Recent press articles have highlighted that height adjustable desks might not be living up to the hype, yet with so many studies conducted – all of which highlight the benefits – how could this be possible? We went to investigate and the outcome may surprise you.
In 2015, sitting has been described as the new smoking and thousands of offices around the UK are now changing to height adjustable desking. Whether you’re looking at manual (crank) or electric height adjustable desks, both options suffer the same issue that if they’re not used properly they may actually be causing more harm than good.
The last thing any employee wants – or any employer for that matter – is to be distracted while trying to concentrate. Whilst there’s not much we can do about the office idiot bouncing around on a Friday afternoon, we can do something about the pain you might be feeling in your legs, shoulder and arms from using your height adjustable desk incorrectly. “How can you use a desk wrong?!” I hear you say… well it’s easier than you think. Keep reading and see how many of these you’re guilty of.
1. Standing all day
Don’t make the mistake of thinking you should replace sitting all day with standing all day. Standing for extended periods of time can cause just as many problems for the body as sitting. Standing for too long compresses the spine leading to lower back problems over time, not to mention the increased risk of varicose veins and deep vein thrombosis. Using a combination of sitting and standing eliminates the risks associated with both sitting and standing.
2. Standing or sitting still
Your body wasn’t designed to remain static for long periods of time. Not moving can be the biggest cause of issues whether you’re sitting or standing; your body needs movement to help with circulation and flexibility.
When standing, try shifting your weight from one foot to the other, and whilst sitting you should recline your legs and body to form a 135 degree angle, which has been identified as the healthiest seated position. So now you have an excuse when your boss says you’re sitting like a slob!
3. Using the wrong product
Don’t mistake a standing desk for a sit-stand desk, they are massively different. Standing only desks are static and don’t allow you to sit down unless your office chair extends half way to the ceiling. Standing in one position all day leads to blood pooling in the feet (and no one wants cankles!), it really isn’t healthy for you. Using a proper adjustable desk, one that can be adjusted from sitting to standing in a matter of seconds, is the correct product for you – for everyone, in fact.
Also don’t get confused with height settable desks. These have the adjustment however unless you plan on getting underneath your desk 10 times a day to adjust each leg, they’re not at all feasible. Height settable desks are only really suitable for tall or small people that need a sitting desk and a standard 740mm height doesn’t fit.
4. Spending too much money
Yes, height adjustable desks are expensive. They’re always going to be more expensive than a traditional desk because of the nature of them. That’s not to say you should go crazy spending hundreds and hundreds on every desk – costs would rack up into the tens of thousands if you run a decent-sized office. Electric adjustable desks have traditionally been around twice the price of manual desks however Hawk offers an electric version – see here – that competes with most manual prices, and don’t be fooled into thinking this is a budget product because the quality often beats competitors’ products that are twice the price. Shop smarter, the benefits should be obvious.
In summary, make sure you have a sit-stand desk rather than just a standing desk; they may be slightly more expensive but they’re well worth the money – you’ll thank us in a few years’ time when you’re not walking with aches and pains like someone that is 20 years older. Keep moving! Fidget, wriggle…do whatever you want to do and ignore the parents and teachers that told you to sit still when you were younger. Try to stand up and sit down every hour and your body will thank you for it. Get in touch with one of our sales team if you need any more information, we’re here to help!