A Call to Clarify the Intensity and Classification of Standing Behavior
AffiliationHuman Science Research Centre
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AbstractPublic health guidelines for physical activity now include recommendations to break up prolonged sitting with light-intensity activities. Concurrently, interventions to increase standing have emerged, especially within the workplace in the form of sit–stand or standing workstations. Moreover, in short-duration studies, breaking up prolonged sitting with standing has been associated improved cardiometabolic outcomes. Publicly available estimates of the intensity of standing range from 1.5 to 2.3 metabolic equivalents (METs), neatly classifying standing as a light-intensity activity (>1.5 to <3.0 METs). Further delineation between ‘active’ and ‘passive’ standing has been proposed, with corresponding METs of >2.0 METs and ≤2.0 METs, respectively. However, this study reviews data suggesting that some standing (e.g., while performing deskwork) is substantially below the minimum light intensity activity threshold of 1.5 METs. These data bring into question whether standing should be universally classified as a light-intensity behavior. The objectives of this study are to (i) highlight discrepancies in classifying standing behavior in the human movement spectrum continuum, and (ii) to propose a realignment of the ‘active’ vs. ‘passive’ standing threshold to match the light intensity threshold to help provide a clearer research framework and subsequent public health messaging for the expected health benefits from standing.
CitationKowalsky, R.J., Stoner, L., Faghy, M.A. and Barone Gibbs, B., (2021). 'A Call to Clarify the Intensity and Classification of Standing Behavior'. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 18(16), pp. 1-5.
JournalInternational journal of environmental research and public health
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