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Hum Factors. 2009 Jun;51(3):310-20.

Comparisons of musculoskeletal complaints and data entry between a sitting and a sit-stand workstation paradigm.

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Johannes-Gutenberg-Universität, Institut für Arbeits-, Sozial- und Umweltmedizin, Obere Zahlbacher Str. 67, Mainz 55131, Germany.



Seated working positions are often regarded as a cause for discomfort in the musculoskeletal system. Performing work in different working positions--that is, alternating between sitting and standing (sit-stand workstation paradigm)--could help reduce physical complaints.


The questions were whether performing office work partly in a standing position leads to reduced complaints and whether standing would change the efficiency of data entry office work.


We investigated the effect of a sit-stand workstation paradigmd during experimental data entry office work on physical and psychological complaints and data entry efficiency by conducting a randomized controlled trial with 60 male participants ages 18 to 35 years.


In this experiment, musculoskeletal complaints were reduced by a sit-stand workstation paradigm. A trend could be identified indicating a small but nonsignificant loss of efficiency in data entry while standing.


A sit-stand workstation paradigm reduces musculoskeletal complaints without considerably affecting data entry efficiency under the presented study conditions (young male participants, short duration, fixed and controlled sit-stand workstation paradigm, simulated experimental working condition).


According to the present data, implementing a sit-stand workstation paradigm can be an effective workplace health intervention to reduce musculoskeletal complaints. This experiment encourages further studies on the effectiveness of a sit-stand workstation paradigm. Experimental research and field studies that prove the reduction of complaints when introducing a sit-stand workstation paradigm in the workplace could be the basis for evidence-based recommendations regarding such interventions.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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