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An e-health intervention designed to increase workday energy expenditure by reducing prolonged occupational sitting habits


Pedersen, SJ and Cooley, PD and Mainsbridge, C, An e-health intervention designed to increase workday energy expenditure by reducing prolonged occupational sitting habits, Work, 49 pp. 289-295. ISSN 1051-9815 (2014) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2013 IOS Press and the authors

DOI: doi:10.3233/WOR-131644


Background: Desk-based employees face multiple workplace health hazards such as insufficient physical activity and prolonged sitting.

Objective: The objective of this study was to increase workday energy expenditure by interrupting prolonged occupational sitting time and introducing short-bursts of physical activity to employees' daily work habits.

Methods: Over a 13-week period participants (n = 17) in the intervention group were regularly exposed to a passive prompt delivered through their desktop computer that required them to stand up and engage in a short-burst of physical activity, while the control group (n = 17) was not exposed to this intervention. Instead, the control group continued with their normal work routine. All participants completed a pre- and post- intervention survey to estimate workplace daily energy expenditure (calories).

Results: There was a significant 2 (Group) 2 (Test) interaction, F (1, 32) = 9.26, p < 0.05. The intervention group increased the calories expended during the workday from pre-test (M = 866.29 151.40) to post-test (M = 1054.10 393.24), whereas the control group decreased calories expended during the workday from pre-test (M = 982.55 315.66) to post-test (M = 892.21 255.36).

Conclusions: An e-health intervention using a passive prompt was an effective mechanism for increasing employee work-related energy expenditure. Engaging employees in regular short-bursts of physical activity during the workday resulted in reduced sitting time, which may have long-term effects on the improvement of employee health.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:workplace health and wellbeing, sedentary behavior, employee health, physical activity, prompts, sitting
Research Division:Commerce, Management, Tourism and Services
Research Group:Human resources and industrial relations
Research Field:Occupational and workplace health and safety
Objective Division:Education and Training
Objective Group:Schools and learning environments
Objective Field:Workforce transition and employment
UTAS Author:Pedersen, SJ (Dr Scott Pedersen)
UTAS Author:Cooley, PD (Associate Professor Dean Cooley)
UTAS Author:Mainsbridge, C (Mr Casey Mainsbridge)
ID Code:87485
Year Published:2014 (online first 2013)
Web of Science® Times Cited:56
Deposited By:Education
Deposited On:2013-11-20
Last Modified:2017-11-06

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