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Ergonomics and Obesity in the Workplace - An SB Seating Event

by Back2


Posted on 2nd February 2016


SB Seating co-hosted an event at their Clerkenwell showroom back in November to discuss “Approaches to Obesity in the Workplace”.

The event was attended by professionals in healthcare, office management and manufacturing. You can read the full summary here.


The two main topics discussed at the event were "prevention vs remedy" and "to what extent individuals and employers are responsible for employee well being". At Back2 we find that by the time that we see an individual they are already at the remedy stage and one aspect of our job is to identify the most appropriate solution that will work for all parties involved, including the employer.

Active Sitting

As one of the leading UK retailers of ergonomic chairs, desks and furniture, Back2 have long promoted the concept of 'active sitting' and this was a topic of discussion at the event led by Erlend Weinholdt – Lead Ergonomist at SB Seating. 'Active Sitting' is using a chair that encourage you to move and not keep the same static posture while sitting.

'Active Sitting' can help improve blood flow around the body and can also help alleviate symptoms of muskulo-skeletal disorders caused by holding static postures. As we like to say "The best posture to assume is the next one" (pdf file).  The concept of 'Active Sitting' is perfectly implemented in chairs from SB Seating's brands HAG & RH.

Sit-Standing Desks

Sit-standing desks were identified as another piece of furniture that can assist with obesity-related issues. By alternating between sitting and standing we can help to prevent the issues associated with sitting for long periods of time. One of the negative points about standing desks mentioned at the event was that even if an employer was to provide a standing desk for the employee there is no guarantee that the employee will use the desk while standing.

From our experience once the option of standing has been introduced, and the employee is trained in correct use, the transition from sitting to standing through the day becomes intuitive to the individual. When working at an office desk many of us will get to a point where we have some form of discomfort in the day but cannot do anything about it as we have work to do and have to stay seated at our desk. With a standing desk we have the option to raise the desk, stand-up and continue working.

You may be wondering why we have not mentioned obesity too much in our summary of the event and the reason is that everything we have mentioned so far applies to all office worker who spend most of their day at a desk. The concepts of 'active sitting' and 'sit-standing' will help all office workers during their working day.

Bariatric Seating

Our focus at Back2 is to help to prevent and alleviate issues caused by working at an office desk. Unfortunately what we do cannot prevent obesity but we can help obese people to select the correct products for their needs and advise accordingly.
Our most popular range of products for obese people are our wide range of bariatric chairs from leading manufacturer BodyBilt.

BodyBilt are an American company who focus on manufacturing heavy-duty ergonomic chairs that last. BodyBilt Chairs can support users upto 226kg. A BodyBilt chair combined with a standing desk could be the best solution for obese people looking to prevent and remedy issues caused by working for long periods at an office desk.

Related Posts

Movement - the key to healthy sitting

Healthy vs Unhealthy Sitting

How to set-up your desk correctly

How to sit at a desk properly

10 Tips to Prevent Back Problems

Choosing an Ergonomic Desk


Posted in on 2nd February 2016 by Back2.