Your Office Chair Is Not Killing You
Business Week reports that “Your Office Chair Is Killing You.” It is entirely unclear as to why Business Week is reporting this story now though. Science Magazine published the underlying study five years ago. That research revealed that on the average people burn 100 extra calories every hour while walking slowly — at one mile-per-hour — than while sitting in a chair. Shocking.
And as a result of this study, Business Week reports that office chairs are killing Americans. Business Week contends that the treadmill desk is our only hope. Unfortunately, no one has studied whether workers are productive while trying to work while walking at slow speeds.
Conveniently, Dr. Levine, the researcher behind the 2005 findings, is designing and marketing desk treadmills. “Recently [he] talked to Best Buy , Wal-Mart, and Salo accounting about letting him design their offices and keep people walking and working as much as possible.”
The video below is a clip of Dr. Levine hawking his wares on Good Morning America. In the two-year-old clip, Diane Sawyer uses a Treadmill/Desk, while wearing heels. (2:39; 2:55). Dr. Levine points this out and exclaims that she is “looking fabulous.” (3:07). And he says that this is the “absolute natural way the body is meant to be.” (3:21).
This guy is off his rocker. Siouxsie doesn’t trust him for a second. He stands idly by and even encourages people to wear heels on a treadmill. This can’t be good for you. Plus, his accent is straight out of an infomercial.
Siouxsie predicts the treadmill desk will never make it. These desks look like something out of the Jetsons. Not to mention that these things look like death traps for the clumsy. Forget about drinking your morning coffee at your desk.
If these things do make it though, Siouxise bets there will be some pretty creative personal injury claims.
So what to do instead? Common sense suggests that a good place to start would be to take some breaks, walk during lunch, use the stairs, and practice some yoga.