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Am J Prev Med. 2012 Sep;43(3):293-7. doi: 10.1016/j.amepre.2012.05.010.

Point-of-choice prompts to reduce sitting time at work: a randomized trial.

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  • 1School of Health and Life Sciences, Glasgow Caledonian University, Glasgow, United Kingdom.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Prolonged sitting is prevalent in the workplace and is associated with adverse health markers.

PURPOSE:

Investigate the effects of point-of-choice (PoC) prompting software, on the computer used at work (PC), to reduce long uninterrupted sedentary periods and total sedentary time at work.

DESIGN:

Assessor-blinded, parallel group, active-controlled randomized trial.

SETTING/PARTICIPANTS:

A convenience sample of office workers from Glasgow, United Kingdom. Data were collected April to June 2010, and analyzed October 2010 to June 2011.

INTERVENTION:

The education group (n=14) received a brief education session on the importance of reducing long sitting periods at work. The PoC group (n=14) received the same education along with prompting software on their PC for 5 workdays, which reminded them to stand up every 30 minutes.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES:

Sitting time was measured objectively using the activPAL™ activity monitor for 5 workdays at baseline and 5 workdays during the intervention. The number and time spent sitting in events >30 minutes' duration were the main outcome measures.

RESULTS:

At baseline, participants spent 5.7±1.0 hours/day (76%±9%) of their time at work sitting. Of that time, 3.3±1.3 hours/day was spent sitting in 3.7±1.4 events >30 minutes. There was a significant difference between the groups in the change (intervention to baseline) of both the number (ANCOVA; -6.8%, p=0.014) and duration (-15.5%, p=0.007) of sitting events >30 minutes. During the intervention, compared with baseline, the PoC group reduced the number (paired t-test; -0.11 events/hour, p=0.045) and duration (-12.2%, p=0.035) of sitting events >30 minutes. However, there was no significant difference in total sitting time between groups (-4.4%, p=0.084).

CONCLUSIONS:

Point-of-choice prompting software on work computers recommending taking a break from sitting plus education is superior to education alone in reducing long uninterrupted sedentary periods at work.

TRIAL REGISTRATION:

This trial was registered at ClinicalTrials.govNCT01628861.

Copyright © 2012 American Journal of Preventive Medicine. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

PMID:
22898122
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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