Keep Your Meeting Attendees Healthy and Active

Provide movement, healthy foods and alternatives to sitting at your event.

Planning an event that is full of nutritious foods, movement, activity and ample downtime will not only make health-conscious attendees happy—it will also boost engagement and networking at your meeting.

Mealtime  = Time to Refuel

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day—so make it a healthy one. Eating a nutritious breakfast can help improve concentration and performance, lower cholesterol levels, and improve strength and endurance needed for physical activities.

Incorporating healthy snacks throughout the day will keep your meeting moving and provide a serving of productivity for attendees. For lunches and dinners, consider incorporating healthy options like fatty fish (tuna or salmon), whole grains and nuts.

Say ‘No’ to Traditional Seating

If guests will be listening to speakers or sitting at conference-type tables, give them seating options conducive to good posture.

Tom Condon is creative director of TCondon LLC,which specializes in tradeshow, conference and showroom design for Steelcase, a workplace-furniture innovation leader and Marriott International partner. He’s a “big fan” of the Gesture Chair, which adapts “to support the many ways that we all position our bodies while using our devices. In addition, it has a unique feature that allows the arms to pivot in and support our natural position when using smaller devices like a smartphone.”

We’ve all heard that excessive sitting, in general, is bad. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found prolonged sitting to be associated with premature mortality, obesity and chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes and cancer.

Standing desks and tables provide alternatives to sitting.

Bring Movement Into the Meeting Experience

Meetings aren’t all about producing, learning and generating ideas—they also involve having fun and meeting new people. For those reasons, build in some time for engaging activities that require movement.

Reach out to—and bring in—a local yoga or Zumba instructor to teach a class for event attendees. Schedule activities such as scavenger hunts, off-site mini-golfing trips or hikes (depending on where the event is hosted) for attendees.

 

Built-In Breaks Are Beneficial

Build downtime into the event agenda. Breaks let attendees rest, catch up with personal business, speak to family, explore or work out—all of which will make them more attentive during sessions, meetings, brainstorms and networking events.