga at a company retreat brings your entire team to their mats to work on wellness side by side. Choose an instructor accustomed to working with people with varying levels of yoga ability so every office yogi can go at his or her own pace. Giving employees the opportunity to focus on both physical and mental health in tandem and as a team is a great supportive way to focus on wellness.
Ease tension and boost energy with chair massage
Chair massage focuses on all types of wellness by benefiting the physical, mental, and emotional aspects of employee health. Massage therapists work on the neck, back, and arms to reduce pain and tension that has built up in the muscles from long desk hours and the usual stress of office life. In addition to physical benefits like increased circulation and lower blood pressure, chair massage also decreases stress and anxiety, improves mood and morale, and can encourage better sleep and relaxation at night.
Healthy competition with team sports
Company sports competitions are a great way to introduce a little healthy competition to your team’s wellness plan. Get out into the sunshine and have some fun playing volleyball, baseball, basketball, or even dodgeball (no pegging!) Corporate sports can improve teamwork and communication, and give employees an opportunity to work with colleagues in an entirely different way than they do in the office.
Chair massage and mental health
What better way to make a company retreat more enjoyable and health-focused than giving everyone a free massage? Chair massages are 10-20 minute long fully-clothed massages the benefits of which mimic those of full-body massage — improved physical and mental well-being, relaxation, and recovery.
Logistically, this might be the easiest step in coordinating a wellness company retreat, regardless of the venue. Massage therapists from Zeel’s network bring all the necessary equipment and appointment booking online takes only a few seconds.
Broaden horizons with live music
Although personal taste in music can vary widely from individual to individual, there’s actually scientific evidence that exposure to live music is a big wellness booster. Going to a concert or a live music event can help decrease the production of stress hormones in the body, which provides both physical and mental benefits. Live music also lifts the spirits and broadens the horizons, and if employees dance and sing along to the music, a concert can even become a full body workout.
Spark creativity and imagination through arts and crafts
Alongside the benefits of experiencing art, making art is also a great way to focus on employee wellness. Arts and crafts may seem like a childhood summer camp activity, but what is an office retreat if not an adult summer camp? Crafting is known to reduce stress and anxiety, increase creativity and imagination, and even exercise the brain, protecting it from burnout. Tried and true crafts projects like coloring and collage can help nurture employees’ sense of fun and playfulness. Or learn entirely new skills as a team by taking classes in something like knitting or crochet, origami, or even 3D printing.
Relax and rejuvenate in a natural environment
Take the team out of the office and away from the city to soak up the benefits of the natural world. Walks in the woods, Outward Bound-style team-building exercises, and simply breathing fresh, unfiltered air all help employees recharge in an environment very different from the average office. (Remember the sunscreen and bug spray!) Investigate the top nature retreat centers close to cities to find a good spot for your crew.
Give back as a team through community volunteering
Volunteering is a great way to bring people together as they turn their professionally-honed capabilities toward a good cause. Volunteering en masse as a company can boost emotional wellness through increased camaraderie. What’s more, employees feel better about themselves and about the companies they work for when volunteering is a part of corporate life.
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Marcy is the SVP of People and Communications at Zeel. In addition to overseeing the humans of Zeel, Marcy has written about workplace topics for more than 20 years both at Zeel and as VP of Content for Vault.com, a career information web site and publisher.