Treadmill desks really exploded in popularity around 2007. That is when manufacturers started to market them effectively, pointing to all of the research which shows that standing is much healthier than sitting. Standing desks provide those same health benefits, and do not require the purchase or use of a treadmill. They are also generally less expensive than a treadmill desk.
There are some smart ways that you can work at a standing desk to reap the greatest health benefits … without your work productivity suffering. Keep the 5 following smart tips for working at a standing desk in mind, and you may just find yourself fit and trim as a result.
1 – Start Slowly
If you are a marathon runner and want to start running barefoot, you will probably take baby steps to get started. You would not go from one day to the next, wearing shoes and then shoeless while attempting an entire marathon. That could lead to injury.
The same can be true mentally and productivity-wise concerning working at a standup desk. Start slow, incorporating 1 or 2 hours each day working while you stand, slowly decreasing how often you sit.
2 – Practice Proper Form
Set up your standup desk where your forearms are parallel to the floor when they are resting on your desk. Position any computer or television monitor close enough so that you do not have to lean forward or stoop to view it properly. Keep your torso, legs and head vertically in line with each other. This will result in fewer aches and pains as you move from sitting to standing for extended periods of time.
3 – Shake, Rattle and Roll
Every hour, take a few minutes to shake your arms and legs, stretch and bend your joints, and roll your shoulders. Do some deep knee bends and pop off a few wrist curls if you have some barbells handy. This quick burst of exercise energizes you and allows you to stand for longer periods of time.
4 – Pretend You Are at the Bar
Bars and saloons have a footrest for very good reasons. Your back can become stiff if you stand in one position for too long. Take turns elevating one foot at a time, placing your foot on a stool, chair or other low-height support.
5 – Take a Hike … Literally
The reason why got a standing desk was to improve your health. Standing is healthier than sitting. And walking is even healthier than standing. If you are allowed breaks at work, take a walk around your building a couple of times a day. Or simply walk to deliver a message to a coworker rather than calling or e-mailing them.