Height-adjustable desks are becoming increasingly popular in the office. And rightly so: height-adjustable desks allow for an uncomplicated change of working posture, from sitting to standing and back again. The investment in height-adjustable desks pays off as it can avoid preventable back complaints, increases performance, concentration and motivation of employees, and minimizes downtime. The smow furnishing experts have assembled essentials to consider when selecting in a sit-stand desk, and why they are so enormously advantageous for employees and employers.
By nature, the human body functions best when it moves; however, especially in everyday office life, stationary sitting is the predominant position and this all too often leads to stiffening or joint wear and tear. It has long been established that well-adapted, ergonomic office chairs are essential in everyday office life; however, it is also important to regularly stand up in the course of the working day, including for prolonged periods. This does not mean that you should only stand, not only is that not necessarily healthy, but moreover it is not always possible. Much more, frequent changes of position is recommended, changes from which the body and brain profit. The occasional change of position and posture is essential for a lively mind. Some experts recommend sitting for 60 % of the working time, 30 % standing and actively moving during the remaining 10 % of the working day; others propose 50:25:25. Regardless of your preferred option it is clear that a healthy combination of sitting, standing and active moving should be encouraged and undertaken.
The LASI (L?nderschutz für Arbeitsschutz und Sicherheitstechnik) manual “Ergonomic design of continuous standing work" (LASI (ed.), LV 50, March 2009) lists numerous design measures to make the workplace more ergonomic and health-promoting, including, for example, changing tasks, alternating between standing and sitting work, active break times, appropriate work postures, and therefore options not only in the employees control but which also underscore the responsibility of the employer. Standing-sitting desks have an extremely positive effect on workplace ergonomics - and that without the need for major alterations. Following a quick transition period, you and your employees will realise the many advantages a height-adjustable desk can bring in so many areas.
1. ... REDUCES THE RISK OF HEART DISEASE
While it is understood that regular exercise can compensate for sitting during the working day, if you sit for many hours every day, over time sport alone will not be able to fully compensate. Physical activity in the workplace is essential. If you stand up while working you are doing your health a service: studies have shown that prolonged sitting has a negative effect on the cardiovascular system. In particular the so-called HDL level (high density lipoproteins) decreases when sitting, and the risk of heart attack consequently increases. The reason is that HDL transports excess cholesterol to the liver in order to keep the blood vessels free; however, if this function is restricted because the productivity of the HDL level has been reduced, it can lead to calcification of the arteries. In the worst case, this can lead to deadly diseases such as heart attacks or strokes, which are still among the most frequent causes of death in Europe. Height-adjustable desks and thus a healthy HDL level through sufficient movement during the day can thereby positively influence your health.
2. ... PROMOTES HEALTHY MUSCLES
Regular standing and exercise are important; however, standing up all day alone is not a solution. Much more it is essential that the regeneration capabilities of the spine remain activated. This is the case when the spine and muscles regularly move and thus stay supple. It is therefore important to regularly change position, and for all to stand, because when you are sitting, the muscle activity in your legs is virtually zero. Over prolonged periods this can result in muscle breakdown and negative consequences for the musculoskeletal system. In the worst case scenario this can result in bone degeneration, something that is very difficult to reverse. In addition, the back and neck muscles relax significantly when you regularly switch between a sitting and standing position.
3. ... PROTECTS SPINE, ANKLES, AND KNEES
As far as the spine, ankles, and knees are concerned, a height-adjustable desk is a contemporary and ergonomic solution: breaking the length of the sitting period not only keeps body and mind busy over the entire working day - and beyond - it also keeps you healthier in the long term, as the spine, ankles, and knees are significantly protected. Complications of the back, neck, and shoulder area as well as in the joints are quickly reduced with a height adjustable desk
. Acute back problems, which are becoming increasingly common at ever younger ages, can be caused by stress, mental problems or, very often, the wrong posture. Stand-up working solutions can help!