The active workplace study: Protocol for a randomized controlled trial with sedentary workers

Brad Wipfli, Sara Wild, Ginger C. Hanson, Steven A. Shea, Kerri Winters-Stone, Saurabh S. Thosar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives: Sedentary behavior is pervasive in the workplace and is harmful to health. Research on the effectiveness of comprehensive workplace interventions to reduce sedentary behavior and improve worker health and safety is crucial as sedentary jobs become more common. Methods: We developed a Total Worker Health intervention targeting sedentary behavior in call centers, and are evaluating intervention effectiveness in a randomized controlled trial. Four worksites will be randomly assigned to an intervention or control condition. The intervention condition includes the provision of active workstations along with programs and procedures at environmental, organizational, and individual levels. Control worksites will receive active workstations with no additional support, following common organizational practices. Results: Outcomes include objectively measured physical activity, biological markers of health, and self-report survey data at baseline, after the 6-month intervention or control period, and at a 12-month follow-up. Conclusions: The aims of the study are to determine whether a Total Worker Health intervention has stronger impacts on workplace sedentary behavior, uninterrupted bouts of sitting, and worker health and safety compared to a usual practice control condition. The study will inform future workplace sedentary behavior intervention and dissemination research, along with organizational best practices for reducing sedentary behavior in the workplace.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number106311
JournalContemporary Clinical Trials
StatePublished - Apr 2021


  • Physical activity
  • Sedentary behavior
  • Total worker health
  • Uninterrupted sitting
  • Workplace intervention

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology (medical)


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