As a Regional Training Manager in corporate America, I split my time between face-to-face trainings with employees and sitting at my desk preparing those trainings.
I absolutely loved the time I was able to spend in front of the training classes but understood the value of the prep work that went into making sure I would deliver the information in the best manner possible.
The problem with the prep work was the amount of time I spent sitting at my desk staring at my computer.
I felt lethargic and knew there had to be a better way to get through the day.
So I asked my supervisor for a standing desk. Initially, the company couldn’t (or maybe wouldn’t) approve my request so I made my own.
I found an old box, an unused file sorter, and thick books to stack on my desk to get my laptop to the height I could comfortably use while standing. Some of my co-workers thought I was crazy but others recognized what I was doing and began requesting standing desks, also.
It just so happened that our company was relocating to a new building within the next few months and decided that this was a good time to add them to the desks of the employees who requested them.
I was so excited!
Here are the reasons that I requested the standing desk in the first place and the benefits I knew I would receive:
1 – Lowers risk of weight gain and obesity
Working in an office environment is typically very sedentary. And on top of sitting all day, there’s a lot of time spent munching on the goodies in the snack drawer while working. None of this can lead to anything good.
But just by standing instead, employees can burn anywhere from 100-200 calories per hour. Compared to sitting which burns anywhere from 60-130 calories per hour, you’re looking at almost twice the calorie burn which could decrease the rate at which weight gain could happen.
2 – Reduce back pain
One of the main reasons I pushed for the standing desk was to reduce the amount of pain that I felt in my lower back from sitting all day. Think about it. How often does your back hurt at work? How often do you hear others complaining of back pain at work?
Prolonged sitting can put extra pressure on the discs in the spine that are meant to move and be flexible. Our bodies are built to be upright. Standing helps the bones maintain their strength and also allows for better blood flow.
3 – Improve mood and energy
When you’re sitting, your brain gets less oxygen. On the other hand, standing promotes blood flow and helps your body get the oxygen it needs.
In addition to the medical benefits, just the act of standing breaks up the monotony of the day. When you’re standing, you are able to move around (and even dance) while working to make it more fun and exciting. It’s less restrictive than just sitting.
4 – Boost productivity
The MAIN reason I requested a standing desk (and the main reason you should want your employees to have one) was because it helped me think clearer to boost my productivity. Let’s just be honest. There are some parts of our jobs that can just be flatout boring. There’s no other way to say it. But they are necessary and still need to be done.
Standing helps to reduce mental fatigue and stimulates the thought process to make handling those mundane tasks easier. Thus, reducing the amount of time spent on one task and the ability to handle more.
Incorporating Standing Desks In Your Office
The great thing about standing desks is that there are a number of different styles.
Depending on the budget and feasibility of restructuring your office, it’s still very possible to incorporate them into your office. And it can easily be done today.
The easiest (and most affordable) way would be to incorporate desktop standing desks. They easily fit on top of the current desks and don’t require any assembly. This is actually the style that I have.
Another option would be to get a freestanding adjustable desk. This allows the employee to keep their workspace exactly the same, no matter whether they are standing or sitting. This is also a great option for employees who may be taller and struggle when sitting at conventional desks.
There are a number of possibilities for choosing which is best for you and your employees. Consider them a great investment in your employees’ health and the success of the company.