Worker welfare and well-being has become more important in recent times especially with regards to long term health, fewer accidents and absenteeism. Project7 believe that correct breaks and working conditions are one way we can ensure the wellbeing of our workforce, however Dennis McNamara and Sona Salami from our commercial team, have been taking this a step further and exploring the benefits of yoga on health and well-being on site. Here is what they have found:


"My first six months at Project7 has been an intense learning curve. As a company we have been asked to carry out the transitions of the London Stadium from a football pitch to a concert arena, an athletic arena and then back into a football stadium. All this within short time spans and under a lot of pressure as there is no flexibility on the deadline. However, amongst all the hard work, those of us working at the stadium are often fortunate to experience the real buzz of being at one of the greatest live venues in the world. Many of us got to see the Rolling Stones, Jay Z & Beyonce and the Foo Fighters. These ‘perks of the job’ do not always compensate for the pressure the project demands at the London Stadium and this year Project7 have been investigating other ways of reducing and coping with the stress, as well as engineering a positive attitude."
This has included the introduction of our very own yoga and wellbeing guru – Sona Salami. Having worked on high pressure and high-profile projects before (including The Tower of London, Hampton Court and Somerset House), I understand the importance of a company taking an active interest in their employees mental and physical wellbeing. Subsequently, when Sona offered her expertise to assist everyone (MACE and LS185 employees as well as our own), with some gentle yoga/stress relieving exercise, we were surprised at the level of interest. Some of the large pioneering companies already have such workshops that engage in the wellbeing and health of their staff. I am proud that Project7 and the PHD Group are actively supporting this approach. I know that LS185, E20 and other companies involved at the London Stadium have expressed an interest in Sona offering them the same opportunity in the future. As the great American physician Robert C Peale once said: “The best and most efficient pharmacy is within your own system.” Look after it and it will look after you.


"Dennis and I talk quite a bit about H&S and the team’s well-being. Especially on a construction site, as Dennis says, there’s so much focus on safety but little on health. Because of that we think that keeping employees safe is no longer enough and we wanted to go further than bare minimum of normal provision. On the back of those conversations the yoga sessions for the office here at the London Stadium were born. We have done 5 sessions so far and I believe with the growing demand we can offer two sessions per week. Everyone in the office attends including the Project7 team, MH& guys, Mace / LS185, even Garry from Balfour Beatty when he’s around. We’ve had some fantastic feedback, and everyone’s delighted about their own progress. Some feel less tension in their body, suppler, and others express how they feel more calm and sharp and less swayed by the pressure of work that we sometimes experience here. One reported sleeping better. I am personally observing a better rapport between the Project 7 and Mace team and a more relaxed and trusting atmosphere in the office. This is a fantastic beginning as it ultimately translates into how we make a better business together."


"Each session is created around yoga in a chair, posture and how breathing exercises and mediation can help reduce stress and increase mental sharpness / focus." The sessions entail:
  • simple stretching poses that can be done in the chair to release tension and become supple
  • core work (literally toning the belly and energizing the body; or in other words: no fire, no life)
  • posture - how to stand well (being grounded, and for balance and confidence)
  • how to sit well (ergonomically) in front of the PC without developing a hunchback.
  • breathing practices to utilize the whole trunk when breathing and increase the lungs’ capacity
  • simple meditation practices to increase awareness, to induce calm and alertness


"I believe the more balanced we feel in our physical and mental bodies the better relationship we have with ourselves. We are then able to reach out to others, if it’s at home with our families, our boss or client, and build solid (working) relationships that in return become the pillars of any successful business and happy personal life. And that kind of well-being doesn’t just come to us: happiness is an inside job."