When Dr James Levine once said that “sitting is the new smoking” people thought that he was being dramatic but medical research now proves his statement correct. This is because multiple studies echo the same statement and support that sitting for a long time can increase, obesity, the risk of heart disease, cancer, and also diabetes.
Once in a while, we are used to hearing an aging parent or someone close complains of pains and muscle aches mostly after trying out some sort of physical exercise. Often, we associate it with being unfit or just aging but not anymore. Research shows that office jobs where we spend lots of our time working could be the cause of all those pains and aches. Though the office has always been seen as a safe place and a less physically demanding place, people are now waking up to the reality that the office could be a place with impending diseases that could affect many people in years to come.
These hazards can have a horrible impact on our posture. It has been realized that ergonomic injuries such as pain in the back are responsible for almost 40% of work-related ill health, especially for those who sit for long hours slouching over the desk or being in front of the computer for long hours without breaking. The truth is that most of us have been victims of ergonomic injuries not knowing what to do next since we have been unaware of the cause of our pains and aches.
Slumping over your computer for hours and typing away with hunched shoulders not forgetting the boredom of just sitting still is just enough to drive you crazy but not any more thanks to the adjustable standing desk.
People working in an office setting have to derive ways to ease out into a habit of standing and sitting. It may not be easy to do all the tasks standing such as writing or doing rigorous research but there are those tasks that can be handled while standing quiet easily such as calling and receiving calls, video conferencing, and quick emails.
Adjustable desks are ideal for today's workplace because they allow workers to easily shift from seated to standing positions. They are guaranteed a healthier, more productive, and comfortable workspace environment for all that use them.
There is hope
A recent workplace study found that sedentary behavior that is typically experienced in most workplaces, especially offices could be eliminated by the use of adjustable standing desks. The research found that people who participated in the research over 12 months were more productive and experienced overall health.
Many organizations in many parts of the world are now campaigning for employers to offer sit-stand workstations to their workers. For example, Get Britain Standing has a mission to ensure that workers stand more in the workplace. This has also gained support from the public health England. Others who have followed suit and made the adjustable sit and stand desk a part of their workplaces are: Norway, Scandinavia, Finland, and Denmark. It is a legal requirement in Denmark. It is probably why Scandinavian countries top the list of the happiest places on mother earth!
It has therefore been concluded that standing at work had its benefits such as:
- Redaction in sitting: People who used height-adjustable desks at their place of work reported a 17% reduction in sitting within 3 months.
- Overall health: The people who opted to use the standing adjustable desks reported overall health and a reduction of shoulder, upper back, and neck discomfort
- User friendly: After 12 months of using the adjustable standing desks, they reported that they were easy to use and quite convenient.
- Increase in productivity: Better concentration and an increase in productivity were reported by 65% of the people who used adjustable standing desks within a year.
- Improvement outside work: It was reported that 65% of the people using the adjustable desks positively impacted their health away from the workplace.
The conclusion of the many other research as well as the one we have discussed is that the use of (AWS) Adjustable workstations reduces the sedentary lifestyle in and out of the workplace.
That said, we see so many advantages of using an adjustable standing desk especially where health is concerned. Exploring more on the benefits and advantages of using the adjustable workstations it has been realized that they do more than what we have mentioned above.
We all know that sitting for a whole day working ends up burning very few calories and this increases the risk of diabetes and heart disease. So the idea is to keep adjusting yourself in a way that you are comfortable and also take care that your body keeps on moving from time to time.
The adjustable standing desk is made in such a way that you can adjust it to your preferable height and it also gives you the alternative of standing and sitting. In recent times this desk has evolved from just an office novelty to a permanent fixture in today's workplaces.
Origin of Adjustable desks
You would be surprised but the truth is that some of the earliest users were people like Ernst Hemingway, Charles Dickens, and Winston Churchill. These were well-known individuals who were enthusiasts of writing at standing desks.
More benefits of using the adjustable standing desk at the workplace
- Standing prevents obesity:
If you are the kind that loves food and most of the time you eat more than you burn chances are that you are likely to be obese. We are not discouraging the love of food but the question is how to burn the calories that you gladly put in your body. Of course, hitting the gym is the most effective way but you may not have the time for the gym because of work. Choosing not to sit at work and taking the alternative of standing is ideal. Imagine a small study showing that you can burn around 170 calories by standing in a single afternoon! That is around 1000 calories burned in a week. Just like that. In that case, the choice of an adjustable standing desk becomes the best option for someone working in a traditional setting of an office.
- Standing lowers blood sugar
So you have eaten your favorite burger for lunch and your blood sugar has automatically increased without a thought of it. This is bad news for your health especially if you are the “eat and sit” type. The good news is that with the adjustable standing desk, you can now” eat and stand”. A study done with around 10 workers showed that blood sugar was reduced by around 43% for those who chose to stand after lunch rather than those who chose to sit. Movement within the office made it even better. Most people suffering from type 2 diabetes were linked to sitting after meals for long hours.
- Standing lowers the risk of heart disease
This research was realized back in 1953 when a study found out that bus conductors had half the risk of getting heart disease, unlike the drivers who sat all day. Since then heart health has been strongly associated with standing more than sitting and sitting for long has been seen as a way of increasing heart disease by up to 147%. For people at the workplace to prevent themselves from getting various heart issues, it is advised that they stand and move around for better heart health.
- Standing desks lowers back pain
Back pains are the most common pain experienced by most office workers who sit for long hours in front of their computers. A study done with workers who have had long-term back pain revealed that 32% of the same people reported tremendous improvement after using adjustable standing desks for several weeks. Neck pain also improved for those that had it after using the standing desks.
It is now on record that standing desks decrease chronic back pain if used for a minimum of two weeks.
- They help improve mood and energy
Standing desks are now being branded as energy boosters. This is because just using them on a dull afternoon can boost your energy levels and help improve your mood. Many who use them have reported that their stress levels have come down and they experience less fatigue since they started using them. Of course, it makes sense since withstanding the blood circulates more throughout the body.
- Standing more helps you live longer
That alone is a reason to want to use the standing desk. I mean who doesn’t want to live long and explore the world? Then the option of sitting doesn’t even come near of course unless you are unwell. Studies show that reducing the sitting time to 3 hours only per day would raise the average life expectancy of an adult by two years which is great news. Imagine now standing for even longer periods of time….
- Employees have more control over their workplaces.
Many companies have invested in adjustable desks as a way to support employees in the post- Covid period. During that period many workers were used to working from home where they enjoyed their own space and now returning to the office again where normalcy is the order of the day. However, since people have experienced the independence of working from their own space, they are now demanding more control over their working setting. Research by Steelcase discovered this as one of five vital factors that when addressed, will enhance how they view their company. More control over their experience at the workplace leaves them more satisfied and productive.
Height-adjustable standing desks give workers complete liberty to adjust their working area throughout the day to suit their preferences and needs. Some desks even enable workers to save their preferred settings to avoid them having to use a lot of time fiddling with them every time they move from standing to seated and vice versa. And in offices with a hot desking system in place, app-powered adjustable standing desks mean workers can have their desks set according to their preferred settings.
- They help support a dynamic, agile workplace
The adjustable standing desks support an active working environment by helping to support collaborative and a more dynamic environment. Increased movement and standing can lead to more communication and engagement throughout the workplace making it an interactive place. This helps in encouraging people to come back to the office as they progressively look for more flexibility. For example, many adjustable standing desks can be moved together for more collaboration. They can also be moved to a silent area depending on the work ahead.
Conclusion on the benefits of using an adjustable standing desk
Reducing your sitting time can improve mental, physical, and even metabolic health. This is standing more and sitting less is such an important lifestyle change, especially in the workplace. For starters If you would like to give it a try, visit any place that sells office furniture and have a look at what a stand-and-sit desk looks like. This is a recommendation that you can forward to your workplace administration to look at. It is also good to note that If you plan to start using an adjustable standing desk, it’s recommended you split your time equally between sitting and standing.
“There are plain simple ergonomic concepts that seem to be ignored. Many workers receive adjustable standing desks and start using them without prior instructions on how to use them. I reason proper usage will differ from one person to the other, and as we gather more information, we better learn how to able suggest the proper dosage for each person.” Said Dr. April Chambers of the University of Pittsburg.