Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Coming to an Office Space near you. Treadmill Desks.

Woah. All this new information about the health risks for people who sit too much is striking.  Apparently if you sit around a lot either at work or at home (or both) there are some substantial health risks.  Now that alone isn't news, but what is interesting is that even if you exercise regularly when you aren't sitting, it doesn't offset the risk factor from sitting too much.  Lots of stories on the subject out there.. Here is one from American Council on Science and Health..  "Get up and shake that thing!" Prolonged sitting poses health threat.     

New studies supply some confirmation that whether you're overweight or in shape, a sedentary lifestyle can cut years off your life, even if you work out multiple times a week, and whether you’re overweight or trim. Last year, an American Cancer Society study of 123,000 Americans found that men who sat more than six hours per day in their leisure time had a 20 percent higher death rate than those who spent less than three leisure hours sitting down. The findings were worse for women: more than six hours of sedentary leisure time equated to a 40 percent higher death rate.

Currently I have one of those jobs where people tend to sit at their desk answering e-mails and working on the computer or listening in on conference calls or going to meetings, and driving from one site to another.  I really enjoy the job, but I have never liked sitting around much.  I'm too fidgety and ADD to sit in one place for very long.  I raise the adjustable desktop in the cube so I can stand up while on the PC and I take short walks around the office every so often.  Most my career has been spent in factories where your desk was just a place to set your coat and lunch and occasionally sit down to catch up on e-mails or file a report but if you sat at your desk too much you were a slackass out of touch with what was happening on the floor and no one needs a boat anchor like that around.  Sitting too much was not an option and that was fine with me.  

That's why this little tidbit from the end of the story caught my attention..

But experts believe there is a solution for sedentary office workers. Simply put, finding even the smallest of ways to move around during the workday can improve your outcome. The Mayo Clinic’s Dr. James Levine, for example, showed The New York Times reporter James Vlahos a human resources staffing agency in which many of the employees worked on treadmill desks, thus moving away from the “chair-based lifestyle.”
A treadmill desk.. How cool is that? Heck, companies are paying so much for employee health insurance costs there might even be a business case for treadmill desks for the Office Space workers. But I know what would happen. The Libertarian/Tea Party guy on the staff would raise holy hell that its a violation of his civil rights to be coerced to walk on a treadmill while working at the desk. Maybe Obamacare has some super sekrit "life panels" to go along with the well known death panels?

1 comment:

  1. Treadmill desks are great units to have in your business establishment or even in your own home office. Just wondering if they are cost-effective too. Thanks for sharing!