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Treadmill Desks Have Employees Staying Active While They Work

Nutrition and exercise specialists at the University of Missouri have begun working at treadmill desks, giving employees a simple way to stay active while they are stuck at their desks.

"Active employees are healthy employees," said Steve Ball, an associate professor of Nutrition and exercise physiology at MU. "We've got to get people up and moving."

Studies have shown that sitting at a desk for several hours a day has some pretty negative effects on your overall health. Other research has also shown that regular exercise is often cancelled out by spending the majority of your day sitting. However, by walking at a treadmill desk at one to two miles per hour, employees can burn up to 100 calories an hour. Aside from weight loss, these employees have also become better focused at work, have better posture, experience less back stress, and have improved their overall anxiety. Some have even become more satisfied with their jobs.

The benefits to companies are obvious. Not only does a system like the treadmill desk boost office morale as a whole, it also decreases health care costs since it forces employees to address their own health issues. It also gives workers a boost in productivity and reduces the amount of sick days that are taken.

These desks, which are mechanically equipped to shift in height, can be pretty pricey. However, other, less expensive methods can be just as effective. Build your own standing desk by adding height to the legs on your existing workstation. Or, simply take a 10-minute walk at the end of every hour. This still gets you out of your chair and active, while giving you a nice little boost during a long workday.

It is important to note that the low-impact treadmill walking is not a substitute for regular workouts, but simply serves as a way for employees to gain a bit more energy during the day and help keep them healthy while they're at it.

Learn more about MU's treadmill desks by watching the video below.

Tell Us What You Think

We want to hear from you! Do you think treadmill desks would work in your office? Share your thoughts on Twitter or in the comments!

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(Photo credit: © Minerva Studio - Fotolia.com)

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