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8 Ways to Fight Fatigue While Standing at Work

11 July 2023

Sitting is the new smoking. It leads to several health concerns ranging from obesity to increased blood sugar, high blood pressure, musculoskeletal disorders, and much more. As a result, standing is now a popular way to stay productive and healthy.

However, like prolonged sitting, extended periods of standing come with several health challenges. It can result in low back pain, stiffness in the shoulder and neck, and sore feet. But most commonly, prolonged standing is associated with fatigue.

If you have switched from a conventional sitting work setup to a workstation that allows you to stand while working, you need to know how to fight fatigue associated with prolonged standing at work.

Here are eight ways to fight fatigue while standing at work. Moreover, we share an insight into the best practices for how often you should sit, stand and move throughout the day.



1. Maintain the Neutral Body Posture While Standing

While standing, maintaining a neutral body posture is the key to remaining productive all day while getting all the benefits from standing. If you continue to stand while maintaining an inappropriate posture, over time, it can contribute to long-term muscle damage and damage to your joints, ligaments, tendons, and nerves. Hence, maintaining an inappropriate posture while standing can result in musculoskeletal disorders, including arthritis and herniated discs.

However, only a few individuals know how to maintain a good standing posture. Here's what a good standing posture looks like.

Ensure that your shoulders are even and relaxed with your chin parallel to the floor,

Your spine should be straight and neutral with no arching or flexing, and your hips should be even and not bulged out,

Make sure your core muscles are engaged and

Your body weight is evenly distributed on both your feet.

If your job requires you to lift the weight, then it's also critical for you to know how to maintain proper lifting posture. When carrying weight, make sure you balance the weight of the lifted object so that it is evenly distributed between your arms. Moreover, you should lift the weight with your feet bent at the knees to ensure that the lifting doesn't strain your spine.



2. Invest in Appropriate Footwear

As most of the body weight is borne by your feet, you need to invest in footwear featuring proper arch and sole support, as it helps ease tension in your muscles, tendons, and ligaments.

A good pair of shoes from a reliable supplier can go a long way to fight fatigue while standing at work. You can find different types of shoes ranging from comfortable sneakers to running shoes and professional clogs that feature appropriate cushioning. However, in a professional setting, your choice of footwear will be influenced by the dress code at your workplace.

Moreover, you must remember that you can use compression stockings and shoe inserts to manage the adverse effects of standing for long time periods.



3. Change Your Position Often

As with all things in life, change is the only constant. If your job requires you to stand and work, it's critical that you change your position often to avoid the adverse effects of prolonged standing on your health.

Standing aids in burning calories enhances your productivity, and engages your core and thigh muscles; however, prolonged standing can lead to lower backache, varicose veins, cardiovascular issues, and more.

So what is the solution?

The solution lies in changing your position often. You should alternate between sitting, standing, and walking throughout your workday. When you constantly change your posture, you can enjoy all the benefits of standing while working without overexerting yourself.

One of the recommended ratios of managing time between sitting, standing, and moving that shows a 30-minute activity break up is as follows:

Standing for 8-10 minutes,

Sitting for 20 minutes and

Moving for 2 minutes.



4. Change the Way You Stand

Just like it's recommended to alternate between sitting, and standing, it's also suggested that you should vary the way you stand.

You shouldn't constantly be standing in the same rigid posture throughout the day. Instead, you can change the way you stand from time to time, which will help you engage different muscle groups, contributing to reducing muscle fatigue while standing at work.

You can use an anti-fatigue mat or a footstool that can help you shift your weight between your legs as you stand, which will help you fight fatigue while standing at work.



5. Incorporate Stretching into Your Workday

As you look for ways to fight fatigue while standing, don't forget that stretching is vital in managing fatigue. It alleviates the weight on the spine that comes with maintaining the same posture and gives your muscles a much-needed break.

Since standing in the same position adversely affects your blood flow, stretching and moving around enables healthy blood circulation throughout your body, including your upper body. It also aids in preventing specific workplace-related injuries, including tendinitis, varicose veins, and carpal tunnel syndrome.

Some of the stretches that you can try while standing at work include

Neck and shoulder roll,

Wrist and finger stretch,

Forward fold chest opener,

Standing quad stretch and

Ear-to-shoulder stretch.



6. Practice Strengthening Exercises Outside of Work

Apart from stretching at work, you also need to practice strengthening exercises outside work. By incorporating physical activity outside work, you can strengthen your core muscles that help stabilize the pelvis and spine. With a stronger core, you can look forward to improved posture and lower fatigue, especially when standing at work.

Some of the exercises you can try out outside work to strengthen your core muscles include planks, leg extensions, and lunges.



7. Invest in an Ergonomic Office Chair

An ergonomic office chair makes a critical piece of investment that will help you fight fatigue while standing at work.

As you modify your position from standing to sitting, the use of an ergonomic office chair allows you to maintain a neutral body posture while sitting. Moreover, it offers a supportive sitting position that provides appropriate cushioning to your back and hips so you can sit comfortably every time you switch your position from standing to sitting.

Furthermore, ergonomic office chairs feature adjustability options that allow you to find the most comfortable sitting position when you switch your working position from standing to sitting.

You can find some of the most reliable ergonomic office chairs here.



8. Choose a Reliable Height-Adjustable Standing Desk

If your job requires you to stand for longer hours while providing you opportunities for frequently changing your position to sitting, it's best to invest in a reliable height-adjustable standing desk.

A height-adjustable standing desk allows you to alternate your workstation's height from sitting to standing and vice versa.

Of the various types of height-adjustable standing desks available on the market, you need to find the one that offers the maximum benefits. The Essential Standing Desk (E2 Pro) makes one of the most reliable height-adjustable standing desks you can find on the market. The bestselling model by FlexiSpot allows you to seamlessly switch between sitting and standing modes so your posture can easily be changed. Moreover, it helps fight fatigue and reduce lower back stress.

However, you should remember that when using a height-adjustable standing desk, make sure you take short breaks to incorporate movement. Moreover, you can also invest in accessories like anti-fatigue mats to enhance your comfort while standing at work. Learn more about height-adjustable standing desks and other ergonomic workplace accessories here.

Final Words - It's Not All About Standing

There's an increasing focus on changing workspaces to facilitate standing as opposed to sitting. While research suggests that standing comes with several health benefits compared to sitting, don't miss the point that prolonged standing can be as dangerous as prolonged sitting. Hence, you need to know the measures that can help you fight fatigue while standing at work.

By maintaining a good standing posture, wearing appropriate footwear, and changing your position several times throughout the day, you can fight fatigue while standing at work. Moreover, by incorporating several types of stretches into your routine, you can strengthen your muscles and enable them to fight fatigue associated with prolonged standing.

Furthermore, you can effectively maintain your posture throughout the day by investing in appropriate ergonomic furniture, including an ergonomic office chair and a height-adjustable standing desk.

We hope that you will try out these ways to fight fatigue while standing at work and improve your overall health and well-being.