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Occupational sitting in forced home office during Covid-19 pandemic : a qualitative study among UT employees

Tzaneti, E.E (2021) Occupational sitting in forced home office during Covid-19 pandemic : a qualitative study among UT employees.

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Abstract:Purpose: Sedentary behaviour is associated with premature mortality, cancer, and chronic illnesses. The existing literature focuses on the occupational sitting behaviour of office employees in traditional offices. However, it lacks a thorough investigation on forced home office conditions, as imposed during the Covid-19 pandemic. The aim of this study was to investigate the perspectives of the employees on occupational sitting time in forced home office under Covid-19 regulations, analysing the participants’ responses related to behaviour, cognitions, emotions, and negative health effects components as well as barriers and facilitators to reducing occupational sitting time. Method: This online cross-sectional study was completed by 96 employees from the University of Twente. Seven open questions were used for the analysis and focused on experiences of employees when working from home during Covid-19 regulations, occupational sitting in general, experiences of employees with sitting while working from home and experienced barriers and enablers to reduce occupational sitting time while working from home. Inductive and deductive coding was used to analyse the employees’ answers. Through five phases the development of the final coding scheme was developed. Results: Employees expressed both negative and positive aspects of occupational sitting time while working from home during Covid-19. The majority pointed out that they tried to find activities to stand up in order to reduce the total occupational sitting time. Participants also described possible ways to reduce occupational sitting time and activities they engage in to reduce occupational sitting time or ways they imagine might be helpful for them. Barriers (e.g., lack of adequate office equipment) and facilitators (e.g., reminders, outside activities) were stated by the participants as well. Conclusion: This study showed that employees experienced many changes in their daily work routines when working from home as compared to working at the UT, reporting that they do not prefer working at home. The main reason for this was due to occupational sitting, which tends to increase during the Covid-19 regulations. Future research is essential to identify potential strategies for reducing occupational sitting behaviour at home and providing information about the effects of prolonged sitting time along with interventions.
Item Type:Essay (Bachelor)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:77 psychology
Programme:Psychology BSc (56604)
Link to this item:http://purl.utwente.nl/essays/85586
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