The 311 call center for the City of Dallas (Texas) realized last year that the amount of sedentary time in their employee’s days were all adding up to some very unhappy and unhealthy workers but rather than sit on their laurels the city decided to do something about it. They brought in TrekDesk Treadmill Desks for employees to measure the impact on health that walking during work hours might have on their employee base.
Chief Wellness Officer, Forest Turner, responsible for more than 12,000 employees summed up the thought process behind their initial pilot project for CBS News this week.“Our healthcare claims show that we spend a great deal of our annual budget on treatment of disease that is brought on by being overweight. We want to use this as a chance toward improving that.” Turner emphasized that they are approaching this pilot program from a business perspective initially,The overall goal is to help improve the health of city employees. If we improve the health, we improve the bottom line.”
How effective has the TrekDesk been for employees? Amanda Staley has been walking at her TrekDesk for the past year and in that time has lost 65 pounds. Amanda’s initial reaction to the TrekDesk was common for most employees. “Initially I was not for it,” she said. “Other people did it, and I was like, ‘there’s no way I’m going to be able to talk on the phone and walk.’ But once I tried it, I picked it up and I love it.” Amanda uses her TrekDesk about four hours per day and in that time burns an average of 500 calories walking 5-6 miles. This frees up the TrekDesk for another employee to use it.
Amanda’s success inspired call center employee Beverly Moore to give it a try. “I was paying for a gym membership but never using it, so when they put the treadmill desk in, I was like, ‘Alright!’,” related Moore. In less than 3 months Beverly has lost 15 pounds.
We are always quick to point out that although weight loss is the first thing people focus on when considering using a treadmill desk there are many more significant benefits which have been proven such as a boost in mood, productivity, cognitive skills, and disease prevention. Amanda and Beverly chimed in on this point in their interview with CBS.“I actually had a relative of mine who had a lot of serious health issues due to her weight,” she said. “I decided that I wanted to get healthier for myself and my kids,” related Beverly. “It boosts my mood. You just have more energy throughout the day,” stated Straley. Both are quick to add that walking daily with the TrekDesk has improved their health. The gratitude of happy employees is readily evident as well. “For the city to think about their workers in that way, I thought it was really cool of them to do that,” added Moore.
“There are tens of thousands of satisfied treadmill desk users showing that it is not necessary to be confined to a desk all day just to get your work done. Amanda and Beverly’s weight loss is very gratifying to hear about because that improves their health in a myriad of ways. We like to point out that the overwhelming health benefits of staying in motion during the day seem to be under-reported in the media,” stated Steve Bordley, CEO of TrekDesk Treadmill Desk.
There are thousands of studies chronically the health benefits of walking and the health risks of sitting and many are posted online at the TrekDesk Research Center.