Standing Desks vs Sitting Desks – Are Standing Desks Good For You?
Ergonomics should play a more vital role when it comes to our daily lives. Often, our purchases are items that are pretty rather than healthy or even less damaging to our daily lives.
When it comes to desks, ergonomics is often one of the primary concerns when purchasing one, apart from size and sturdiness.
Standing desks have been in the limelight recently, a consequence of the rise in the popularity of health awareness and fitness. Standing desks are said to be better than sitting ones. Whether and how better they are is best explained by facts.
What Are Standing Desks?
Before going any deeper, it is important to establish what a standing desk is. To put things simply, it is a desk that you stand next to, performing the tasks that you would otherwise perform sitting.
They are mostly used for office jobs that require a computer but can be used with any office job. Standing desks are said to be helpful because they provide variation to an otherwise proven to be a detrimental position that is the seated one.
Standing desks are divided into two categories, fixed and height-adjustable, also known as sit-stand desks. Fixed-height desks are cheaper and can be purchased for less than 100$. Modifying your desk also has the same result, often much cheaper than purchasing a new one.
Adjustable desks often cost upwards of 1,000$ which for most people, is a lot for just a desk. Additionally, PC desks are available, and most of them are height adjustable, though that drives the price even further up.
There are variations with treadmills, but those are also pricey. But, are standing desks worth it?
Are Standing Desks Good For You?
There are many reasons why people claim standing desks are good for you, and most of those revolve around the fact that you would be sitting less. Sitting has been proven to be detrimental for our lumbar area, and hamstrings, not to mention the shoulders and arms, depending on the posture.
More importantly, sitting is bad because it has been connected with an increased risk of heart disease, obesity, and diabetes. Sitting for eight hours per day without any additional exercise is considered to be a similar health risk as obesity and smoking.
One of the ways to sit less when doing a sitting job at a desk is to stand, which is where standing desks come in.
How Standing Desks Benefit Us
Standing is beneficial because it lowers sitting time. For most people doing desk jobs, this means better vascularity and a position that causes less discomfort in the lumbar area. When it comes to calories, standing burns around 88 calories per hour, compared to sitting, which is around 80, as reported by this study.
A better alternative is to walk while standing and working, which burns around 215 calories per hour. Treadmill standing desks are perfect for this, but they might not fit into everyone’s budget.
Some studies have shown that people who stand when doing desk jobs could be more productive, which depends on the job, of course.
However, some physical activity and changing one’s position will definitely be helpful when sitting for extended periods of time.
Are There Any Negatives?
Standing desks are not the end-all solution for anyone’s sitting problems. They may help in some cases, but these are specific from person to person. If one’s standing posture is as bad as their sitting posture, a standing desk might not help much.
Standing for an extended period of time can cause pain in the feet and ankles, as well as swelling. People who stand a lot as part of their job can have vascular problems.
Standing has not been proven to help combat heart disease. Standing is not a replacement for exercise. Moving is much better, such as walking, or dedicated exercise to combat the consequences of sitting.
Some types of work, for example, the kind that requires intense typing for an extended period of time might be problematic with standing desks. Tasks that require precision work are harder with standing desks.
Standing Desks Vs Sitting – Which Are Better?
Depending on the person and their desk job, both standing and sitting desks are valid options. For those who do a lot of typing, a sitting desk is a better option, with regular pauses to stretch and let the body relax.
Standing desks could be beneficial to those who do jobs that are more social than hands-on. Having meetings and taking calls while standing is more easily accomplished than typing for an extended period of time.
A stand-sit desk is the best of both worlds, however it will cost more money than either of the two, at a fixed height.
Both types of desks should be simple enough when it comes to cable management. Height-adjustable desks might present one with more issues if the cables are not long enough.
Standing desks can provide some relief for lumbar pain but too much standing can lead to feet and ankle pain. Anti fatigue mats can be used to remedy this problem.
Standing at a desk is not a replacement for regular exercise, which is what one should do whether they sit or stand at a desk.
Conclusion and Summary – Standing Desks Are Good Enough
If you are mindful about your practices when doing a sitting job, you should have enough breaks and walks/stretches, so as not to burden your body by having long sitting sessions. Standing desks can introduce some variety to an otherwise detrimental position and relieve some of the pains and problems that come with long periods of time of inactivity.
A standing desk with a treadmill is a better option, though not all desk jobs can be done in such a position and such a desk requires a large financial investment. Ergonomic chairs and better daily habits might be better investments than a standing desk, depending on the complexity of the job. In the end, movement is a more valid solution than standing still.
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