The latest research confirms that sitting smart, when combined with standing and walking options, can have a big impact on worker wellness and productivity.
The truth is, sitting isn’t killing us. But as this paper will demonstrate, sitting in poor postures for long periods with little movement and few breaks for standing or walking can impact our health and reduce our productivity. “This isn’t just theory,” said Ken Tameling, General Manager, Seating for Steelcase. “We know from the cumulative weight of research and evidence gleaned from the workplace that these issues can have a significant negative impact on worker wellness and an organization’s bottom line. Conversely, by offering workers the information and products they need, we can have a positive impact.”
The recent research findings support the idea that movement during the day while sitting, walking or standing, is critical to maintaining wellness.
Sit, stand, walk is a specific philosophy that Steelcase uses to keep workers moving. Workplaces that embrace this philosophy provide height adjustable workstations, low speed treadmills, convenient temporary workspaces away from dedicated workstations, and healthy “Alive Seating.”
SOMETIMES YOU NEED TO TAKE A STAND
The perils of remaining in a sitting posture for long periods, day after day, are clear. The benefits of changing postures— including improved focus, engagement and wellness—are also clear. Standing at work offers a break from sitting, helps offset some of the problems that can result from prolonged sitting and ensures employees stay in motion. Given the findings of Hamilton and the others, those benefits alone are incentive for employees to spend portions of the work day standing, whether meeting in a common area or working at height- adjusted worksurfaces.
Just one hour each day spent standing can help workers burn extra calories, and maintain or renew their energy levels and focus. And worksurfaces that adjust easily from sitting to standing positions eliminate the need for workers to leave their tasks when they need a break from their chairs, keeping them more productive throughout the day.
WHY WALKING IS PLAYING A BIGGER ROLE IN THE WORKPLACE
Modern medicine continues to confirm Ramazini’s study of messengers and tailors. Motion is healthy. Steelcase has embraced this and has optimized solutions to support movement through workspaces that encourage walking meetings and that offer height adjustable worksurfaces equipped with low-speed treadmills. When used for tasks suited to standing, such meetings and workstations not only allow employees to move during the day, they enable them to keep working as they walk—a boost to productivity.
AN EFFECTIVE PRESCRIPTION FOR A HEALTHY WORK DAY
WHY SITTING IS AN IMPORTANT PART OF THE DAY