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Walking While You Work

Research has shown that a sedentary lifestyle can contribute to many preventable causes of death, including cardiovascular disease and obesity. Now, research shows that even people who exercise regularly have increased risk of the same illnesses if they sit for more than four hours each day. Yet, as more employees’ jobs require them to spend their workdays in front of a computer, there are very real challenges to addressing the issue.

Enter the treadmill desk, a product first marketed approximately four years ago that now seems to be gaining wider acceptance.

The idea is largely credited to Dr. James Levine of the Mayo Clinic, who found that most people can use computers and talk on the phone while walking on a treadmill at a slow speed.

Several companies manufacture versions of the treadmill desk, including office furniture maker Steelcase, which makes a unit called the Walkstation that includes a desk and a custom treadmill. The treadmill, unlike conventional treadmills, has a max...

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