Standing Desk – Does It Increase Productivity?

Standing desks have been gaining popularity over the years due to the health benefits they offer.

Sitting for a long time is associated with conditions such as cardiovascular diseases, musculoskeletal diseases, weight gain, diabetes, lower back pain, shoulder and neck pain.

Standing desks have gained popularity among office workers and employers because they help increase productivity.

I have done a lot of research on standing desks. I am sharing everything I learned on this website. In this article, we will go over the question and evidence about increasing productivity while using a standing desk.

Do Standing Desks Help Increase Productivity?

According to the research from the Texas A&M Health Science Center School of Public Health, standing desks may boost productivity in adults.

The research involved 2 groups of call center agents. The group that was provided with an adjustable sit-stand desk was seen to be 46% more productive compared to the group that used traditional, sit desk configurations.

The study went over a course of six months and the employees that used adjustable sit-stand desks sat about 1.6 hours less compared to their seated counterparts.

I use a standing desk for much of my work and I can say from experience that my productivity has increased and I seem to concentrate better than when I am sitting at my sit-stand desk.

When I work sitting down at my regular desk I lose focus quickly. I also seem to become sluggish at times. Surprisingly, I get tired faster sitting while working than standing and working.

I also have lower back pain, shoulder pain, and lower neck pain when I am sitting for even short periods of time working at my computer.

I also notice that when I am using my standing desk while working, I am not complaining as much about the pain on my back.

Prolonged sitting can cause pain on the back, neck and shoulders.

My chiropractor told me I have sciatica due to prolonged sitting. This is what prompted me to start using a standing desk for work.

I started by adding a few books on my old desk since I had not purchased a standing desk yet. I don’t recommend it because it can get wobbly and space is limited.

Currently, I use the top of my filing cabinets as my stand up desk. This is temporary until I decide on the right standing desk to buy.

When I went to visit my daughter, I used the bar top she has in her kitchen. It is so much easier to work standing up.

I am able to move freely and I can stretch any time. I take a few minutes to pause and stretch my legs and arms from time to time.

You can easily make your DIY standing desk. However, if you are looking for a standing desk with better functionalities and design, read this article I wrote about the best standing desks:

Companies like Google and Facebook provide their employees with standing desks.

Since 2013, more and more companies are providing their employees with adjustable sit-stand desks to increase productivity, encourage collaboration and improve the well- being of their employees.

In fact, there has been a 44% growth in the use of standing desks at work from 2013 to 2017. This only goes to show that standing desks are beneficial for both employee and employer.

How Do Standing Desks Help Increase Productivity?

Research suggests that standing desks helps increase productivity. But the question is, how do standing desks help increase your productivity at work?

1.Using a standing desk allows you to be more organized.

When you use a standing desk, there is only enough space for your work essentials, keeping it clutteer-free and organized.

Standing desks are designed to accommodate your keyboard, monitor, mouse and a few work essentials.

You only get to put the things you need most on your standing desk.

Create your best workspace free of clutter. This will enhance your ability to concentrate and focus on your work.

Standing desks help you stay organized. They are large enough for your work essentials. They are small enough to make it hard for you to start collecting dust bunnies.

The fewer distractions you have around you, the better your brain can focus on the task at hand.

2. Increased blood flow is good for your brain

When you stand, blood flow is increased throughout your body which leads to better oxygenation to your brain. This also contributes to being more active and alert.

When your brain is working at an optimal level, you can do your tasks better and faster, maintain your creativity and flexibility, and work on the tasks longer.

Better blood flow is also beneficial to your overall health.

All in all, when you are more focused, active and flexible, you are also most productive.

3. Better focus leads to increased productivity

When you are standing while working, you are more focused on your task at hand.

Take for example when you are washing your dishes by hand. You are standing up while washing your dishes. You don’t normally leave the task until it is finished. You most likely will stay right there until you finish.

That is the same idea as using standing desks at work. When you are working while standing, you are focused on finishing your task at hand and you have more energy to keep going.

When you are focused on your tasks, you complete more which leads to increased productivity.

4. Better posture leads to increased productivity

Standing makes you more aware of how your body feels. You tend to act based on what you are feeling.

When I started using my standing desk while working, I noticed that I move more and my back is straighter than when I am sitting.

When my shoulders are getting heavy, I notice that I automatically straighten my body and stretch a bit before going back to my task.

As a result, I feel better. My back pain is reduced. I am able to do my tasks faster. I am able to focus more on my tasks and get more done in a shorter period of time.

Health Benefits Of Standing Desks

Standing desks are rising in popularity due to the health benefits they offer.

Of course, a standing desk is not a cure-all product. However, it helps reduce the risks of health conditions and diseases that are associated with a sedentary lifestyle.

▪️ Use of standing desk at work lowers your risk of obesity and weight gain

Standing alone is not enough to lose weight. However, it helps reduce your risk of gaining more weight which can lead to obesity.

When you stand, you burn more calories than sitting. When you stand while working, you tend to move more. You tend to stretch often. This all leads to increased blood flow and improved posture.

The use of an adjustable sit-stand desk comes in handy as it allows you to easily sit or stand anytime you want.

There are also standing desks with a treadmill which can help you burn more calories while working.

This is great if you are trying to lose weight but don’t have time to go to the gym. It can also save money since you won’t need to pay for a gym membership.

A treadmill desk can help you burn more calories while you are working.

If you are working from home, using a standing desk with a treadmill is a great form of exercise. Plus, you still get to finish your tasks.

To help you decide which standing desk with treadmill is best for you, read this article I wrote about treadmill desks.

▪️ Standing at your desk can help lower your blood sugar levels

According to the office-based study of 10 employees, standing at work reduced the blood spike of the participant by 43%.

As per the results of the study, the reduction in the blood spike is due to standing while working and not because of other physical movements at work.

Another study shows that alternating from sitting to standing every 30 minutes reduces blood sugar spikes by 11.1% on average. This is especially helpful to those with Type II Diabetes and those suffering from obesity.

▪️ Standing can help lower your risk of cardiovascular diseases

In 1953, a study found that bus conductors who stood most of the time during work are 50% less likely to be affected with heart disease-related deaths compared to their colleagues in the driver’s seat.

Another study concludes that prolonged sitting increases the risk of cardiovascular diseases by 147%.

Obviously, sitting for long periods of time causes a lot of health issues. Some of its effects are too harmful, even exercise cannot help repair its negative effects.

There is no doubt using a standing desk at work is beneficial for your health, productivity, and mood.

▪️ Standing helps reduce lower back pain

One of the common effects of too much sitting is back pain.

One of the common effects of too much sitting is back pain.

I can attest to this. Since I am working from home, I spend most of my time sitting in my chair while typing on my laptop placed on top of my traditional desk.

When I was still using my old desk, I noticed that my shoulders were low and my back was hunched.

Worst, I only move from my position when the pain is already bothersome or when I already feel a tingling sensation on my arms or legs or when some parts of my body start feeling numb.

All of that changed when I started using my standing desk. The first few days felt uncomfortable.

I am so used to sitting, my body wants to sit all the time. But I slowly transitioned and it gets better.

The pain on my back is not that bothersome anymore. Although I still feel some pain when I stand too long.

Keep in mind that standing too long is just the same as sitting for too long. Prolonged standing also has its health repercussions.

The best way to do it is to sit, stand, and move. When you feel tired standing or you feel a sensation on your legs, feet, or back, it’s time to stretch a little bit and rest your feet. Sit for about 10 to 20 minutes.

You can bring your laptop with you while sitting so you are still able to work.

I think the best part about using a standing desk is that you are able to do simple stretching anytime and it helps.

When you are feeling sluggish or sleepy, stretching helps keep you awake. Stretching also helps boost blood flow.

This only goes to show that using a standing desk at work contributes to better health.

▪️ Using a standing desk at work helps improve your mood and boost your energy level.

Using a standing desk at work helps improve your mood and boost your energy level.

Using standing desks at work has a positive effect on your whole well-being.

In a study about occupational sitting time and improving worker health, results showed that those who were given a sit-stand desk and used it for 4 weeks has experienced a reduction in their upper back and neck pain by 54% and their mood improved.

However, when the standing desks were removed, these improvements were negated after 2 weeks.

When I started using my standing desk, I can say that I felt more energetic. Also, since my back pain is not bothering me that much like before, I am definitely in a better mood.

Keep in mind that not all standing desks are created equal. Check out this article I wrote about standing desks and their features to help you decide which is best for you.

▪️ Using a standing desk can help reduce your risk of early mortality

As we all know, prolonged sitting can cause various sicknesses and conditions which increases your risk of dying early.

This doesn’t come as a surprise since Type II Diabetes and certain heart problems are associated with a sedentary lifestyle.

Standing encourages you to move more and respond to your body when you feel something. Standing also keeps you away from a sedentary lifestyle, which gives you a higher chance to live longer.

Tips On How To Maximize The Benefits Of Your Standing Desk

There are no clear guidelines when it comes to the use of standing desks.

As per my experience, I can share with you these tips so you can maximize the benefits of your standing desk.

1.Don’t just stand! Sit and move when needed.

The best way to reap the benefits of your standing desk is to alternate from standing to sitting and moving your body like stretching and walking a few steps.

Standing for a long time can cause fatigue, varicose veins, and can impact your muscles and tendons negatively.

The idea is for you to sit lesser and move more. You do not have to disregard sitting. You still need to sit when you need to rest.

2.Adjust the position of your desk and your monitor.

When choosing the right standing desk for you, make sure to consider your own height.

If you are using a fixed-height standing desk, ensure that you are able to rest your elbows on the surface of the desk.

If you are using a height-adjustable sit-stand desk, check the maximum and minimum height you can adjust it to and check if it corresponds to your own height.

Follow these guidelines so you can maximize the benefits of a standing desk.

To check, stand in front of the desk and place your arms on your side.

Rest your elbows on the surface of the desk and make a 90-degree angle. Your wrist and neck must be neutral.

For your monitor, place the tip of your middle finger on top of your screen. Straighten your arms and adjust accordingly.

The distance from the tip of your middle finger to your elbow is how far your face should be from your monitor.

The top of your screen must be on eye-level. To prevent eye-strain, you can tilt your screen upwards about 10 to 20 degrees.

This is also to prevent your neck from tilting up and down to prevent neck pain.

3.Place your keyboard and mouse at the same level.

Typing on your keyboard for long hours can strain your wrists. This is why you need to optimize your wrist position when standing.

Place your keyboard and mouse at the same level so you don’t have to keep moving your wrists every time.

Another tip to prevent your wrist from straining: keep your wrist straight when you are typing.

4.Place all your necessary work things near you.

Standing desks are designed to accommodate your monitor, keyboard, and mouse.

However, you also have other work staples that you need beside you as you use them most of the time such as your telephone, printed materials, printer, etc.

When you are choosing the right standing desk for your workplace, consider the depth and width of the desk. Think of all the necessary work things that you need to place on your desk.

Another benefit of using a standing desk is that you need to organize your things and choose only what is needed to be on top of your desk since the area is limited.

Less clutter means better mood and peace of mind which means better productivity.

I have done a lot of research about standing desks because I wanted to be healthier. To help you with your standing desk journey, check out this article I wrote: My Best Office Solutions: Tried and Tested

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