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Special Issue "Occupational Sedentary Behaviour"

A special issue of International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (ISSN 1660-4601). This special issue belongs to the section "Occupational Safety and Health".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 October 2018

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Dr. Sharon Parry

School of Physiotherapy and Exercise Science, Faculty of Health Sciences, Curtin University
Website | E-Mail
Interests: physical activity; sedentary behaviour; occupational/workplace physical activity and sedentary behaviour; work-related musculoskeletal pain/discomfort

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

In this “Technological Age”, there is a greater proportion of the workforce working in sedentary occupations. In addition, sedentary workers are also spending the majority of working hours sedentary or sitting. Recent evidence suggests that prolonged and uninterrupted sedentary time is a risk factor to all-cause mortality and many chronic diseases such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease and some forms of cancer. This risk many be independent of participation in regular physical activity. While the move from physically demanding jobs has reduced some associated health risks, it may have created a new set of health risks that needs to be addressed.

As adults spend the majority of waking hours at work, the workplace is a convenient place to, not only monitor health behaviours, but to also implement health promotion interventions. Reducing occupational sedentary behaviour, predominately occupational sitting, is increasingly being identified as a health priority. While there is a growing body of research that is exploring occupational sedentary behaviour, more research into safe sedentary thresholds, targeted interventions to reduce occupational sedentary behaviour is needed.

This Special Issue will bring together the latest research addressing the monitoring of occupational sedentary behaviour and innovative workplace interventions to reduce occupational sedentary time and consequently improve the health of sedentary workers.

Dr. Sharon Parry
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • sedentary behaviour
  • physical activity
  • occupation
  • workplace
  • sit-stand desks
  • sit-stand workstations
  • active workplace

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle Multi-Stakeholder Perspectives of Factors That Influence Contact Centre Call Agents’ Workplace Physical Activity and Sedentary Behaviour
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(7), 1484; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15071484
Received: 27 June 2018 / Revised: 5 July 2018 / Accepted: 9 July 2018 / Published: 13 July 2018
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Abstract
Contact centre call agents are highly sedentary at work, which can negatively affect cardio-metabolic health. This qualitative cross-sectional study explored factors influencing call agents’ workplace physical activity (PA) and sedentary behaviour (SB), and perspectives on strategies to help agents move more and sit
[...] Read more.
Contact centre call agents are highly sedentary at work, which can negatively affect cardio-metabolic health. This qualitative cross-sectional study explored factors influencing call agents’ workplace physical activity (PA) and sedentary behaviour (SB), and perspectives on strategies to help agents move more and sit less at work. Semi-structured interviews and focus groups with call agents (n = 20), team leaders (n = 11) and senior staff (n = 12) across four contact centres were guided by the socio-ecological model and analysed thematically. Agents offered insights into the impact of high occupational sitting and low PA on their physical and mental health, and factors influencing their motivation to move more and sit less at work. Team leaders, although pivotal in influencing behaviours, identified their own workload, and agents’ requirement to meet targets, as factors influencing their ability to promote agents to move more and sit less at work. Further, senior team leaders offered a broad organisational perspective on influential factors, including business needs and the importance of return on investment from PA and SB interventions. Unique factors, including continuous monitoring of productivity metrics and personal time, a physical connection to their workstation, and low autonomy over their working practices, seemed to limit call agents’ opportunity to move more and sit less at work. Proposed strategies included acknowledgement of PA and SB within policy and job roles, height-adjustable workstations, education and training sessions and greater interpersonal support. Additionally, measuring the impact of interventions was perceived to be key for developing a business case and enhancing organisational buy-in. Multi-level interventions embedded into current working practices appear important for the multiple stakeholders, while addressing concerns regarding productivity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Occupational Sedentary Behaviour)
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Open AccessArticle Changes in Sitting Time and Sitting Fragmentation after a Workplace Sedentary Behaviour Intervention
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(6), 1148; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15061148
Received: 4 May 2018 / Revised: 26 May 2018 / Accepted: 30 May 2018 / Published: 1 June 2018
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Abstract
Prolonged sedentary behaviour (SB) has shown to be detrimental to health. Nevertheless, population levels of SB are high and interventions to decrease SB are needed. This study aimed to explore the effect of a personalized intervention aimed at reducing SB and increasing breaks
[...] Read more.
Prolonged sedentary behaviour (SB) has shown to be detrimental to health. Nevertheless, population levels of SB are high and interventions to decrease SB are needed. This study aimed to explore the effect of a personalized intervention aimed at reducing SB and increasing breaks in SB among college employees. A pre-experimental study design was used. Participants (n = 36) were recruited at a college in Massachusetts, USA. SB was measured over 7 consecutive days using an activPAL3 accelerometer. Following baseline measures, all participants received a personalized SB consultation which focused on limiting bouts of SB >30 min, participants also received weekly follow-up e-mails. Post-intervention measures were taken after 16 weeks. Primary outcome variables were sedentary minutes/day and SB bouts >30 min. Differences between baseline and follow-up were analyzed using paired t-tests. The intervention did not change daily sedentary time (−0.48%; p > 0.05). The number of sedentary bouts >30 min decreased significantly by 0.52 bouts/day (p = 0.010). In this study, a personalized SB intervention was successful in reducing number of bouts >30 min of SB. However, daily sedentary time did not reduce significantly. These results indicate that personalized, consultation-based interventions may be effective if focused on a specific component of SB. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Occupational Sedentary Behaviour)
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Open AccessArticle The Effect of a Leisure Time Physical Activity Intervention Delivered via a Workplace: 15-Month Follow-Up Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(2), 264; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15020264
Received: 17 November 2017 / Revised: 24 January 2018 / Accepted: 31 January 2018 / Published: 4 February 2018
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Abstract
In line with recommendations from both the World Health Organization and the European Union some employers encourage workplace health promotion through physical activity (PA) facilities and leisure time PA-initiatives. The current study describes a 15-month follow-up after an 8-week workplace delivered PA-initiative, investigates
[...] Read more.
In line with recommendations from both the World Health Organization and the European Union some employers encourage workplace health promotion through physical activity (PA) facilities and leisure time PA-initiatives. The current study describes a 15-month follow-up after an 8-week workplace delivered PA-initiative, investigates if improvements in cardiovascular risk status are sustainable, and elucidates differences according to educational level. One hundred and twenty one employees (43 women) were examined before and after the 8-week PA-initiative and 94 at the 15-month follow-up. PA-levels, blood pressure, resting heart rate, lipids, glycosylated hemoglobin (HbA1c), C-reactive protein (CRP), and selected markers of inflammation were registered at baseline, immediately after the 8-week PA-initiative, and 15 months after baseline. At the end of follow-up (15-month), PA-levels—increased during the 8-week intervention—had returned to baseline values. None of the five improvements in cardiovascular markers (total cholesterol, low density lipoprotein (LDL), P-selectin, CD40Ligand (CD40L) and Monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 (MCP-1)) seen at the 8-week follow-up were sustained. At the 15-month follow-up as compared to baseline HbA1c, CRP (log) and interleukin-6 (IL-6) were reduced by 0.06 mmol/L (95% CI −0.11,−0.01), 0.25 mg/L (95% CI −0.46,−0.04) and 0.39 pg/mL (95% CI −0.75, −0.04), respectively. At baseline, there were differences in cardiovascular risk factors comparing men with low versus high levels of education. No differences in changes in outcomes between these groups of men were found during follow-up. In this study highly educated men generally have lower levels of cardiovascular risk factors, but the effect of PA on such markers in this group do not differ from the effects seen in less educated men. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Occupational Sedentary Behaviour)
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