Sit less and walk more a route for healthier aging and increased wellbeing
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Tweet: # sitless. Sit less and walk more- a route for healthier aging and increased wellbeing. Professor Nanette Mutrie Chair of Physical Activity for Health Director of Physical Activity for Health Research Centre PAHRC www.ed.ac.uk /education/ pahrc Dr Liz Such

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Sit less and walk more a route for healthier aging and increased wellbeing

Tweet: #sitless

Sit less and walk more-a route for healthier aging and increased wellbeing

Professor Nanette Mutrie

Chair of Physical Activity for Health

Director of Physical Activity for Health Research Centre

PAHRC www.ed.ac.uk/education/pahrc

Dr Liz Such

Lecturer in Leisure and Sport Policy


O verview
Overview

  • Background

  • Tasks involved

  • Quantitative results

  • Qualitative results

  • Conclusions


Background
Background

  • Emerging evidence that too much sitting down time is:

    • Bad for health

    • Independent of how much physical activity the person does

  • Important for ageing population and wellbeing

  • Many current jobs are sedentary


Key relevant policy areas
Key relevant policy areas

  • National Policy Framework. Two National Indicators for health:

    • Increase physical activity

    • Improve mental wellbeing

  • Vision 2020:

    • “by 2020 everyone is able to live longer healthier lives at home, or in a homely setting”

  • Social Care Bill:

    • ensuring dignity and security in old age

  • Let’s Make Scotland More Active

    • and the 2009 review of this policy


Aims of our fellowship
Aims of our Fellowship

  • Engage with the parliament workforce on

    • ‘sitting less and walking more’

  • First

    • by raising awareness of the issue of ‘sitting down time’

  • Second

    • by personal engagement with volunteers who wanted to ‘sit less and walk more’ during the working day

    • this took the form of a 4 week ‘project’


Tasks involved
Tasks involved

  • Meetings and briefing to raise awareness

    • ~50 people in total

  • Blog providing regular info and discussion:

    • over 600 views/260 visitors during project

  • Personal engagement for those interested

    • review of physical activity and sitting time

    • Use of pedometer to monitor activity during work day

  • Invitation event–TODAY!

  • Report to Beltane


Meetings and greetings
Meetings and greetings

  • 6 briefing meetings in groups of 3-20

    • [n= 50]

  • 35 individuals were interested in personal change

  • 20 people have completed the 4 week ‘project’ to date

  • 13 people have completed a more in depth interview


What we asked people to do
What we asked people to do

  • Wear a pedometer for a ‘baseline’ week

  • Decide on whether or not behaviour change needed

  • Try new ways of working that involved ‘sitting less and walking more’ for 3 weeks

  • Return results sheets to Nanette

  • Complete an interview with Liz


Some quantitative results
Some quantitative results

An increase of

~300 steps /day

Paired t-test =2.9 (17), p<0.01


Additional information
Additional information

  • Step count recorded during working day

    • Lowest 620

    • Highest 8,320

  • Ironically

    • the days when parliament ‘sitting’ created most activity!


Top tips
Top tips

  • Use stairs rather than lift

  • Leave desk at regular intervals

  • Get outside for a breath of fresh air

  • Speak directly to colleagues

  • Do not eat lunch at desk

  • Use distant water coolers, printers, photocopiers and toilets


Issues
Issues

  • For women

    • Wearing the pedometer

    • Solved by new generation pedometers

  • Differing number of working hours/day

  • Working at home days observed to be very sedentary


Initial qualitative findings themes
Initial qualitative findings: themes

  • Explored participants’ experiences and thoughts on the project

  • Examined participants’ attitudes towards sedentariness and physical activity at work

  • Looked at enablers and constrainers - physical and cultural


1 experience of the project
1. Experience of the project

  • Overall enthusiasm

  • Pedometers useful – objective measure

  • Raised awareness about activity and inactivity

  • Encouraged behaviour change, certainly in the short-term

  • Encouraged reflection on the structure and culture of work and how that interacted with personal choice and action in relation to physical (in)activity


2 attitudes
2. Attitudes

  • General frustration with ‘desk-bound’ existence

  • Difficult to build-in activity

  • Dependent on role – some more active than others

  • Blame technology

  • Broad recognition of need to be more physically active generally and specifically


3 enablers and constrainers
3. Enablers and constrainers

  • The physical environment:

    • Parliament building

    • Holyrood area

  • The cultural environment:

    • Desk presenteeism

    • Interruption

    • ‘Closing’ open spaces – related to ‘siloism’, confidence

    • Meetings – sitting, long


Paul grice ceo scottish parliament
Paul Grice, CEO Scottish Parliament

"I think there is a culture of sitting, and I haven’t really given it deep thought as to why that would be. An obvious one, there’s chairs everywhere! And we’re sitting now. It’s a comfortable, relaxing, informal way of doing things, if we were to stand up right now, we would both I think feel a little more formal about it. … But I think it is an area that could and should be addressed, and I think the way to do that would be perhaps to pilot it more formally [standing meetings] and invite a couple of teams just to try it and then let us know how did it feel …

Depending on what comes out of your study, I’d be willing to have a further look at that … maybe get a couple of teams that have been part of this, just to say well would you like to experiment a bit with that and come back with your thoughts”


Http sitless wordpress com
http://sitless.wordpress.com/

  • Blog – please add comments and questions

  • Tweet using #sitless


Conclusions
Conclusions

  • For most people the working day is more sedentary than active

  • Modest changes to working practice can alter that

  • The parliamentary volunteers have suggested some ‘top tips’ that could help any workforce

    • ‘sit less and walk more’


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