Claims are currently being made by health experts that sitting is the new smoking in the workplace so it’s great to know that as florists we are going to live longer and healthier thanks to our chosen profession! However, it’s not quite that simple as working as a florist often means standing all day on cold, wet, and sometimes slippery surfaces. To me anti fatigue matting isn't simply a good OH&S practice, I consider it an essential piece of ‘equipment’ for every florist and anything but a luxury in our workplaces.
It surprises me to hear how many florists come in to work with us and mention that they have previously not been provided with some kind of cushion matting or insulation to stand on while working. For the layman reading this, that is almost the equivalent of you being told to sleep directly on the floor instead of a mattress at night.
We work on our feet all day so it’s not too much to ask an employer to provide some matting for you, or if you don’t feel comfortable with that, just pop down to Bunnings or Clark Rubber and grab yourself a metre or two. We use the Black Anti Fatigue Rib Foam which comes in at under $40 per meter. You can actually cut this down the length of the Matt to double your length as it is 900mm wide. This also reduces the chances of it becoming a tripping hazard as well.
Now, if you are trying to sell this idea to your boss who is known to scrimp at every opportunity and can’t bring him or herself to use the acronym OH&S, here are some key benefits that will prove anti fatigue matting is actually an investment for the business.
- It increases the staff's concentration
- It promotes better posture meaning healthier staff and less likelihood of injury
- More grip underfoot means less chance of slipping and injury
- Circulation is increased due to constant micro foot movement meaning more energy and better productivity
- Comfortable means happy, which means better design quality!
One last thing on standing. While it’s better than being in a sedentary position all day, you still need to be conscious of moving around and not just standing in the once place the whole time. Something in the store can always use a bit of a tidy up or a wipe down, so think of it as killing two birds with one stone.