Effect of active workstation on energy expenditure and job performance: A systematic review and meta-analysis

Chunmei Cao, Yu Liu, Weimo Zhu, Jiangjun Ma

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Recently developed active workstation could become a potential means for worksite physical activity and wellness promotion. The aim of this review was to quantitatively examine the effectiveness of active workstation in energy expenditure and job performance. Methods: The literature search was conducted in 6 databases (PubMed, SPORTDiscuss, Web of Science, ProQuest, ScienceDirect, and Scopuse) for articles published up to February 2014, from which a systematic review and meta-analysis was conducted. Results: The cumulative analysis for EE showed there was significant increase in EE using active workstation [mean effect size (MES): 1.47; 95%confidence interval (CI): 1.22 to 1.72, P <.0001]. Results from job performance indicated 2 findings: (1) active workstation did not affect selective attention, processing speed, speech quality, reading comprehension, interpretation and accuracy of transcription; and (2) it could decrease the efficiency of typing speed (MES: -0.55; CI: -0.88 to -0.21, P <.001) and mouse clicking (MES: -1.10; CI: -1.29 to -0.92, P <.001). Conclusion: Active workstation could significantly increase daily PA and be potentially useful in reducing workplace sedentariness. Although some parts of job performance were significantly lower, others were not. As a result there was little effect on real-life work productivity if we made a good arrangement of job tasks.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)562-571
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Physical Activity and Health
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2016


  • Effect size
  • Health benefit
  • Physical activity
  • Work productivity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine


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