Testing messages to promote stair climbing at work

Erica Thomas, anna puig ribera, Anna Senye-Mir, Sheila Greenfield, Francis Eves

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


– Worksites have been targeted as an important setting for physical activity interventions. A recent emphasis for health promoters is the use of point-of-choice interventions to encourage stair climbing at work. The purpose of this paper is to explore three point-of-choice campaigns to increase stair climbing at work.
– Ten focus groups and a rating task were conducted with 59 employees from a University and a University Hospital in the UK. Focus groups were structured around three messages and four prompts and sought to explore the motivational power of the resources, identify factors contributing to their effectiveness and provide recommendations to improve and optimize content. Benefits and barriers to stair climbing at work were also explored. Focus groups were recorded, transcribed and coded to identify key themes.
– Intra-personal factors health, motivation, social norms and time management influence stair climbing at work. Critically, extra-personal factors associated with the worksite itself can also bias a traveler’s choice independently of any intervention. Results suggest that messages targeting heart health have the greatest impact on reported propensity to climb the stairs at work. Messages targeting rate of respiration for fitness, however, may have a negative effect given that most people want to avoid getting out of breath at work.
– Qualitative research is essential for developing and refining the design detail of point-of-choice interventions and tailoring their components to address individuals’ needs in different settings but there is little evidence of this in practice.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)189-205
JournalInternational Journal of Workplace Health Management
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2015


  • Stair climbing
  • Workplace health
  • Qualitative research
  • Psychological research
  • Public health
  • Wellness interventions


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