NEWS: Offices to get active for ‘On your feet Britain' day on 27 April

Workplaces and individuals across Britain will be encouraged to sit less and move more during their working day next Friday for On Your Feet Britain.

On 27 April, the Get Britain Standing campaign in association with Active Working will be asking the nation to unite against prolonged office sitting by taking on the challenge to get on their feet. 

Enter the social media competition for the chance to win one of 20 free standing desks by posting photos of you or your colleagues using #OYF18 or #OnYourFeetBritain with @getGBstanding before April 30th 2018. 

Or, follow tips to incorporate movement into the working day:

  • Take regular breaks from your computer, stand up, stretch and walk around the office. Ignore the bemused looks.
  • Make phone calls standing up.
  • Use the stairs.
  • Have standing or walking meetings.
  • Have one less chair than people at meetings.
  • Get everyone to move around with each new agenda item.
  • Organise a lunchtime walk. Walk to work, or get off a few stops earlier and walk the rest of the way.

Over the last 40 years in Britain, with the advent of modern ways of working, we have lost two thirds of the activity that was previously in the workplace. Now the average office worker sits for 10 hours a day, 70% of this sitting time taking place at work, according to Active Working.

Poster from Active Working's campaign

But extended sitting can lead to health problems, with recent Lancet research on more than one million adults in 2016 showing that sitting for at least eight hours a day could increase the risk of premature death by up to 60 per cent.

Last month, a major Cancer Research study showed that being overweight or obese contributed to the second biggest cause of preventable cancer in the UK. A factor that could be reduced with more exercise and better eating habits.

Gavin Bradley, director of Active Working, said:  “We need to take drastic actions to create a working culture that does not accept prolonged and excessive sitting. We all need to sit from time to time, but in moderation and frequently broken up so our metabolism other important physiological functions can be activated.”

He added that the benefits of being active could also be good for productivity: “The urgency to take greater action to offer a healthy office environment is gaining momentum as we battle the cost burden of higher absenteeism and poor productivity.”