Sitting at a desk all day is the only way to get all the office paperwork and other communications taken care of, right? Well, not necessarily. There is a growing trend towards stand-up desks and it looks like they might change the way that every office worker spends their day. This innovative approach to office furniture benefits both employees and companies alike.
According to a 2012 study by the British Psychological Society (BPS): “In a typical working week, people spend on average 5 hours and 41 minutes per day sitting at their desk.” The study also showed that people who sit at work are more likely to sit when they are not at work. This increased sitting time has a direct correlation with BMI scores and mental well-being.
It has been said that sitting for long periods is just as bad as smoking and has many of the same debilitating effects. Long term health problems including, diabetes, cardiovascular disease and obesity and early mortality are all associated with inactivity. However, there is strong evidence that those that use a standing desk may burn more calories than their sitting counterparts, which may help to counteract some of those health issues.
Sitting in one spot for several hours focused on a computer screen seems like the only that employees can get all of their tasks done. The problem is that once they begin to get tired, stiff and sore, it becomes more difficult to focus and productivity declines. Even though they are putting in a full work day, the amount of work doesn’t show it.
People that have converted to a stand-up desk claim to have a higher energy level and that they are more alert during the day. When they feel good and energetic, they are more willing and able to complete the tasks at hand. Not only that, but they are more likely to report improved health conditions. For companies the benefit is that there are fewer employee sick days and an increase in productivity.
What’s Old Is New
The concept of working while standing isn’t new. In fact, some of the most famous people in history touted the benefits. Both Leonardo da Vinci and Virginia Woolf are said to have been advocates of the practice. One needs only to look at their success to realize that they just might have known something we don’t. Perhaps, one day, every office will be outfitted with stand-up desks attached to treadmills. If this trend catches on, the world’s offices will be full of slim, healthy, energetic and productive employees.
Stand-up desks are certainly interesting, don’t you think? If you want to talk about this subject or anything else having to do with office furniture, contact us. We are always happy to answer your questions.