Need some tips for switching to a stand-up desk? Sitting for an extended period is hazardous to your health, and switching to an adjustable standing desk, a stand-up computer desk or something similar is a great way to spend more time on your feet, something that can lead to better overall health.
But you’ll only get the best results with the fewest hassles if you handle the switchover right. Here are seven useful tips for changing to a standing desk:
1. Experiment a bit. You can start by creating a simple stand-up test environment by putting a box or stand of some type on top of your existing desk and trying to do some work. This will get you used to the idea of working standing up. While a DIY standing desk can work for a while, you’ll eventually want to buy something sturdy and permanent, like an adjustable standing desk from a well-respected brand.
2. Carefully choose which one your buy. There are many non-adjustable and adjustable standing desks on the market, and some of them are quite expensive. It makes sense to pay a good price and get a good unit that will serve you well for many years. But don’t be taken in by the hype. Make sure the stand-up desk you choose has good reviews, comes from a respected brand and provides the right height or is adjustable.
3. Be ready for an adjustment period. Changing to a stand-up desk can cause some pain at first as your body adjusts to a new way of doing work. Expect a bit of discomfort. You’ll get the best results if you alternate frequently between sitting and standing at first. It can take as long as two weeks of this before you become accustomed to using a standing desk whenever you feel the urge to work standing up.
4. Always wear good shoes. You may have to sacrifice fashion for comfort when standing up to work. High-heeled shoes aren’t ideal for use with a stand-up desk, and neither are men’s dress shoes with little or no padding. You may want to keep both dress shoes and comfortable, well-cushioned shoes in your office so you can switch as needed.
5. Get an anti-fatigue floor mat. Nothing increases satisfaction with a stand-up desk more than an anti-fatigue floor mat. These padded mats take much of the pressure off the bottoms of your feet and therefore keep you from having knee, ankle and back pain from standing for much of your workday. And you’ll be able to stand up longer when you have the right padding. You’ll be amazed how much difference this makes.
6. Understand ergonomics. For best results, it helps to understand how ergonomics works. These design factors related to increasing productivity while decreasing fatigue will make a lot of sense to you when you study them — and understanding ergonomics means you can take action to make sure you benefit from the proven principles of this science. Details include holding arms at a 90-degree angle when typing, makings sure your monitor is at eye level and keeping your monitor at least an arm’s length away too.
7. Always think about posture. Standing up doesn’t help you when you do it wrong. When standing or sitting to work, focus on maintaining good posture. This strengthens your core and your back and allows you to work longer with less pain and fatigue. Think of yourself as upright, stretched out and being pulled from above to maintain the best possible posture no matter what you’re doing.
When you take to heart these 7 important tips about switching to an adjustable standing desk, stand-up computer desk or something similar, you’re well on your way to getting the most benefit from the experience.