A new age has dawned and people are becoming more aware of their health than ever before. The world over, corporate companies have realized that healthy employees make for more productive employees. This translates to more money in less time which makes everyone happier.
The newest craze that is hitting the office is standing desks. Sitting at your desk is no longer considered to be practical as it comes with a host of negative effects. From bad posture to gaining weight, sitting has become obsolete and standing desks are surging.
If you work in an office, check out the advantages of switching to the new standard.
Get into standing gradually
Our bodies develop muscle memory over time, which means that we become accustomed to doing something for prolonged periods of time, using less energy. Whenever you start to do something new, your body will go through growing pains and you could experience some soreness.
When you switch to standing desks, you could experience the same type of discomfort in the beginning. Some symptoms might include sore feet, back, and legs. Don’t overdo it and ease into standing. Any athlete will tell you that if you do too much too fast, you end up injuring yourself. The same applies to standing desks.
It reduces the chance of weight gain and obesity
When you do come around and switch to standing desks, the benefits will start to show in the physique of your employees. People gain weight when they don’t burn enough calories throughout the day. When you sit behind your desk the whole day, you burn next to no calories, but you still get hungry and need to eat.
When you stand at your desk, you could burn up to 170 more calories a day. That means that you could burn up to a thousand calories a week, just by standing at your desk. What’s more, is that you will start to feel more energized because of the extra calories burned.
Stand up if you want to live longer
More and more research is indicating that sitting for prolonged periods of time could increase your risk of dying earlier. Studies have found that there is a strong link between early deaths and sitting.
This comes to surprise seeing that people who sit and work don’t burn enough calories and are more likely to develop type 2 diabetes and heart disease. It’s not that sitting causes these conditions, but rather that it creates the circumstances for these conditions to develop due to inactivity and a lack of exercise.
Reduce your blood sugar levels by standing
When you eat, your blood sugar rises after the meal, but the higher the spike in your blood sugar, the worse it is for your body. People with type 2 diabetes are in particular danger as their blood sugar spikes way too high.
Two separate studies showed that standing lowered the participants’ blood sugar. The participants who stood for 180 minutes after their meal had a 43% reduction in their blood sugar as opposed to those who were sitting. Both groups of participants gave the same number of steps, but the fact that they were standing increased their blood circulation.
Stand and become more productive
When standing desks started to appear, it was met with a bit of apprehension and the main concern that employers had was that it would impede their employers’ productivity, especially their typing. One particular study debunked this fear.
Participants were recorded while sitting for four hours and also while standing for four hours at their desks. Their typing speed and accuracy were measured in both instances and there was no significant change in their typing speed.
Although they didn’t show an increase in typing speed either, their energy levels improved, which could lead to increased productivity.
If your productivity is low because of the office culture or a toxic boss, switch your job. A standing desk can make you more productive but a toxic business environment won’t let you flourish. Try good job sites and read reviews to know how sites like Velvet Jobs and others are performing.
Standing could reduce your risk of heart disease
The notion that standing is better for your health than sitting is not a new one. It was first proposed in 1953 when scientists conducted several studies on bus conductors. The results were conclusive and found that the conductors who sat all day had a 147% increased risk of developing heart disease as opposed to those who stood all day.
Since then, many other studies have been done and one, in particular, found that not even an hour of vigorous exercise could circumvent the damage of a full day of sitting.
Improve your mood and energy levels
The tests were done and the results came in and there was a resounding consensus that standing had the potential of improving mood and energy levels. A particular 7-week study revealed that the employers who stood for their workday, started to show better energy levels and their moods improved as well.
When the same participants were asked to return to their sitting desks, their energy levels and moods reverted to the same state as what it was before they started doing their work standing up.
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No more back pain if you stand a bit more
Office workers are constantly complaining about back pain, especially those who sit for the majority of their days. A study was done to see if the standing desk could alleviate their pain and within a very short period of time, they recorded improvement.
Some candidates indicated a 32% improvement in lower back pain. Candidates that used sit-stand desks reported that their upper back pain was reduced by as much as 54% after only four weeks. When they were asked to return to their seated desks, their pain started to return within two weeks.
When one looks at all the evidence above, it is hard to imagine that there are still so many sitting desks around. Convention has brainwashed us and made us believe that our feet and legs would not be able to handle full days standing. There is too much evidence that supports the notion of standing desks, but it is something that should be phased in. Quitting sitting desks cold turkey is likely to give you different results.
About the author:
Isabell Gaylord is a leading writer contributing to 8 dollar essay and a lot and her essays are referred to self-improvement, writing, blogging, inspiration. In her free time, she enjoys meeting people who inspire her, practicing yoga and walking around the city. Find Isabell on Twitter.