Workplace sitting and height-adjustable workstations: a randomized controlled trial

Neuhaus, Maike, Healy, Genevieve N., Dunstan, David W., Owen, Neville and Eakin, Elizabeth G. (2014) Workplace sitting and height-adjustable workstations: a randomized controlled trial. American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 46 1: 30-40. doi:10.1016/j.amepre.2013.09.009

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Author Neuhaus, Maike
Healy, Genevieve N.
Dunstan, David W.
Owen, Neville
Eakin, Elizabeth G.
Title Workplace sitting and height-adjustable workstations: a randomized controlled trial
Journal name American Journal of Preventive Medicine   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0749-3797
Publication date 2014-01-01
Year available 2013
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1016/j.amepre.2013.09.009
Open Access Status File (Author Post-print)
Volume 46
Issue 1
Start page 30
End page 40
Total pages 11
Place of publication New York, United States
Publisher Elsevier
Language eng
Subject 2713 Epidemiology
2739 Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
Abstract Background Desk-based office employees sit for most of their working day. To address excessive sitting as a newly identified health risk, best practice frameworks suggest a multi-component approach. However, these approaches are resource intensive and knowledge about their impact is limited. Purpose To compare the efficacy of a multi-component intervention to reduce workplace sitting time, to a height-adjustable workstations-only intervention, and to a comparison group (usual practice). Design Three-arm quasi-randomized controlled trial in three separate administrative units of the University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia. Data were collected between January and June 2012 and analyzed the same year. Setting/participants Desk-based office workers aged 20-65 (multi-component intervention, n=16; workstations-only, n=14; comparison, n=14). Intervention The multi-component intervention comprised installation of height-adjustable workstations and organizational-level (management consultation, staff education, manager e-mails to staff) and individual-level (face-to-face coaching, telephone support) elements. Main outcome measures Workplace sitting time (minutes/8-hour workday) assessed objectively via activPAL3 devices worn for 7 days at baseline and 3 months (end-of-intervention) . Results At baseline, the mean proportion of workplace sitting time was approximately 77% across all groups (multi-component group 366 minutes/8 hours [SD=49]; workstations-only group 373 minutes/8 hours [SD=36], comparison 365 minutes/8 hours [SD=54]). Following intervention and relative to the comparison group, workplace sitting time in the multi-component group was reduced by 89 minutes/8-hour workday (95% CI=-130, -47 minutes; p<0.001) and 33 minutes in the workstations-only group (95% CI=-74, 7 minutes, p=0.285). Conclusions A multi-component intervention was successful in reducing workplace sitting. These findings may have important practical and financial implications for workplaces targeting sitting time reductions. Clinical Trial Registration Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry 00363297
Keyword Public, Environmental & Occupational Health
Medicine, General & Internal
Public, Environmental & Occupational Health
General & Internal Medicine
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ
Additional Notes Published online 17 December 2013

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2014 Collection
School of Public Health Publications
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