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6 tips for getting the most out of a standing desk

Updated: Mar 20


Get the most out of your standing desk
Tips for using your standing desk

There is a common thread throughout the posts on this blog. It is that your standing desk won't do the job on it's own. It is a tool that needs to be used. If it sits idle - it will do nothing for you.


So this post attempts to answer the question. How do I get the most out of this tool ? Six of the best tips for maximising the return from your standing desk.


  1. Change regularly from standing to sitting This probably sounds pretty obvious but many people think that they are going to go from sitting all day to standing all day. But you aren't. There is evidence to suggest that standing all day is just as detrimental to your overall health as sitting all day. The real benefit comes from alternating between sitting and standing. The scientific evidence says 4 to 5 changes a day is optimal.

  2. Use a trigger for change Some people feel the need to have a timer that tells them when to make the change from sitting to standing and some really fancy pants desks actually have in-built timers but we are of the opinion that is over engineering. Try using a trigger that reminds you to move your desk from sitting to standing position. Perhaps every time you go to the toilet you change the height of your desk or every time you make a cup of tea or drink water. These simple triggers will achieve the goal you are after without the expense or the excessive technology.

  3. Use the memory settings We know from experience that wherever a standing desk user has used the automated memory settings the desk is being used regularly. The converse is also true. If you don't use the memory settings you are not changing from sitting to standing regularly. Having memory settings mean you can go to the exact pre-programmed height without any adjustment so use the memory settings. That's what they are there for.

  4. Sort out your cables from the outset The whole idea of these standing desks is to facilitate movement during your work day. Your legs are under the desk for half your work day so sort out some space for movement by sorting out your cable management. We have a whole lot of tools that can help you do this. At the minimum make sure your cables aren't all dangling under the desk. The desk is going up and own and your legs and the cables WILL get caught up at some time.

  5. Try new ways of sitting and standing What did you think there were only single ways of sitting or standing ? C'mon use your imagination ? Try pushing your chair away and getting the desk at it's lowest level and squat at your desk for 10 minutes a day. Or go to any yoga site and have a look at the multiple ways of standing that you can explore ? Get a kneeling chair or wobble stool and explore new sitting postures. The possibilities are only limited by your imagination.

  6. Clear your desktop With number 4 we addressed the underside of your desk. What about the top side of your desk ? We see so many people with so much on their desk and they are jammed into a small area to work from. In the same way as you free your legs to move you can free your arms by having free desk space to stretch and move. Regular sideways arm movements are important for your shoulders and neck.


Conclusion


Powercore has sold over 2,000 standing desks in the Wellington area alone. This means we get to see a lot of people using our desks. They vary from large installations ( NZ Police or Wellington hospital) to smaller offices. The tips above are gleaned from seeing our customers use our desks.


The main point is to work the desk. It is there to be used and where there is a group of people doing this - the benefits are huge and they go beyond just standing while you work.


FAQ

What is the right time to stand at a desk in a work day ?

In general, you should probably be trying to spend 505 of your time standing and 50% of your time sitting at your desk and they should be broken into 1 hour segments.


Keep in mind it takes some time to build up to 1/2 of your work day standing so ease your way into achieving these numbers. And if you miss a day it simply doesn't matter...


FAQ

What height do you take the desk to to squat or kneel ?

Any tips for how to clear the desktop ?

Is setting the programmable memory easy ?


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