OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to compare energy expenditure (EE, kcal/min) at three workstations during an attention-demanding cognitive function task (Test of Variables of Attention or TOVA). Workstations included the seated desk (SIT), standing desk (STAND), and seated workstation designed to promote spontaneous movement (SWING).
METHODS: Adult males (n = 11) and females (n = 13) were assessed for EE using VO2 and VCO2 per quarter of the 22-min TOVA.
RESULTS: Average EE were 1.39 ± 0.06 (SIT), 1.55 ± 0.08 (SWING), and 1.44 ± 0.08 (STAND). Main effects (P < 0.05) were seen for workstation (SWING, STAND > SIT), and quarter of TOVA (Q2 < Q1,Q3,Q4). TOVA errors and response times were not different for workstations but increased for Q3 and Q4.
CONCLUSION: Spontaneous movement at an alternative workstation elevated EE 10% to 11% compared with sitting and could increase daily nonexercise activity thermogenesis without diminishing mental attention to desk work.