Why Everyone Should Try a Standing Workspace
We all know that we should sit down less and move around more but, when you work in an office, long hours sitting at your desk, staring at a screen as you hypnotically type away are inevitable… or are they?
A study carried out by researchers from Loughborough University and the University of Leicester found that the health problems associated with sedentary behaviour are likely to have worsened. They site findings of a 2011 study which shows the average adult now spends 50-60% of their day in sedentary pursuits.
The study also showed that, in a typical working week, people spend an average of 5 hours and 41 minutes a day sitting at their desk. Too much time spent sitting can lead to risk of obesity, risk of Type 2 Diabetes and risk of cardiovascular disease.
One way in which we could reduce these risks is to stand while we work.
Standing desks are intended to reduce the amount of time spent sitting in today’s rather sedentary office environment.
The benefits of standing to work have been well documented in recent months, and include having more energy, more engagement with co-workers, improved posture and core strength and being ready for action.
In January, the Preventative Medicine Journal conducted a study into the use of standing desks.
I recently conducted my own standing desk experiment which saw me plonk a case and an old coffee table on top of my dressing table so that I could try using my computer to work while standing.
Of course, there are some downsides to standing to work – I personally found the sore legs and long days hard at first (it’s best to get into a routine where you mix standing with periods of sitting) but, despite learning the hard way to wear comfortable shoes rather than going bare foot, I really enjoyed the experiment and found myself being more productive.
After a little while, my dressing table/ coffee table hybrid was dismantled and replaces with Ikea furniture (thanks to an Ikea Hacks website!)
I am moving house soon, and have been looking to invest in a more robust, purpose built standing desk. I have become a firm believer that standing desks are great – not just for my health, but for my productivity. I will report on my next 'standing desk.'
Have you tried a standing workspace yet? If you have, I would love to hear what you thought!
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Dave Algeo, Stressed Guru is a speaker and writer committed to spreading the message - well-being and success need each other. Get in touch to find out how he can help your organisation develop greater success with wellbeing, or learn more about his speaking and workshops.