Standing Desk

05. October 2014 · Category: Technology

Reading this article on standing desks, I thought a few comments were warranted.

(My numbering, not related to the authors enumerated list of “ideas.”)

1) “Nobody told me to expect issues with standing up 12 hours a day.”

I hope nobody recommended that you switch from a predominantly sedentary position to a exclusively standing position either. The infographics linked to by the article, certainly doesn’t. I think most of the literature I’ve read on standing desks, recommend them exactly for switching your position around regularly. Which brings us to:

2) People talking about “Standing Desks” actually mean “Sit-Stand Desks.”

Tomato-Tomahto. Whether they can be raised/lowered or are permanently “tall,” they should still facilitate moving between standing and sitting. If fixed-height, a tall chair or a movable screen/keyboard would do this.

3) Sit-Stand Desks are prohibitively expensive at $1000-4000.

That’s debateable. I build mine based on a base from Geekdesk, which is a $600 investment (incl shipping). I used a home-designed desktop (that is, shamelessly copying from memory a fancy premade desk my university used to have) which the GF had made by a cabinetry company she works with. Doing the same would probably push the price close to the $1000, but you can make the desk for ~ $700 if you’re ready to settle with respect to finish/looks. (It holds the desk top and another 200lbs … well more than an iPad — your company aren’t good at procuring office furniture.)

4) Standing Desks are for lazy men who wears sneakers, not hard-working women in power-shoes.

I paraphrase, but reading (especially) “idea” number 4, that’s what the article sounds like to me. It’s obviously ridiculous, but let me be trolled anyway. The time working at a standing desk is irrelevant as long as you switch your position around regularly. Or it’s no more relevant than it is for sitting desks. Your boardroom shoes are never going to do your health any favours. Fortunately there are alternatives, the squishy mats, more compromising shoes and … switching your position around.

5) People with Sit-Stand Desks typically stand only two hours a day.

Ask your doctor if he thinks standing 30 min every two hours you sit would be a good idea. He probably wouldn’t be against it.

It’s not a terrible article. People should know what they’re trying to accomplish (and how) when they sign up for a standing desk. And, no, few people are likely to be offered a standing desk at work. Still, it wasn’t a particularly good or well researched article. It was like the author set out to write an exposé of the false church of the standing desk. That’s a shame.

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