The Effect of Worksite Physical Activity Intervention on Physical Capacity, Health, and Productivity: A 1-Year Randomized Controlled Trial

Department of Exercise and Sport Sciences, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark.
Journal of occupational and environmental medicine / American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine (Impact Factor: 1.63). 07/2009; 51(7):759-70. DOI: 10.1097/JOM.0b013e3181a8663a
Source: PubMed


To investigate the effect of two contrasting physical activity worksite interventions versus a reference intervention (REF) on various health outcomes.
A 1-year randomized controlled trial was conducted with specific resistance training (SRT), all-round physical exercise (APE), and REF.
SRT and APE compared with REF showed significant reductions in systolic blood pressure (approximately 6 mm Hg), body fat percentage (approximately 2.2 body fat%), as well as shoulder and back pain (approximately 30% reduction in duration). Muscle strength (APE and SRT) and maximal oxygen uptake (APE) increased approximately 10%.
Worksite intervention with both SRT as well as APE is recommended, since these activities compared with REF resulted in clinically relevant reductions of cardiovascular and metabolic syndrome-related risk factors as well as musculoskeletal pain symptoms, in combination with minor increases in physical capacity.

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Available from: Ernst Albin Hansen, Mar 09, 2015
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    • "Moreover, greater functional capacity, as measured by cardiorespiratory fitness, is related to increased quantity of work performed, and a higher level of cardiorespiratory fitness is related to a lesser effort exerted when performing certain work tasks [12]. Among job groups with sedentary work efficacy of physical activities have been shown for prevention of musculoskeletal disorders [16] and previous studies recommend to include both strength training and aerobic fitness training in preventive activities [17]. However, there is a lack of evidence on preventive activities among job groups with physical heavy work and activities for prevention of sickness absence and job [13]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Health care workers have high physical work demands, involving patient handling and manual work tasks. A strategy for prevention of work-related musculoskeletal disorders can enhance the physical capacity of the health care worker. The aim of this study is to evaluate the efficacy of 'Tailored Physical Activity' for health care workers in the Sonderborg Municipality. This protocol describes the design of a randomised controlled trial to assess the efficacy of 'Tailored Physical Activity' versus a reference group for health care workers in the Sonderborg Municipality. Inclusion criteria to be fulfilled: health care workers with daily work that includes manual work and with the experience of work-related musculoskeletal pain in the back or upper body.All participants will receive 'Health Guidance', a (90-minute) individualised dialogue focusing on improving life style, based on assessments of risk behaviour, on motivation for change and on personal resources. In addition, the experimental groups will receive 'Tailored Physical Activity' (three 50-minute sessions per week over 10 weeks). The reference group will receive only 'Health Guidance'.The primary outcome measure is the participants' self-reported sickness absence during the last three months due to musculoskeletal troubles, measured 3 and 12 months after baseline.In addition, secondary outcomes include anthropometric measurements, functional capacity and self-reported number of sick days, musculoskeletal symptoms, self-reported health, work ability, work productivity, physical capacity, kinesiophobia and physical functional status. The results from this study will contribute to the knowledge about evidence-based interventions for prevention of sickness absence among health care workers.Trial registration: NCT01543984.
    BMC Public Health 10/2013; 13(1):917. DOI:10.1186/1471-2458-13-917 · 2.26 Impact Factor
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    • "According to the IPAQ classification, approximately 88% of the workers belonged to the physically active category in relation to the recommendation of the American College of Sports Medicine [25]. It is likely that some of these workers overestimated their level of physical activity since 40% of all adults in Denmark do not fulfil the recommendation for physical activity [23,52]. Another explanation is related to the fact that the IPAQ does not enable detection of relatively small changes like 1 hour/week in physical activity [23]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Computer users often report musculoskeletal complaints and pain in the upper extremities and the neck-shoulder region. However, recent epidemiological studies do not report a relationship between the extent of computer use and work-related musculoskeletal disorders (WMSD).The aim of this study was to conduct an explorative analysis on short and long-term pain complaints and work-related variables in a cohort of Danish computer users. A structured web-based questionnaire including questions related to musculoskeletal pain, anthropometrics, work-related variables, work ability, productivity, health-related parameters, lifestyle variables as well as physical activity during leisure time was designed. Six hundred and ninety office workers completed the questionnaire responding to an announcement posted in a union magazine. The questionnaire outcomes, i.e., pain intensity, duration and locations as well as anthropometrics, work-related variables, work ability, productivity, and level of physical activity, were stratified by gender and correlations were obtained. Women reported higher pain intensity, longer pain duration as well as more locations with pain than men (P < 0.05). In parallel, women scored poorer work ability and ability to fulfil the requirements on productivity than men (P < 0.05). Strong positive correlations were found between pain intensity and pain duration for the forearm, elbow, neck and shoulder (P < 0.001). Moderate negative correlations were seen between pain intensity and work ability/productivity (P < 0.001). The present results provide new key information on pain characteristics in office workers. The differences in pain characteristics, i.e., higher intensity, longer duration and more pain locations as well as poorer work ability reported by women workers relate to their higher risk of contracting WMSD. Overall, this investigation confirmed the complex interplay between anthropometrics, work ability, productivity, and pain perception among computer users.
    BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders 08/2013; 14(1):226. DOI:10.1186/1471-2474-14-226 · 1.72 Impact Factor
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    • "Intervention programmes with physical training to improve strength have been successfully tested among office workers [10,11]. However, no previous high quality studies have investigated the effects of physical training on physical resources among cleaners. "
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    ABSTRACT: Cleaners constitute a job group with poor health and low socioeconomic resources. Therefore, there is a great need for scientifically documented health promoting initiatives for cleaners. However, both workplace initiatives and high quality intervention studies are lacking. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effects of a 3-month workplace trial with interventions to improve physical or cognitive behavioural resources among cleaners. A cluster randomised controlled trial was conducted among 294 female cleaners from 9 workplaces. The participants were allocated to three groups: Physical coordination training (PCT, n = 95), Cognitive behavioural theory-based training (CBTr, n = 99) and Reference group (REF, n = 100). Interventions were conducted during work hours for an average of 1 hour/week. Muscle strength was measured by maximal voluntary contractions in trunk/extension, and shoulder abduction/elevation. Postural balance was measured on a force platform. Kinesiophobia was measured with Tampa Scale for Kinesiophobia. Test and questionnaires were completed at baseline and at 3-month follow-up and analyses followed the intention-to-treat (ITT) principle with last observation carried forward in case of missing data at follow-up. Reports and analyses are given on true observations as well. ITT-analyses revealed that PCT improved strength of the trunk (p < .05) and postural balance (p < .05) compared to CBTr and REF. Based on true observations the strength and balance improvements corresponded to ~20% and ~16%, respectively. ITT-analyses showed that CBTr reduced kinesiophobia compared to PCT and REF (p < .05). Based on true observations, the improvement corresponded to a ~16% improvement. This workplace-based intervention study including PCT and CBTr among cleaners improved strength and postural balance from PCT, and kinesiophobia from CBTr. The improved strength, postural balance and kinesiophobia may improve the cleaners' tolerance for high physical work demands. Future studies should investigate the potential in the combination of PCT and CBTr in a workplace intervention. Current controlled trials ISRCTN96241850.
    BMC Public Health 10/2011; 11(1):776. DOI:10.1186/1471-2458-11-776 · 2.26 Impact Factor
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