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As people’s personal values are developing and they become more mindful in their personal lives, their expectations for meetings and conferences are changing as well.

Taking a closer look to SDG 3 –  “Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages” – we can safely say that wellbeing activities for conferences are no longer just a nice-to-have, and the events industry needs to contribute to meeting the global goals through creative and impactful initiatives, so are some ideas of how you can support the SDG3 with your events

Walk and Talk

Conferences involve a lot of sitting. That’s not good for the spine, blood circulation and it increases the risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and more. It’s not good for the mind, either: sedentary behavior thins the medial temporal lobe in the brain, which is involved in in-memory processing. Walking meetings are a powerful way to change the context from a traditional, overfamiliar learning setting. They’re also an opportunity to stay on task while keeping moving. A walking meeting works best with the right facilitation: for example, with a clear task and set time-frame. Try replacing the group breakout discussions you’d normally have around a table with a walking conversation with the same participants. Alternatively, begin the plenary with an opportunity to walk and talk over the achievements of the day.

Smoothie Bikes

Smoothie bikes are an ingenious combination of exercise and a well-earned treat at the end; delivering a boost of vitamins and minerals, you can ramp up the health benefits by integrating a fun workout with this idea. Simply load up the blender with a combo that your attendee loves, get them to jump onto the bike, start pedaling, and keep going until the smoothie is ready. It’s a great participatory and attention-grabbing activity, particularly for trade shows and festivals. If you have more than one at your event, you could also inspire some healthy competition between individuals.

Quiet Room

This one is almost the inverse of activity: a quiet room away from the hustle and bustle of a busy event. To achieve this, it should not be too close to the main entrance or a coffee break space, and should never be a corner of a corridor or another room: there must be a door.

A space like this should always be provided to support neurodiverse attendees. But a quiet zone can provide a necessary haven for anyone struggling with feeling overwhelmed or finding the atmosphere stressful. Space should be provided with comfortable seating, low lighting, and blankets if the weather is cool. Don’t feel the need to supply activities for this space. Instead, offer abstract artwork on the walls, and noise-canceling headphones (not to play music, but to block out external noise and offer a sense of security).

Stretch Breaks

Movements increase energy, improve memory and productivity. Instead of coffee breaks or afternoon desserts, offer a fresh and healthy approach for attendees to re-energize.

Allow short stretch routines that can be carried on in the conference room in between speakers or breakout sessions, focusing on different areas of the body each time giving your attendees ways to relieve conference stress and fatigue.