Intervening to reduce workplace sitting time: how and when do changes to sitting time occur?

Samantha K. Stephens, Elizabeth A.H. Wrinkler, Stewart G. Trost, David W. Dunstan, Elizabeth G. Eakin, Sebastien F.M. Chastin, Genevieve Healy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

38 Citations (Scopus)


Objective To investigate how and when changes in workplace sitting time occurred following a workplace intervention to inform evaluation of intervention success. Method The 4-week Stand Up Comcare study ( June- September 2011) aimed to reduce workplacesitting time via regularly interrupting and replacing sitting time throughout the day. Activity monitor (activPAL3) workplace data from control (n=22) and intervention participants (n=21) were analysed. Differences in the number and usual duration of sitting bouts were used to evaluate how change occurred. To examine when change occurred, intervention effects were compared by hour since starting work and hour of the workday. Change in workplace activity (sitting, standing, stepping) was examined to further inform alignment with intervention messages. Individual variability was examined in how and when the change occurred. Results Overall, behavioural changes aligned with intervention aims. All intervention participants reduced total workplace sitting time, though there was wide individual variability observed (range -29 to -262 min per 8 h workday). On average, intervention participants reduced number of sitting bouts (-4.6 bouts (95% CI -10.1 to 1.0), p=0.106) and usual sitting bout duration (-5.6 min (95% CI -9.8 to -1.4, p=0.011)) relative to controls. Sitting time reductions were observed across the workday, though intervention effects varied by hour of the day (p=0.015). The intervention group successfully adopted the Stand Up and Sit Less intervention messages across the day. Conclusion These analyses confirmed that thisworkplace intervention successfully modified sitting behaviour as intended (ie, fewer and shorter sitting bouts, with changes occurring throughout the day).
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1037-1042
Number of pages6
JournalBritish Journal of Sports Medicine
Issue number13
Early online date9 May 2014
Publication statusPublished - 11 Jun 2014


  • workplace behaviour
  • sitting time
  • activity monitor


Dive into the research topics of 'Intervening to reduce workplace sitting time: how and when do changes to sitting time occur?'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this