Every day I see dozens of articles and blog posts extolling the greatness of Sit to Stand desks and height adjustable tables, but I rarely come across any that actually delve into why they are poised to play such a crucial role in offices. It really boils down to this, no amount of exercise or physical activity will cancel out the negative impact of prolonged periods spent in a sedentary position. While it is certainly good for your health to go for that 30 minute walk, jog or bike ride after work the medical consensus is now that it won’t “undo” a day spent sitting (or standing) in one stationary position.
However, this doesn’t mean that all of us who spend most of the day glued to a computer are doomed to higher rates of cardiovascular morbidity. The American Heart Association actually reports that that any movement that raises our metabolic rate above the normal stationary resting rate can have profound long term health benefits. This is where Sit to Stand desks begin to come into the picture. The simple act of alternating between sitting and standing positions at least once every hour is showing to actually significantly reduce the negative impact of any stationary behaviour (be that sitting or standing for extended periods of time). This slight increase in activity can help to improve well being, mood and cognitive function, as well as reduce the risk of heart disease, obesity and high blood pressure.
So in the words of the American Heart Association, “sit less, move more.”