Change in work day step counts, wellbeing and job performance in Catalan university employees: A randomised controlled trial

Anna Puig-Ribera*, Jim McKenna, Nicholas Gilson, Wendy J. Brown

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

52 Citations (Scopus)


Using a randomised controlled trial design, this feasibility study assessed the impact of two walking interventions on quality of life (QoL) and job performance of Catalan university employees. A convenience sample of 70 employees completed baseline and intervention measures of step counts (Yamax SW 200 pedometer), wellbeing (SF-12 questionnaire) and work performance (Work Limitations Questionnaire) over 9 weeks. Before intervention, baseline step counts (five working days) were used to randomly allocate participants to a control (n = 26), “walking routes” (n = 19) and “walking while working” (n = 25) groups. Intervention effects were evaluated by calculating differences between pre-intervention and intervention data. One-way ANOVA was used to examine differences between groups. No significant group differences were found for changes in work-day step counts, QoL or work performance. When data from the two intervention groups were pooled (n = 44) there was a significant increase in step counts (+659 steps/day; n = 12; p < 0.01) among participants classified as ‘Sedentary—Low active’ (0—7499 steps/day) at baseline. In contrast there was a significant decrease (—637 steps/day; p < 0.05) in those initially categorised as ‘Active’ (> 10,000 steps/day; n = 21) and no change in those categorised as ‘Moderately Active’ (7500—9999, n = 11). The ‘Sedentary—Low activity’ group showed consistently greater improvements in QoL and work performance scores than the Moderate and Active groups. Initially low active participants showed the greatest increase in step counts and improved QoL and work productivity profiles. These data indicate the potential for improving QoL and job productivity through workplace walking in inactive Catalan employees.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)11-16
Number of pages6
JournalGlobal Health Promotion
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2008
Externally publishedYes


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