When at your workstation what is the right way to work? Sit? Stand? Give up and go home? As appealing as that third option is, it probably isn’t an option for most of us. Thankfully, these aren’t your only choices, and the solution is actually quite simple.
When researchers followed 7,300 Ontario workers aged 35 to 74, they found the risk of heart disease was higher among those who spent the majority of their time standing at work compared to those who spent most of their day sitting at work. However many studies also suggest that sitting for prolonged periods increase the risk of heart disease, diabetes, and circulatory problems, which I think we can all agree we would like to avoid.
Working in an office with prolonged sitting and minimal movement is known to increase your risk of serious health issues, and working in an environment that requires standing for extended periods of time is also being shown to increase your risk of other serious health issues. So what’s the right way to work?
The solution is movement!
We advise people to track how long they’re seated and to try to vary their position every 30 to 45 minutes. The American Heart Association reports that any movement that raises our metabolic rate above the normal stationary resting rate (sitting) can have profound long-term health benefits and decrease our chance of those rather scary diseases and illnesses.
Research shows that continuous movement throughout the workday can help keep us mentally sharp, increasing productivity. Since most people don’t have time to leave their work and go for a walk every 30 minutes we need a way to get up and move around without actually leaving our workstations.
Enter sit-to-stand desks.
Sit-to-stand desks can be extremely beneficial because the simple act of alternating between sitting and standing positions at least once every half-hour has shown to significantly reduce the negative impact of prolonged stationary behaviour! Sit-to-stand desks can literally change the way you work, keeping you feeling good physically and mentally for both the short and long term.
With the amount of research out there about workplace ergonomics, health and the impact it has on productivity, you would be doing yourself a disservice if you didn’t look for a way to be more active at work.
To read more about sit-to-stand desks and other ergonomic solutions for your workstation, click here to download our paper on everything office ergonomics!