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Standing Desks: Real Ergonomic Miracle or Just a Fad?

August 1, 2022

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Sitting at a desk for long periods all day affects your physical well-being. The design of standing desks offers an alternative to better posture. Adjustable standing desks’ main goal is to optimize proper posture. That way, employees do not have to leave the workplace feeling uncomfortable. However, some have questions about the longevity of standing desks. 

What is a Standing Desk?

Standing desks come in many shapes and forms. They can be purchased, customized, or even converted from a traditional desk. Unfortunately, buying a new standing desk can be somewhat pricey. These standing desks allow you to complete traditional work by standing up. In recent years, standing desks have outsold traditional desks designed for sitting. 

With the increase of telecommuting, standing desks make more sense than ever. They allow for the worker to increase movement and blood flow without having to sacrifice productivity. Ideally, the standing desk would eliminate many negative externalities of working at a conventional desk. For example, removing traditional desks would decrease the number of breaks employees take to stretch and improve posture.

Criticism of Standing Desks

All of this mentioned does not mean that standing desks are perfect. Many have criticized the functionality and practical use of standing desks.  One of these criticisms is that standing desks are more challenging to organize. Since they are smaller in size, computers usually take up a majority of the space. This makes it more difficult to place other items traditionally found on an office desk on a standing desk. Furthermore, using a desktop on a standing desk may present an issue when optimizing space for cables, plugs, and the modem. However, for personal computers, standing desks present a few issues. 

Others have criticized the standing desk’s ability to market on the principle that it is healthier. However, little has proven that the standing desk is more beneficial. An article in the Journal of Physical Activity and Health found that people that use standing desks burn only eight more calories an hour. Furthermore, more calories were burned walking during lunch break than continuing to use the standing desk. If somebody were continuously committed to employing a standing desk, then over the years, there would be a significant improvement in the number of calories they burn. However, using a standing desk is in no way going to replace doing your cardio exercises. 

Sitting vs. Standing Desk

While standing desks may be a fad, sitting desks are not going anywhere. Standing desks can be optimal when working from home and especially when using a personal computer. Adjustable standing desks can cut back on how tedious sitting at home and staring at a computer the entire day can be. However, sitting desks are still aesthetically pleasing and have a role in the traditional office space into the foreseeable future. They are also ideal when using large desktops with bulky modems. Sitting desks offer more freedom to customize and organize but are more difficult to transport. Overall, the decision between a sitting or standing desk does not need to be direct competition. The choice depends mostly on work situations and personal factors. 

Optimizing Desk Use

Your work desk space is usually one of the few spaces in the workplace you get to design and customize entirely to your liking. You want to be sure that you are optimizing its space and organizing it efficiently, so you do not have to sacrifice your time and comfort. The American Society of Administrative Professionals (ASAP) provides training resources and articles to improve your work life. Check out ASAP today for many valuable tips about administrative professionals and executive assistants. 


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