With the rising popularity of ergonomic offices, more employees are realizing the importance of standing at work. Whether you invest in an office desk or a treadmill desk, consider jumping on the trend if you haven’t already. After all, doing so helps you combat heart disease, obesity, neck pain, and back pain!
Most of these health issues stem from sitting for hours on end. So naturally, the simplest solution to break out of this sedentary lifestyle is to start standing more. You will find this particularly beneficial if you don’t often get the time for a gym workout.
This article will provide you with deeper insight into the benefits of standing and the right way to do so. Yes, there is a wrong way of standing while working, so read on to know more!
The Benefits of Standing at Work: Why Should You Stand At Work?
Working standing up can have a plethora of benefits that start with eliminating the ill effects of sitting. Besides, it can also help increase your productivity. However, these tidbits may not be enough for you, so here is a whole list of benefits from standing up at work.
1. Reduces Risk Of Weight Gain And Obesity
In comparison to sitting, you burn over 170 calories when using a standing desk for the same amount of time. Think about it; that way, you end up burning nearly 1000 calories merely from standing at your desk! This calorific distinction is likely why sitting is responsible for obesity and metabolic disease.
2. Lowers Blood Sugar Levels
Studies prove that standing for around 180 minutes after a lunch break can help decrease blood sugar spikes. Some researchers say that switching between sitting and standing all through the day can have a similar effect. This increase in blood sugar levels from sitting is likely why it is strongly linked with type 2 diabetes.
3. Reduces Back Pain
Most office workers either suffer from back pain themselves or know someone who does. However, studies show that standing can help reduce lower back pain within a matter of weeks. Similar results can also have been seen with neck pain as well.
In the same study, the removal of standing desks resulted in a reversal of improvements in only two weeks!
4. Boosts Mood And Energy Levels
The benefits of standing at work go beyond physical improvements. Yes, it can enhance your overall well-being. Standing up at work can help relieve some of the stress and fatigue you may be feeling from sitting for long hours. Simultaneously, it can fill you up with the energy and vigor to take on any challenge.
5. Improves Productivity
A common misconception about standing while working is that it can make tasks like typing more challenging. However, this is far from the truth. Naturally, the change can take some getting used to, but it causes no significant hindrances to daily tasks.
When you consider that standing improves mood and energy levels, it seems it is more likely to enhance productivity.
6. Can Extend Your Lifespan
Did you know that studies prove a link between prolonged sitting and early death? Scary as it is, this is simply the result of an inactive or sedentary lifestyle. Not to mention, sitting is a known cause for several chronic conditions, from diabetes to heart disease.
Standing, however, can alleviate such risk factors making you healthier. So naturally, it can also help increase your life expectancy.
7. Reduces The Risk Of Heart Disease
As far back as 953, studies showed that sitting has a direct relationship with heart disease. Prolonged sitting can evidently raise the risk of heart disease by almost 147%! Even an entire hour of intense working out can eliminate the damage done by one day of sitting. So without a doubt, standing is the way to go if you want to prevent this health issue.
The Method: How To Stand While Working
The easiest way to start standing at work is if you invest in a stand-up desk. However, a desk can only do so much for you. There are a few practices you need to employ to ensure you maintain the right posture as well. So here are a few helpful pointers:
● Ensure your screen is between 20-28 inches away from your eyes at a 20-degree tilt.
● The desk height must be either at or a little under your elbow level.
● Place elbows at a 90-degree angle to the keyboard.
● You should be looking slightly down at the monitor.
● Make sure that your head, neck, and spine are in a straight line.
As you may notice, this setup isn’t the most ideal if you’re planning to work on a laptop. So if that is the case, consider investing in a standalone keyboard and mouse. That way, it will be easier for you to adjust the screen and peripherals to the recommended height.
Just as sitting too long is bad for you, so is standing for hours on end. The key is to strike up an optimal balance between the two. Stand for a while, sit, then stand again, and repeat this process throughout your workday.
Initially, you can try standing for 30 minutes a couple of times a day. As you get more comfortable, you can increase the time you spend standing at work to one or two hours. Consider wearing flat shoes without heels for extra comfort. You may also stand on a cushioned mat now and then for support.
Another practice to follow is to leave your desk every 30 minutes or so for a walk. Whether you use this time to grab a drink or catch up with a coworker, stretch your limbs a bit. You may be standing more, but that doesn’t mean you should completely skip out on exercise!
If you want to lead a healthy and productive life, you need to give up on sedentary activities. That includes sitting for hours at a stretch though it may feel more comfortable.
Studies even prove that exercise one day before or after a long day of sitting cannot mitigate its ill effects. That means including some amount of activity as you work is not just an option; it's a necessity. Standing up at work is the most effortless way you can do this, so take a stand!
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