We’ve all seen the alarming headlines in health news publications and social media. Sitting is the new smoking and it has all sorts of detrimental impacts on our overall health. As someone that spends a good eight to ten hours a day sitting in front of your desk, you may be wondering if it’s time to get a standing desk. I wish I had a clear answer for you, but frankly, it depends.
It depends on the work you do. For example, if you do a lot of writing while sitting at your desk, the words may simply not flow the same when you’re standing up. If on the other hand, much of your day, or at least part of your workday is spent reading and responding to email or looking over reports, a standing desk may work well for you.
Before you head out and buy an expensive new desk, give it a try. Grab some boxes, big books, or head to the garage and build a little shelf-like contraption that you can put on top of your existing desk. Try working standing up for a couple of days and see how you like it. If it works well for you, then you can invest in an actual standing desk.
Here’s an interesting idea. You don’t have to work exclusively from a standing desk to benefit from it. Why not try spending part of your workday standing up when the tasks lend themselves to this style of working and sit down the rest of the time. You can either add a shelf or boxes to your desk as outlined earlier or have a second desk that’s set up for working while standing up. Look around your office. You may already have a file cabinet that’s just the right height. If you’re working from a laptop, it’s easy to switch back and forth throughout the day as needed.
If you’re enjoining the standing desk, or are ready to try something else and move even more, you may want to look into a treadmill or stationary bike desks. You can work away while taking a slow stroll on your treadmill, or while riding a bike. A quick search online will show you some great examples of these active movement desks. If you’re on a budget, rig up a shelf on your existing treadmill, or buy a fairly inexpensive pedal attachment for your office chair that allows you to pedal away while you work.
If nothing else I want you to realize that sitting at a desk isn’t the only possible way to get work done. Experiment, try some new desk habits and see what works well for you.