Interstate Employees Encouraged to Take-a-Stand

Did you know that there are great potential health benefits linked to standing at your desk as opposed to sitting eight hours per day? According to the American Medical Association, studies show that individuals in an office environment who performed tasks while standing during the workday versus sitting, experienced greater health benefits such as a reduced risk of obesity. Consistently sitting at work for eight hours, sometimes longer, may possibly take a toll on the body’s physical state.The American Medical Association (AMA) argues that sitting for extended periods of time can have a negative influence on personal health. “For people who sit most of the day, their risk of heart attack is about the same as smoking,” according to Mayo Clinic Cardiologist, Martha Grogan. Medical researchers such as James Levine, MD, PhD agrees that remaining inactive can impact ones metabolic system. “Today, our bodies are breaking down from obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, cancer, depression and the cascade of health ills and everyday sickness that come from what scientists have named sitting disease,” says Levine.

Interstate is constantly looking for innovative ways to support employee’s health and wellness. In an effort to be proactive in addressing this particular medical concern, Interstate Service Group President, Ken Morrissette, engaged employees in a morning staff meeting with facts he gathered after reading an AMA article about our modern sedentary culture. Many employees were intrigued by his findings and quickly did a mental self-assessment of how often they sit or how frequently they may stand during their eight hours at work. Ken then offered a challenge for employees to exchange their low sitting desks for a higher adjusted desk and chair suited for standing. While many were somewhat reluctant or unsure about trying this new concept, five curious and health conscious souls jumped at the chance to volunteer for the initial test.

 After the testing phase, Interstate experienced an overwhelming amount of positive responses from volunteers. Since the initial test, more Interstate employees have traded in their low-sitting desk for the higher adjusted standing desk. Though many were encouraged to participate, Interstate cautioned employees to think it through and consult with their health care provider if necessary to make the best decision for their individual needs. We asked participants to give their thoughts and comments on the new desk and we were able to hear firsthand how the standing desk is impacting them. “Before having my standing desk I would often slouch but now I notice a dramatic improvement in my posture,” says Sandi. Another eager volunteer Carol, expressed that standing encourages her body to move through stretching and practicing better posture, “ I no longer get stiff knees from sitting for hours at a time, I feel better at the end of each day” she added. Intestate is eager to see more employees standing throughout each workday - reaping the health benefits of this improved method of working.         



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