Blue Shield puts ‘Walkstations’ to the test
Folks may now have another excuse to skip the gym — by working out in their office, literally.
Blue Shield of California is kicking off a new wellness initiative aimed at increasing exercise in the workplace by hooking up a treadmill to a desk.
These treadmills or “walkstations” are integrated with computers and phones, allowing employees to simultaneously walk and work at the same time. The treadmill has a maximum speed of up to two miles per hour, allowing employees to get active without getting sweaty. The walkstations are located in Blue Shield offices in El Dorado Hills, Lodi, Redding and San Francisco.
In addition, Blue Shield is conducting a study led by noted researchers from UC Berkeley and Harvard to study the effectiveness of the walkstation and the impact of different incentives on healthy behaviors. About 240 employees from four Blue Shield campuses will participate in this initial 90-day study — 100 of those employees are from our El Dorado Hills campus.
Previous research has shown that the time spent performing low-level physical activity can influence one’s health status just as much as the time spent doing rigorous exercise. Being in the study could help participants become more physically active and burn more calories, which could lead to weight loss and other health benefits.