Jonathan Said based at Michael Kyprianou Offices in Malta takes the lead in making his offices greener. The MK Green Initiative aims to improve people’s health whilst reducing carbon emissions. You will also find fun facts and benefits related to cycling to work and keep informed with the laws and regulations that make Malta one of the safest cycling countries within Europe.
The benefits of cycling have long been documented and proven to be very beneficial to our health. We’ve come up with an infographic that shows exactly what benefits we get from just 20 minutes of cycling to an hour or more. Cycling gives an overall sense of freedom and after just 20 minutes, your body rids itself from Cortisol - a stress hormone often preventing deep regenerative sleep.
After just 40 minutes, the blood flow and oxygen to the brain are boosted and after 45 minutes, Serotonin and Endorphins are released into the bloodstream which immensely help improve your mood. As a full hour of cycling kicks in, you're helping drastically reduce your risk of heart disease
Studies have shown that cycling to work can ease feelings of stress, depression, or anxiety. Focusing on the road while you're cycling helps develop concentration and awareness of the present moment. It gets better, because if you repeat this form of exercise 4-5 times a week, you are twice as less likely to take sick days than a couch potato!
With this green initiative, our MK Malta office is encouraging employees and colleagues to cycle to work. Jonathan Said, Chief Operations Officer (COO), does not only talk the talk, but surely walks the walk, since he regularly uses his bicycle as a means of transport to work: “I encourage all and any member of our team to go greener and use their bike to come to work. We provide space for employees to store their bikes and we also have added a degree of flexibility to their work-schedule in order to account for the extra time it may take them to come into work”.
Mr Said continues: “It’s the perfect way to keep healthy, but also reduce our carbon footprint, reducing the use of cars or other means of fuel-dependent and carbon-emitting modes of transport”. Notwithstanding these positive outcomes, the MK Team has the advantage of taking this globally, spreading this environmentally-conscious behaviour throughout their offices in different jurisdictions.
Malta has a general mandatory law prescribing to all bike riders - they must wear a helmet. Furthermore, the law obliges all adult cyclists to wear helmets in all areas at all times. Talks are underway to modify the law so that it may encourage more people to cycle, but it would cover small distances and rural areas - thus keeping the overall safety of cycling on the islands. Finland and Slovenia have similar rules, albeit not as stringent.
The MK Green Initiative is something that is easily replicable for other firms or companies. With the right attitude and mindset, as well as operative implementation to ease the transition to going green, many firms around Malta and around the globe can transcend this.
“This is part of every company’s corporate social responsibility (CSR). We want to see less carbon footprints, less traffic on the road and, very importantly, more mentally and physically healthy employees. And remember, always wear your helmet!” - Jonathan Said.