Sit Stand Desks; First Hand Experience

A year ago, Carol wrote a blog about the benefits of standing at work – now I can give you my first-hand experience of them.

Three weeks ago we had new electric sit stand desks delivered. To my surprise, I’m really using it, as is everyone else in the office. My first discovery was that (being something of a shorty) a slightly lower desk height is comfortable for me to sit at – something I had never previously had the opportunity to try. I like to sit when I arrive in the morning, enjoy my first coffee and read through my emails, once sitting I tend to get comfy and forget that I have the ability to stand up. Then, maybe a couple of hours into my day, I realise I’m no longer comfortable, perhaps my concentration is dipping, and I remember that I can stand up. This awakens me and I enjoy being able to stretch my spine, I’ll stand till lunch (eaten sitting down). The rest of the afternoon is spent going up and down a few more times, each time spurred on by the realisation I’m no longer comfortable.

I’ve done a spot of research into ‘how to stand at a desk’, the main points seem to be:

  • to ensure you have the desk, monitor and keyboard at the recommended heights
  • to gradually increase the time spent standing
  • to vary your standing position (I will interpret that as it being ok to do a spot of leaning)
  • to choose good footwear (today I’m in my orthopaedic sandals – hoping my colleagues don’t notice them under my skirt)
  • to swap between sitting, standing and walking

I often stick earphones in my ears and listen to music to help my concentration while at work – I now sway to the music, I’m convinced this will benefit my posture and my calorie usage, but it does make me look just very slightly mad to my colleagues!

The general consensus amongst all of us here is that these new desks have been a complete success. I’ll write another update in a year – see if we’re using them to a greater or lesser extent than now.

By Kathryn Butterworth – Interior Designer

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