As we all know sitting is officially the new smoking! In recent years, research on sedentary behaviour has revealed that a multitude of serious health risks (heart disease, cancer & dementia to name but a few) are connected to prolonged and excessive sitting.
British people sit for 8.9 hours each day (on average). An average of 6 are spent sitting at their desks! This level of inactivity has been proven to decrease a man’s life span by 20% and a woman’s by 40%! Work related back pain is the leading cause of sickness absence from work costing British businesses £5 billion per year (a total of 4.9 million days).
With stats like these in mind it has never been more important to consider workplace health when designing the layout of your office. A healthier workplace is a happier and more productive one which benefits both employees and employers.
Ergonomics and orthopaedic seating options are no longer an expensive option with more and more manufacturers producing posture improving office chairs. Sit-stand desks enable us to stand and not sit whilst we are working. Standing for just 3 hours a day makes an incredible difference to our posture and overall well-being. Standing for 3 hours a day, 5 days a week burns an additional 750 calories a week. That’s 30,000 extra calories a year which is attributable to 8lbs of fat or running 10 marathons!
Impressive as this is it is only half the battle and the real key to workplace health is movement. We should all walk a recommended 10,000 steps a day but a sedentary person may only walk an average of 1,000 to 3,000. Completing 10,000 steps a day burns an extra 2,000 to 3,500 calories a week (3,500 calories equates to 1 pound of body weight). And so we see how important it is to lure our employees away from their desks!
Open plan office environments which incorporate ‘break out’ areas in the form of meet or work ‘away-from-the-desk’ areas optimise space and provide a healthy working atmosphere. Break out spaces can be quiet, collaborative, formal, informal, fixed, flexible and functional, the optimal blend will vary by company.
At Metric we are 100% customer focused. We know that every business is unique and so we create and deliver custom workplaces that actually work. We consider each and every business and create and fit together the ideal combination of task specific areas for that business.
By creating task specific areas people are encouraged to move around and adopt a variety of postures over the course of the day which is essential to workplace health . Keeping employees on the move is vital to their health, productivity and creativity.
To find out more or to talk to our workplace design experts call us on 01784 4456850.