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Pilot Programme Reveals Health Benefits Of Four-Day Work Week Among Spanish Workers

The participants were reported to use the long weekends to inculcate better lifestyle habits such as resting well, eating homemade food and practising sports by an independent commission of health and social science experts who evaluated the study

Photo Credit : India Picture Budget,

A recently conducted pilot programme in Spain sheds light on the health benefits of a four-day workweek for Spanish workers in the coastal city of Valencia with around 800,000 residents (Spain's third-largest). The workers experienced lower levels of stress while reducing fuel emissions and benefiting children as parents sought a work-life balance. 

The pilot programme scheduled local holidays to fall on four consecutive Mondays between April 10 and May 7 2023. 360,000 people were under the purview of the pilot study. The participants were reported to use the long weekends to inculcate better lifestyle habits such as resting well, eating homemade food and practising sports by an independent commission of health and social science experts who evaluated the study.

The data from the report added an improvement in self-perceived health status and positive feelings regarding personal satisfaction, mood, happiness and tiredness. The city reported better air quality due to a drop in the number of motor vehicles which lead to less nitrogen dioxide emission on the four Mondays during the programme's tenure according to the city's daily emissions measurements. It further added that the use of tobacco and alcohol increased in the aforementioned period. 

The commission said that a majority of the people surveyed mentioned positive impact of the four-day work week on their lives. The people stated that they were more likely to to read, study, watch films and pursue hobbies like photography, music or painting. However, the percentage of this group of people has not been specified. 

The hospitality and tourism sectors served more customers while the retailers reported a dip in sales and emergency medical services may have been hampered as the health workforce took time off due to the long weekend. 

The then ruling coalition of progressive, green and regionalist parties in Valencia, the left-wing Compromis designed the project. 

The Spanish government had launched a similar two-year project that focused on small and medium-sized industrial companies nationwide last year.



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