New research in the UK suggests that standing part of the day, rather than sitting, while working in the office may enhance performance at work and promote a sense of well-being. But no long-term health benefits were found as result of standing more.
In a study, a number of NHS staff were given new standing desks and goals for standing time, according to a BBC story.
After a year, researchers found these subjects sat less than their other colleagues by more than an hour a day.
Staff members who sat less, by using desks that also allowed them to work while standing, also said they felt less tired and more engaged.
The research team, led by Loughborough University and experts from Leicester, recruited 146 mainly sedentary NHS staff for the study
Seventy-seven formed part of an intervention group and worked at height-adjustable workstations – also known as sit-stand desks – while the remaining 69 continued with their standard desks.
During the experiment, sitting time went down by 50.62 minutes a day at three months, 64.4 minutes a day at six months, and 82.39 minutes a day at 12 months.
Those who worked at sit-stand desks also reported improvements in musculoskeletal problems, according to the research published in the British Medical Journal.
Employees who used the sit-stand desks reported being less anxious and an improved quality of life. However, but no notable changes were found for job satisfaction, cognitive function, or absence from sickness.
However, the authors of the report are uncertain about long-time health benefits from sit-stand desk use: they say more research is needed to assess such outcome.