5 Recommendations for research
PHIAC recommends that the following research questions should be addressed in order to improve the evidence relating to workplace physical activity. It notes that 'effectiveness' in this context relates not only to the size of the effect, but also to the cost effectiveness, duration of effect and harmful/negative effects.
How is the effectiveness of workplace physical activity interventions influenced by the characteristics (for example, age, ethnicity, gender, socioeconomic status or disability) of employees?
How is the effectiveness of workplace physical activity interventions influenced by the size of the workplace and the type of occupations involved?
Do employer schemes to encourage employees to walk or cycle to work increase the individual's overall level of physical activity? For example, does an increase in the use of transport involving physical activity to commute to work lead to a decrease in other types of physical activity? Or is there an overall net increase in the individual's physical activity levels?
To what extent do employers benefit from increased productivity and reduced sickness absence if their employees become more physically active?
How effective are incentive schemes at increasing workplace physical activity levels?
More detail on the evidence gaps identified during the development of this guidance is provided in appendix D.