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Workstations Encourage Students to Pedal While Studying

“Active workstations” in Clemson University’s Cooper Library and Academic Success Center are encouraging students and employees to get moving while studying or doing research.

Psychology professor June Pilcher, left, demonstrates the FitDesk. Image: Dayden Photography
Psychology professor June Pilcher, left, demonstrates the FitDesk. Image: Dayden Photography
“Active workstations” in Clemson University’s Cooper Library and Academic Success Center are encouraging students and employees to get moving while studying or doing research.

Researcher June Pilcher, Alumni Distinguished Professor of Psychology, is partnering with the library and the Academic Success Center on the project, which may lead to a change in how college campuses set up study areas for students. She and her Creative Inquiry students are setting up the workstations designed by FitDesk while gathering data for further research.

“One of my goals is to make it more efficient for the students to study,” Pilcher said. “Psychology-based research is increasingly clear. Humans learn best when they are moving; specifically, we learn best when moving and shortly after moving.”

The FitDesk is a combination of a stationary bicycle with a desk platform that allows the user to pedal while reading, using a computer or writing.

“We have the opportunity to research how low levels of activity could influence study performance,” Pilcher said. “There’s something very positive about the FitDesk, and I want to try to document this feeling and see how students use these desks on campus.”

Pilcher’s research focuses on the effects stress and fatigue have on performance and daily functioning, which have led her to examine student study areas and related cognitive performance. She joined the Clemson psychology faculty in 2001 and was awarded the Alumni Distinguished Professorship in 2009.

Recently, FitDesks invited Pilcher to Nashville as part of their nationwide healthcare campaign launch where they donated a roomful of their signature FitDesks to Glencliff High School.

FitDesks are currently setup in Cooper Library, room 108, and in the Academic Success Center. All are ready for use.

FitDesk is a performance exercise equipment line, including stationary bikes fitted with patent-pending desktops that allow users to comfortably work on a laptop, read a book, or play video games while enjoying the healthy benefits of an active lifestyle. FitDesk signifies the merging of health and productivity in today’s busy world. For more information, please visit FitDesk.net.Creative Inquiry is a unique program that gives Clemson University undergraduate students the opportunity to work on research projects that span disciplines and multiple semesters. Students work in teams with faculty mentors, take ownership of their projects and take the risks necessary to solve problems and get answers. Creative Inquiry participants develop critical thinking skills, learn to solve problems and hone their communication and presentation skills. For more information, go to www.clemson.edu/ci.Ranked No. 21 among national public universities, Clemson University is a major, land-grant, science- and engineering-oriented research university that maintains a strong commitment to teaching and student success. Clemson is an inclusive, student-centered community characterized by high academic standards, a culture of collaboration, school spirit and a competitive drive to excel.

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