So much better for employees overall health, well-being, and, ultimately, productivity – studies support standing while doing desk work.
Increasingly, employees who work hours upon hours of desk work every day are more likely to complain of chronic pain. Issues such as postural imbalance, repetitive strain injuries, and a sedentary lifestyle – or, ‘sitting disease’ – are more common than ever before.
In the United States, a whopping 7.6 million people list back pain as their reason for filing disability claims. Research confirms that slouching and similar seated postures can be responsible for backaches, headaches, fatigue, and poor concentration – issues that affect not only physical health but vital productivity at work as well.
Fortunately, there’s a solution to help reverse the physical discomfort and damage caused by sitting day after day: the standing desk.
Standing while working helps to counter the adverse effects associated with hours spent sitting at a desk. Even just 30 minutes at a time (4 hours a day or more) standing while at work can have significant impact on the health and body of desk-bound employees.
Sit-Stand desks, also known as standing or height-adjustable desks, are becoming more and more popular in the workplace. For good reason: they make it very easy for those workers whose work is concentrated at a desk to change posture throughout the day while they work.
Being able to change posture throughout the day, moving from sitting to standing, promotes a variety of benefits as listed below.
1. Reduce Back Pain
80% of adults will experience varying degrees of back pain at some point in their lives. It’s also one of the biggest complaints of office workers who are seated all day. In addition to the studies that have explored the positive impact of standing desks for office workers with long-term back pain, the Take-a-Stand Project found that participants who spent an average of 66 minutes of their workday standing experienced a 54% reduction in the upper back and neck pain.
Image courtesy the Take-A-Stand Project
2. Lower your Risk of Heart Disease
Researchers have been studying the benefits of standing for over 60 years. A 1953 study of bus conductors found that those who stood all day experienced half the risk of heart disease-related deaths of seated drivers. Findings showed that a sedentary lifestyle is linked to a 90% increase in the risk of cardiovascular mortality and a 147% increase in the risk of cardiovascular events.
3. Lower Risk of Weight Gain and Obesity
More than 44% of office workers say they have gained weight in their present job, and 53% of those said they believed it was due to sitting at a desk all day. By standing instead of sitting, it’s possible to reduce the risk of weight gain by burning about 50 extra calories an hour. If an employee were to stand for 3 hours each workday, it could equate to 750 calories a week. Over a full year that could mean 30,000 extra calories expended or about 8 pounds of fat!
4. Lower Blood Sugar Levels and Risk of Type 2 Diabetes
Blood sugar increases have are often linked to a general sense of poor health. In 2013, a small study of 10 office workers showed that standing for 185 minutes after lunch reduced the workers’ blood sugar levels by 43% compared to sitting for the same time period. Another study of 23 overweight office workers found that alternating standing and sitting every 30 minutes reduced blood sugar spikes by an average of 11.1%.
5. Increase Energy and Improve Mood
Increased sedentary time and sitting have been linked to an increased risk of both depression and anxiety. During the Take-a-Stand Project a group of 24 office workers was provided with a standing desk for four weeks. Participants self-reported improved mood states where they reduced time spent sitting by an average of 66 minutes. At the end of the 4-week period, responses were as follows as a result of having the sit-stand device installed at their workstations:
- 87% felt more comfortable,
- 87% felt energized,
- 75% felt healthier,
- 71% felt more focused,
- 66% felt more productive,
- 62% felt happier, and
- 33% felt less stressed
When the sit-stand desks were removed, the participants reported a deterioration in mood.
6. Boost Your Productivity
Of primary interest to employers is the increase in productivity experienced by standing desk workers. Enhanced mood and energy, in addition to reduced back, shoulder, and neck pain tends to improve productivity and mental alertness. When the body as a whole feels better, it functions more efficiently and productively.
A Bestar Standing Desk offers optimal comfort! The height of our standing desks is so easy to adjust that you can change it several times a day to work in the most comfortable position. The electric mechanism allows you to quickly and quietly adjust the height of the table from 28″ to 45″.
Healthier work life isn’t the only benefit. The improvements in physical, metabolic, and mental health from standing at work for more extended periods can impact your life in ways you never thought possible.