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4.04 Which is Better - Sitting or Standing at Your Workstation?

Wednesday, April 3, 2013
9:30 AM-10:30 AM
Track: Council/Industry Specific
Format: General Presentation
Organization: IFMA
Knowledge Level: 100 level
Session Description: Researchers suggest the increasing rate of obesity in America is associated with our sedentary lifestyles.  On average, individuals sit for 14 hours and 39 minutes per day, with most of the time spent at work.  Additionally, most individuals are considered physically inactive. Sixty percent of individuals perform less than 2.5 hours of physical activity per week.  So what can be done to address this problem?   

Since the majority of the day is spent sitting at work, researchers recommend performing physical activity at work to help address the growing obesity problem.  In addition to recommending the standing-only meeting or walking to a co-worker's office to talk face-to-face instead of over email, the activity could include using a standing workstation. The simple act of standing will increase energy expenditure and will promote weight loss. The caloric expenditure of standing for up to three hours per day could be equivalent to running three miles.  However, it is important to understand the health consequences of prolonged standing prior to proceeding with these recommendations.

This session will address both the benefits and consequences of prolonged sitting and standing, and will recommend an action plan to accommodate both activities.

Learning Objectives:
  • Discuss the relationship between prolonged sitting and obesity.
  • Recognize the health consequences associated with prolonged sitting and prolonged standing.
  • Acquire guidelines for sit and stand workstations.
  • Learn how to design the workplace for active movement while sitting and standing.
  •     Presentation


    James Mallon, B.S., M.S., M.B.A., CPE
    Humantech, Inc.
    Executive Vice President

    James Mallon, Executive Vice President and Ergonomics Engineer for Humantech, has experience in the automotive, aerospace, rubber, and service industries, implementing world class improvement processes. His most recent client engagements include Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Genie Industries, and The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company. James received his Bachelor of Science degree in Kinesiology and Master of Science degree from Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia. He also completed a Master of Business Administration degree at the Richard Ivey School of Business, University of Western Ontario, in London, Ontario. James has achieved recognition as a Certified Professional Ergonomist (CPE). He is also is a member of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society and the American Society of Safety Engineers.

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