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4 Amazing Tips for Using a Standing Desk

For several years, experts around the world have been warning about the dangers of a sedentary lifestyle at work. Sitting behind a desk all day could lead to serious health problems and even drastically reduce life span. One of the solutions to this public health problem is to propose ergonomic alternatives to the traditional desk. And many companies and individuals are starting to adopt adjustable desks, also known as standing desks, as a solution.

Standing desks are new concepts within workplaces that aim to prevent health problems related to bad posture, but in particular, sitting for a long time. According to BJM, sitting too much is linked to around 70,000 deaths every year in the UK.. A standing desk UK allow you to alternate  between sitting and standing positions as you wish, and thus, limits these sedentary behaviours.

In this article, our experts share their top tips for using a standing desk to help you get the most out of yours. So, let's get started.

Why Use a Standing Desk?

The use of a standing desks began shortly after the publication of a 2010 study by the American Cancer Society which was published in the American Journal of Epidemiology. According to this study, a woman who sits for more than 6 hours a day has a 37% higher risk of dying prematurely than a woman who sits for less than 3 hours a day. As for men, the findings of this study are the same, since 18% have a greater chance of dying if they spend more than six hours sitting up.

This research by the American Cancer Society is based on data from people who sit at home. However, other studies, conducted by European researchers, have come to the same conclusions. Since then, it is considered that office work can be performed standing if the furniture allows it, and this would reduce the risk of premature death due to prolonged periods of sitting down.

What Are the Health Benefits of Standing Desks?

Several studies show that the use of a sit stand desk provides several health benefits. The main benefit is that alternating between sitting and standing on a regular basis reduces the physical risks associated with prolonged sitting, such as muscle tension, muscle loss and back pain.

In addition to the fact that a standing desk reduces the frequent sources of discomfort and pain, it can also reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes and some types of cancer that are linked with prolonged sitting.  

Another important benefit is that changing between sitting and standing contributes to the breakdown of fat and sugars, which in turn reduces the risk of weight gain.

And finally, changing posture regularly improves your body's blood circulation and oxygenation of the brain, which makes you more alert, concentrated, and less prone to distraction, which can improve focus and productivity levels.

How to Use Your Standing Desk

For several years now, companies have been acquiring furniture adapted to sitting and standing working positions, which are available to all employees who wish to test this new way of work. If you also wish to equip yourself with an standing desk to take advantage of its health benefits, here are some tips that will allow you to use your standing desk properly.

1.     Adjust Your Desk and Monitor

Proper desk height and computer monitor position are fundamental to improving comfort and minimizing the risk of office injuries. To start, adjust the height of your standing desk to about elbow height. This means that your elbows should be at approximately 90 degrees to the floor. As a rule of thumb, the average person (height of 5'11" or 180 cm) should have their desk at height of 111 cm (44").By doing these adjustments, your keyboard will be accessible without the need of bending over to it. 

The position of your feet is also crucial to improve your posture and relieve your lower back. To achieve this, it is recommended to have your feet flat on the floor. When standing up, a standing desk mat can also reduce discomfort, fatigue and pain that might otherwise occur when standing for extended periods. 

Concerning the screens of our computers, we all tend to place them too low. This position engages the muscles of the neck and back too much to sustain the inclination of the head. However, it is very important to take into account that our head represents about 8% of our body weight. While recommendations for screen position are not black and white, the general consensus is to have it at 20 to 28 inches (51 to 71 cm) from your face. As a quick reference, the distance shouldn't be less than from the tip of your middle finger to your elbow. Moreover, the top of your screen should be at eye level, with a small upward tilt of between 10 and 20 degrees. The idea is that you should never need to tilt up or down your neck.

You may require a laptop stand or monitor arm to set your monitor at the correct height.

2.     Alternate Regularly Between Sitting and Standing Positions and Do It Gradually

On average, we spend between 60% and 80% of our days sitting in an office. This time spent sitting affects our health, so it is strongly recommended to alternate between sitting and standing every 30 to 60 minutes.

It's quite clear that you won't be able to change your work habits overnight, especially if you've spent the past 15 years sitting at your desk without getting up. You have to start gradually in order to reach an optimal ratio between your sitting and standing position. It's okay if you don't get it right the first time and don't achieve your goals from the start. After all, nobody would try to lift a 150 kg barbell on their first visit to the gym! So don't be so unrealistic and disappointed if you don't reach the endurance threshold you set for yourself on day one.

Instead, set an attainable goal, such as successfully working on your feet for 1 hour a day at first, 15 to 20 minutes at a time. The worst thing you can do is strain your body and give up before you've even really started. You can slowly increase the amount of time you spend standing by 2 to 10 minutes per week until you feel more comfortable standing for longer periods of time and get to the ideal ratio for you.

3.     Make Sure You Have Good Posture When Standing and Sitting

Poor sitting position increases the stress on the discs and vertebrae of your back and therefore leads to back pain. When sitting then, your back must be constantly supported by the back of your chair. In order for it to adapt to the shape of your back, the backrest should also have a curved shape and be padded, and have lumbar support so that the discs and vertebrae of the back are not put under pressure. Since the majority of back pain is caused by a combination of sedentary habits and poor posture, sitting prooperly at your desk and investing in an ergonomic office chair will help you reduce the health risks related to your sitting position.

When you work standing at a desk, you need to make sure you maintain the right posture. To do this, stand in front of your desk with your shoulders back, keeping your arms relaxed at your sides. Try not to lock your knees while maintaining a slight bend. Following these tips will prevent them from hyperextending or locking their joints, which may otherwise lead to injury. Keeping your spine in a neutral position is the ideal posture to adopt when working in a standing position. 

In addition to the possibility of moving from sitting to standing posture, you can add movements to your routine - such as a treadmill, Pilates ball, balance board, mini elliptical or bicycle trainer - in order to improve blood flow, breathing, digestion and burn more calories. An ergonomic chair or posture ball is another great alternative to keep your core engaged, improve your posture, and promote movement. 

4.     Change the Position of Your Keyboard and Mouse

Working long hours in front of the computer can make your wrists tired. Therefore, it is essential to optimize your wrist position when sitting or standing.

The ideal angle when standing is slightly wider (tilted upward) than when sitting. To protect your wrists when standing, always keep your mouse and keyboard level and your wrists straight when typing. If you still experience occasional wrist pain, consider using an ergonomic wireless mouse, adjustable keyboard support and a gel mouse pad for optimal support.


The well-documented risks associated with prolonged sitting have highlighted the importance and benefits of using a standing desk. Indeed, we know that regular alternation between sitting and standing positions significantly reduces the physical risks of sitting down and offers several health benefits, too.

It's important to note that, whether you are sitting or standing, you need to adopt a proper posture. The best posture is to stand up straight, with your back, neck and head in front of the computer. 

By following these tips, you will be able to take advantages of the health benefits offered by a standing desk.

Looking for a standing desk for your home, office or workspace? Check out our collection of standing desks, available for next working day delivery if ordered by 3pm. Our desks come with a 7 year warranty, 30 day risk free return, as well as access to a UK-based customer service team to answer any questions that you might have.

Date Published: September 27, 2022

Last Updated: January 17, 2024