Plain English Summary
Background and study aims:
Many studies show that physical activity is beneficial, but more recently it has been shown that even in people who exercise regularly, long periods of physical inactivity can cause diseases such as diabetes, metabolic syndrome, cardiovascular disease, certain cancers and even death. This study is looking at the effects of a program of movements specifically designed to be carried out throughout the day in the workplace to break up periods of physical inactivity. The aim of the study is to examine the acceptability of a movement program in the workplace, whether volunteers are able to take part and the effects of the program on physical and mental well-being.
Who can participate?
All staff in the Health Sciences Faculty of a Western Australian University who are able to access video attachments in emails.
What does the study involve?
Volunteers from an Australian Health Faculty workforce are recruited based on their willingness to take part and their having access to video e-mail links. During the four-week study period they receive a daily video-link showing the day’s movement and a short blog about the benefits of moving. They are expected to carry out the movement alone or with colleagues at least three times per day, and add it to the previous movements of the week, gradually building up the week's choreography. Once a week they are expected to attend a group session to dance the week's choreography together to music. At the start and end of the four-week study period, participants complete questionnaires with questions about well-being and social interactions.
What are the possible benefits and risks of participating?
Participants may benefit from being able to fit more physical activity into their day. There are no notable risks involved with participating.
Where is the study run from?
Curtin University (Australia)
When is study starting and how long is it expected to run for?
September 2016 to April 2017
Who is funding the study?
Curtin University (Australia)
Who is the main contact?
Dr Lucy Vincent
A Western Australian workplace well-being dance program for sedentary employees: a prospective cohort study with a qualitative component
Learning a complex movement every day and dancing the weekly series of new movements with other participants will improve physical and mental well-being and group bonding.
Curtin University’s Human Ethics Committee Approval, 03/10/2016, ref: HRE2016-0348
Prospective non randomised study
Primary study design
Secondary study design
Non randomised study
Quality of life
Patient information sheet
Not available in web format, please use the contact details below to request a patient information sheet
Physical and mental well-being and social bonding
After signing consent forms and demonstrating understanding of the introductory information, participants are added to the emailing list and invited to fill in the pre-study questionnaire via a Qualtrics anonymous link.
The exercise intervention start date is fixed at 2nd January 2017 and the end date at 27th January 2017.
The exercise program has been designed to provide small daily physical coordination challenges that could be met by practicing for one-two minutes several times a day, wearing normal office clothes and making use of available spaces such as offices, coffee rooms, photocopy area, meeting rooms, corridors etc. From 2nd January 2017 participants receive a new short, dance movement video link every morning Monday-Friday by email (Tuesday-Friday the first week). The video of each day’s movement demonstrates a 10-second segment of choreography designed to solicit the coordination of various neuromuscular groups. The series of five movement-segments from Monday to Friday made up a whole-body choreography that could be danced to music. Each week the new choreography corresponds to a different style of dancing: week 1, Disco; week 2, Bollywood; week 3, Salsa; week 4, Cha-Cha-Cha. An illustrated blog linked to a scientific article about the benefits of movement on body and brain functions is also sent every day to all participants at 2pm by email. Participants are told to practise the movement for one minute, once an hour. A Project Coordinator, present daily, normalises this new activity by practising the moves with participants in their working environment. A meeting is organiaed every Friday for all participants to come together to dance the choreography with music.
Data is collected via a previously evaluated questionnaire before or during Week One of the program and at the end of Week Four. The questionnaire collects information about the education, income, marital status, gender and age of the participant population as well as providing qualitative feedback. There are also questions designed to evaluate physical and mental well-being, personality traits, symptoms linked to depression and anxiety, self esteem, quality of life and connectedness to colleagues and the workplace. Participants access the questionnaires via an anonymous link to the Qualtrics website.
Primary outcome measure
Physical and mental well-being is measured using a questionnaire adapted for the purpose of this study but based on a previously used questionnaire at baseline and 4 weeks.
Secondary outcome measures
Subjective appreciation of the moves and their effects is measured using open-ended questions at the end of the study and using graded responses to a series of validated questions for well-being evaluation at baseline and 4 weeks.
Overall trial start date
Overall trial end date
Reason abandoned (if study stopped)
Participant inclusion criteria
1. All staff in the Health Sciences Faculty of a Western Australian University
2. Willing volunteers
3. No injuries
4. Have access to video attachments via email
Target number of participants
Participant exclusion criteria
2. No access to online videos via email
Recruitment start date
Recruitment end date
Countries of recruitment
Trial participating centre
University of Curtin
GPO Box U1987
Curtin University of Technology
Funding Body Type
private sector organisation
Funding Body Subtype
Results and Publications
Publication and dissemination plan
This study will give rise to three articles destined to be published in scientific peer-reviewed journals; one on the acceptability and adherence of the dance program, one on the effects on physical and mental well-being and one on the effects on social bonding with colleagues, employer and other participants.
IPD sharing statement:
The datasets generated during and/or analysed during the current study are/will be available upon request from Lucy Vincent (Lucy.Vincent@curtin.edu.au)
Intention to publish date
Participant level data
Available on request
Basic results (scientific)