Many companies actively encourage a healthy working culture, but this is often easier said than done in traditional sedentary office environments. So what can offices do to minimise the effects of our sedentary habits and take a more active approach to wellbeing at work?

Below are some top tops for a healthier workplace, with advice from John Thompson, CEO at User Replay, a Digital Customer Experience Management Business.

  1. Get out more
Simply taking a walk, or going for a run in one of your breaks can help you easily add activity to your day. Getting outside has the added advantages of moving you away from your screen and into the sunlight, which can help clear your head and make you more productive. As John has experienced; “Many of the User Replay team go out for a run at lunchtime, and I encourage everyone to take even small steps to increasing their mobility while they are in the office.”
  1. Walk and talk
If you can’t get out, walking around while making phone calls or when you are having routine meetings with colleagues can be easy ways to add more activity in your day. Thompson encourages his staff to do so and explains, “I genuinely believe there are both health and performance benefits in being more active around the office whenever you can.”
  1. Take a stand
If getting away from your desk is too much to ask, you could look into technologies such as sit-stand desks. Thompson himself was an early adopter, having originally used products from Ergotron as part of a healthy regime. Thompson estimates that he spends half the time that he is at his desk standing, equating to around one third of his total working day. Standing desks can also benefit those who spend a long time in the car, either for work, or on their commute, or for those with poor sitting posture.
  1. Get more done
There is a strong link between productivity and being more mobile. Studies show that investment in ergonomic furniture leads to an 18% increase in productivity, more so when using dual monitors. Productivity not only benefits employers, but employees as more tasks are completed to a better quality within the working day, reducing workplace stress.
  1. Engage
Standing more in the office can also help you feel more involved, for example taking the time to walk and talk to colleagues rather than emailing them. As Thompson said, “I feel more engaged in what is going on around the office, and I have also noticed that my energy levels remain good throughout the day. Sitting down far less plays a huge part in creating these important effects.”

An active office environment delivers long term benefits, and those that make a commitment to move and stand more, feel better and work more effectively. As According to Thompson, “Getting out of the sitting habit is something that everyone who works in an office environment should strongly consider.”

Whether it’s long-term health benefits that are important to you, or just having more energy and focus during your time in the office, something as simple as standing up can have a dramatic and lasting impact.

By Betsey Banker, Vertical Wellness Manager, Ergotron, Inc.