We know that a growing number of people living with cancer are of working age, and over 70% of adults are employed and spend a large proportion of their time in the workplace. We also know that a healthy working environment can have a positive impact on health and help with long-term problems, such as cancer. So we’ve joined forces with Brunel University to take part in an exciting research study to understand more about how to develop a healthy working environment by implementing sit-stand workstations within the workplace, and evaluating their impact on physical activity and overall health levels.
Sit-stand workstations are height-adjustable desks, which can be moved up and down to allow you to sit or stand during the working day. These unconventional desks can be used to reduce prolonged sitting in the workplace. Office workers sit for over two thirds of the working day, which is linked to poor health outcomes, regardless of how active people are outside of work.
Thirty employees from Macmillan and Public Health England are taking part in the study and are being analysed at various time points to see how physically active they are. The study is made up of three different groups: one control group that continue to use their normal desk and two groups that receive a sit-stand workstation, one of which also receives additional support to use it.
This study is the first of its kind to look at the long-term effects of sit-stand workstations and is taking place over a period of 13 months. The study kicked off in October 2014 so we look forward to seeing the results at the end of 2015. The findings from this study could radically change understanding of health in the workplace and help us to better support people affected by cancer, so watch this space…