Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 3

Search results for: Tiina Luukkaala

3 An eHealth Intervention Using Accelerometer- Smart Phone-App Technology to Promote Physical Activity and Health among Employees in a Military Setting

Authors: Emilia Pietiläinen, Heikki Kyröläinen, Tommi Vasankari, Matti Santtila, Tiina Luukkaala, Kai Parkkola

Abstract:

Working in the military sets special demands on physical fitness, however, reduced physical activity levels among employees in the Finnish Defence Forces (FDF), a trend also being seen among the working-age population in Finland, is leading to reduced physical fitness levels and increased risk of cardiovascular and metabolic diseases, something which also increases human resource costs. Therefore, the aim of the present study was to develop an eHealth intervention using accelerometer- smartphone app feedback technique, telephone counseling and physical activity recordings to increase physical activity of the personnel and thereby improve their health. Specific aims were to reduce stress, improve quality of sleep and mental and physical performance, ability to work and reduce sick leave absences. Employees from six military brigades around Finland were invited to participate in the study, and finally, 260 voluntary participants were included (66 women, 194 men). The participants were randomized into intervention (156) and control groups (104). The eHealth intervention group used accelerometers measuring daily physical activity and duration and quality of sleep for six months. The accelerometers transmitted the data to smartphone apps while giving feedback about daily physical activity and sleep. The intervention group participants were also encouraged to exercise for two hours a week during working hours, a benefit that was already offered to employees following existing FDF guidelines. To separate the exercise done during working hours from the accelerometer data, the intervention group marked this exercise into an exercise diary. The intervention group also participated in telephone counseling about their physical activity. On the other hand, the control group participants continued with their normal exercise routine without the accelerometer and feedback. They could utilize the benefit of being able to exercise during working hours, but they were not separately encouraged for it, nor was the exercise diary used. The participants were measured at baseline, after the entire intervention period, and six months after the end of the entire intervention. The measurements included accelerometer recordings, biochemical laboratory tests, body composition measurements, physical fitness tests, and a wide questionnaire focusing on sociodemographic factors, physical activity and health. In terms of results, the primary indicators of effectiveness are increased physical activity and fitness, improved health status, and reduced sick leave absences. The evaluation of the present scientific reach is based on the data collected during the baseline measurements. Maintenance of the studied outcomes is assessed by comparing the results of the control group measured at the baseline and a year follow-up. Results of the study are not yet available but will be presented at the conference. The present findings will help to develop an easy and cost-effective model to support the health and working capability of employees in the military and other workplaces.

Keywords: accelerometer, health, mobile applications, physical activity, physical performance

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2 Communication Styles of Business Students: A Comparison of Four National Cultures

Authors: Tiina Brandt, Isaac Wanasika

Abstract:

Culturally diverse global companies need to understand cultural differences between leaders and employees from different backgrounds. Communication is culturally contingent and has a significant impact on effective execution of leadership goals. The awareness of cultural variations related to communication and interactions will help leaders modify their own behavior, and consequently improve the execution of goals and avoid unnecessary faux pas. Our focus is on young adults that have experienced cultural integration, culturally diverse surroundings in schools and universities, and cultural travels. Our central research problem is to understand the impact of different national cultures on communication. We focus on four countries with distinct national cultures and spatial distribution. The countries are Finland, Indonesia, Russia and USA. Our sample is based on business students (n = 225) from various backgrounds in the four countries. Their responses of communication and leadership styles were analyzed using ANOVA and post-hoc test. Results indicate that culture impacts on communication behavior. Even young culturally-exposed adults with cultural awareness and experience demonstrate cultural differences in their behavior. Apparently, culture is a deeply seated trait that cannot be completely neutralized by environmental variables. Our study offers valuable input for leadership training programs and for expatriates when recognizing specific differences on leaders’ behavior due to culture.

Keywords: communication, culture, interaction, leadership

Procedia PDF Downloads 46
1 Concentration and Stability of Fatty Acids and Ammonium in the Samples from Mesophilic Anaerobic Digestion

Authors: Mari Jaakkola, Jasmiina Haverinen, Tiina Tolonen, Vesa Virtanen

Abstract:

These process monitoring of biogas plant gives valuable information of the function of the process and help to maintain a stable process. The costs of basic monitoring are often much lower than the costs associated with re-establishing a biologically destabilised plant. Reactor acidification through reactor overload is one of the most common reasons for process deterioration in anaerobic digesters. This occurs because of a build-up of volatile fatty acids (VFAs) produced by acidogenic and acetogenic bacteria. VFAs cause pH values to decrease, and result in toxic conditions in the reactor. Ammonia ensures an adequate supply of nitrogen as a nutrient substance for anaerobic biomass and increases system's buffer capacity, counteracting acidification lead by VFA production. However, elevated ammonia concentration is detrimental to the process due to its toxic effect. VFAs are considered the most reliable analytes for process monitoring. To obtain accurate results, sample storage and transportation need to be carefully controlled. This may be a challenge for off-line laboratory analyses especially when the plant is located far away from the laboratory. The aim of this study was to investigate the correlation between fatty acids, ammonium, and bacteria in the anaerobic digestion samples obtained from an industrial biogas factory. The stability of the analytes was studied comparing the results of the on-site analyses performed in the factory site to the results of the samples stored at room temperature and -18°C (up to 30 days) after sampling. Samples were collected in the biogas plant consisting of three separate mesofilic AD reactors (4000 m³ each) where the main feedstock was swine slurry together with a complex mixture of agricultural plant and animal wastes. Individual VFAs, ammonium, and nutrients (K, Ca, Mg) were studied by capillary electrophoresis (CE). Longer chain fatty acids (oleic, hexadecanoic, and stearic acids) and bacterial profiles were studied by GC-MSD (Gas Chromatography-Mass Selective Detector) and 16S rDNA, respectively. On-site monitoring of the analytes was performed by CE. The main VFA in all samples was acetic acid. However, in one reactor sample elevated levels of several individual VFAs and long chain fatty acids were detected. Also bacterial profile of this sample differed from the profiles of other samples. Acetic acid decomposed fast when the sample was stored in a room temperature. All analytes were stable when stored in a freezer. Ammonium was stable even at a room temperature for the whole testing period. One reactor sample had higher concentration of VFAs and long chain fatty acids than other samples. CE was utilized successfully in the on-site analysis of separate VFAs and NH₄ in the biogas production site. Samples should be analysed in the sampling day if stored in RT or freezed for longer storage time. Fermentation reject can be stored (and transported) at ambient temperature at least for one month without loss of NH₄. This gives flexibility to the logistic solutions when reject is used as a fertilizer.

Keywords: anaerobic digestion, capillary electrophoresis, ammonium, bacteria

Procedia PDF Downloads 112