Online Program

Thinking on Your Feet Can Be Productive

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Gregory Garrett, Department of Environmental & Occupational Health, Texas A&M School of Public Health, College Station, TX
Mark Benden, PhD, CPE, Department of Environmental & Occupational Health, Texas A&M School of Public Health, College Station, TX
Increased sitting time in office workers has been proven to incur negative long-term health effects and it is important for public health professionals to address the health benefits realized by decreasing sedentary behavior. Many office workers are spending up to 90% of their workday seated and employers are looking to stand capable desks as a way to increase physical activity throughout the day. Unfortunately employers are concerned that the benefits associated with the use of these devices may not offset the initial cost of procurement.  Quantitative productivity data was collected daily over a contiguous 6 month period, March 2013 through August 2013, on participants (N = 167) in a call center within a national health promotion company. This study analyzed objective measures of productivity over time between groups of stand capable desks users and a seated comparison group. The analysis showed that users of stand capable desks were significantly more productive than their seated counterparts on a daily basis (p = .015). Further, results showed that stand capable desk users consistently outperformed their seated counterparts (~43%) over the 6-month time period. This study is the first with objective productivity measurements and a comparison group to demonstrate that the introduction of sit-stand workstations can substantially increase office worker productivity.  Additional studies to determine behavioral modifications to increase long-term sustainability and the cognitive impact of increased physical activity on productivity with stand capable desk usage are ongoing.

Learning Areas:

Occupational health and safety

Learning Objectives:
Discuss the importance of sit-stand workstations on decreasing sedentary behavior Explain the need for sit-stand desks within certain office settings Evaluate the effects of standing on productivity within an office or call center environment

Keyword(s): Workplace, Occupational Health and Safety

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have been the recipient of several industry grants focusing on sit-stand workstation research. These research grants have focused specifically on the areas of behavioral interventions that decrease sedentary behavior, the cognitive effects of standing, and the impact of increased standing on productivity.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.