A new trend proposes an alternative method for trying to keep office workers healthy: get them walking while working at their computers. But would you want to work on a treadmill desk?

Studies have suggested that people with jobs requiring them to sit for long periods have higher risk of cardiovascular disease, and a higher risk of obesity. In fact, sitting for too many hours each day can have serious implications for our health and life span. It’s something that sounds so obvious, but if we have a sedentary job there’s nothing we can do, right? Well actually there is…

It started with the standing desk, and then came the treadmill. Research into the benefits of treadmill desks is still in its infancy, but one recent study has shown that despite an initial drop in worker productivity as users adjusted to the new mode of working, over the longer term productivity was seen to increase. Of course weight loss and other associated health benefits are pretty indisputable.

The set-up costs are higher with the need to install not only an unusually tall desk, but a machine treadmill as well. But many proponents are arguing that the increased productivity and health of employees will more than outweigh the setup costs of installing such desks, and that companies unwilling to spend on such an outlay are being financially short-sighted.

Advocates of the method have claimed that they now feel strange if forced to sit during working hours. The settings are usually controlled so that nobody can attempt to run while working, but even so it is probably best to alternate walking and standing at these workstations in the beginning.

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