How to Make Standing Desks Work for You
April 20, 2021
You might want to sit down for this one, but a sit-stand work desk might just be the best investment you’ve never made.
For many folks, going against their genetic predisposition for the sedentary lifestyle could be too high a price to pay. But, is it worth more than your health and wellbeing? We thought so too.
Here are some of the ways in which you can supercharge your productivity with height adjustable desks for your WFH routine, or the workplace, because why would you do it any other way?
Get the Height Right of the Standing Desk
Choosing an ergonomic standing desk alone is not enough to get the most from it. One of the perks of investing in a standing desk for work is that it can be comfortably adjusted to any height. As a rule of thumb, you should make sure that the desk is adjustable from 22 inches to 33 inches in height, which means that it can be used by pretty much anyone.
Having the correct desk height is crucial to improving your comfort level while you’re working and can help minimize the risk of injuries. It is recommended to set the standing desk at around elbow height, which means that your elbows should maintain a 90-degree position with relation to the floor.
For instance, for the average person with a height of 5’11, the standing desk would need to be 44 inches high. Since most standing desks are going to have a laptop or PC placed on it, it’s recommended to keep all screens at least 20 to 28 inches away from your eyes to prevent any strain. This will also allow you to work for longer periods.
To ensure that you get the distance right, try this; touch the screen of your laptop or PC that’s on the standing desk with your index finger; the distance should not be more than your finger and elbow. But to make sure you get the most out of your standing desk in terms of comfort and productivity, you need to make sure that the top of the screen is eye level and has a slight upwards tilt of around 20 degrees. Doing this means you will not have to tilt your neck either up or down while working on the standing desk.
It’s also important to keep your arms at a comfortable length when using standing desks. Most users find the ideal ergonomic level of their standing desk is when their arms are kept at a 45-degree angle, which makes it easier to use the standing desk.
Get an Anti-Fatigue Mat
Since you will be standing at the desk for an extended period of time, you will need to invest in anti-fatigue mats that are commonly used when jobs require standing for a prolonged period of time. The mats are designed to combat standing fatigue, allowing you to stand for long periods without feeling any pain or discomfort in your feet, knees and lower back.
The mats achieve this by not providing 100% stability while standing, which encourages subtle movements of the leg muscles. This, in turn, helps improve blood circulation and minimizes the chances of pain or discomfort.
According to a study, those who stand for two or more hours on an anti-fatigue mat report less tiredness and fatigue as compared to those who do not use anti-fatigue mats. The anti-fatigue mats are also beneficial for those who experience lower back or leg pain while standing.
An anti-fatigue mat works like insoles for your feet which feels great, especially when you’re barefoot, as compared to standing on tiles or hardwood flooring where your feet would feel sore and ache easily. Besides, if you were sitting all day, you’d want a chair that was comfortable, so if you will be standing, it makes sense to invest in an anti-fatigue mat to keep your feet comfortable as well.
Use the Standing Desk for Stretching
Just because you’re using a standing desk does not mean all you have to do is work. You can use this opportunity to stretch your legs and parts of the body, which would not be possible while sitting down. If you have decided to use a standing desk, then chances are, you’re already interested in staying fit.
Some of the ways in which you can stretch at the standing desk are by standing on one leg or doing a quad stretch. You can also stretch your calves and your arms. Just make sure you’re not in the middle of a Zoom meeting when you try these stretching exercises.
Pick a Schedule
You’ll probably be working a full 8-hour shift whether you’re at home or the workplace. Obviously, you won’t be standing the entire time, which is why you should pick a schedule for standing that works best for you. If you have a predictable work schedule, then you can take advantage of that predictability to supercharge your productivity with height adjustable desks.
For instance, if you have Zoom meetings on a regular basis, then try to stand during those meetings, which will not only give you good posture for the screen but will also keep you mentally sharp since you’ll be on your toes. On the other hand, maybe you prefer taking on the day standing, in which case, you can start off your workday standing while taking short breaks at regular intervals.
When using a standing desk, it is best to figure out a schedule that works for you and stick with it. Whether or not you want to stand before or after lunch, it’s totally up to you. Just don’t keep standing for long extended periods of time, which could end up having negative implications on the health of your back and legs.
Don’t Get Tangled Up in Cables
If you tend to have many cables around, you should consider keeping all of the cables neat and organized so that they don’t get in the way while you’re transiting from sitting to standing on the desk. The last thing you want is to trip on power cables or pull a cord out of its socked while you’re adjusting to the standing desk. The cable management system that you use is mainly going to depend on the number of cables you will be working with until you transition to a full wireless workstation.
Be Mindful of Your Equipment
In the same vein, it is also important for you to be mindful of the devices and equipment that’s on, around and under the standing desk. More often than not, people fail to pay attention to what’s under the standing desk, which could result in a tragedy if you knock something over by accident. Whether you are using a standing desk that has a manual crank or a button, it’s best to always check around and under the desk before adjusting its height to avoid breaking something.
Find a Chair that Compliments the Standing Desk
Many people make the mistake of focusing too much on the standing desk and not on the next most important component of your workstation or home-office setup. If you haven’t guessed it already, we are talking about the chair you choose to go with the standing desk.
When choosing a work chair, it is important to note that the majority of work chairs are meant for sitting (duh!). Choosing a chair that allows you to use it with a regular desk along with a standing desk by sitting in a higher position is a great choice. When choosing the right chair for your standing desk, make sure that it can be adjusted to a higher height to make it easier for you to sit down while working on the standing desk.
For those who are tight on space, you can also choose a stool. Just make sure that it is an adjustable and ergonomic work stool, which will help you make quick transiting from a sitting to a standing position.
As more and more of us come to the realization that the WFH routine could be here to stay a bit longer than we’d expected, it pays to make your home office more comfortable and ergonomic. This is where the standing desk shines since it offers the kind of versatility that’s simply not found in traditional workstations. The best part is the standing desks are available in different sizes and designs, so finding the perfect home office-sized desk should not be difficult.
On the flip side, in those states where lockdown restrictions have been lax, with some of the workforce having to go to the office, it’s time you gave your work desk a promotion and supercharges your productivity with height adjustable desks.
Sitting down for a while is okay too, just as long as you don’t stay down. The standing desk by FlexiSpot will make sure that doesn’t happen. So, if you’re the type of person who prefers to meet the day standing, then a stand desk should be right up your alley.
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