Standing desks have been hailed as a fad of Silicon Valley by many. Looking at the history of standing desks though, we discovered they were used by world leaders from Thomas Jefferson to Winston Churchill as well as by great authors from Charles Dickens to Ernest Hemmingway. It calls into question what is really the fad? Is standing at work something new or have we been lulled into believing that work was made easier by sitting? Ultimately our bodies were not designed to be sedentary. Our bodies, just like our minds, were developed to work and to move.
Top 5 Reasons to Embrace Standing vs. Sitting
1. Higher Productivity: When people stand, they are simply more alert; more focused. A study done two years ago proved both empirically and antidotal that productivity in the workplace increased 10% when people stood instead of sat. The study goes on to speak to how to use sitting as a reward for task completion changing the way people work. It could eliminate multitasking in the work place; concentrating on task completion and end product rather than busy work.
2. Weight Loss: With over one-third of adults in America obese, could the answer really be as simple as standing and moving throughout the day? Studies have proven that we burn 36% more calories a minute while standing vs. sitting. If an average woman at 35 years old and 140 lbs. with a sedentary lifestyle burns approximately 1650 calories a day. Then standing and moving while working for just 4 hours, burns an approximately 100 more calories a day. Meaning without a change to diet or exercise, this say woman would lose up to 10lbs a year by simply standing for half her work day. Can you imagine being 10 lbs. lighter this time next year by simply adopting a standing desk and moving throughout your day?
3. Back Health: Standing basically and easily improves your posture. It is the simple way to engage the postural muscles. Slouching while sitting weakness the neck and shoulder muscles ultimately leading to slouching and back pain. Standing alone is not enough! One needs to move throughout the day while standing; increasing your overall metabolism and muscle structure.
4. Sleep Better: Restlessness at bedtime often comes from not getting enough energy out during the day. By standing and moving all day, your energy level will remain active and constant. Thus, leading to a more satisfied feeling of physical fulfillment at the days end lending itself to better sleeping habits. Think of the last time your last satisfying deep sleep. Did it come from sitting all day on your couch or at your desk? Or did it come from a day out, fun had all while moving?
5. Overall Wellbeing: The average person office worker sits about 10 hours a day according to the Washington Post. Meaning we all live a fairly inactive lifestyle which detrimental in the long-term. Being desk bound has been linked to risks of obesity, type 2 diabetes, metabolic problems, cardiovascular disease and cancer (breast and colon). The simple of using your body the way it was intended will help lead to a lifetime of wellbeing.