Combined with good chairs, height-adjustable work surfaces provide the variety people need to sit well, stand well, and be well.
Our bodies are made for movement. Standing and moving are unique biological triggers that play a key role in being healthy. Unfortunately, the sedentary life that many office workers have adopted affects their health regardless of how much they eat or how much they exercise.
Sitting for extended time periods is linked with visual symptoms, high triglycerides, obesity, insulin resistance, cardiovascular disease, and cancer. Without regular and incidental standing and walking, the activity of lipo-protein lipase, the enzyme that breaks down plaque-causing fats in our blood, drops off significantly.
Prolonged sitting has also been shown to result in increasing worker discomfort over the course of the workday. And, research shows an association between increasing discomfort and decreasing productivity, as well as future pain. What’s more, the causal chain from prolonged, immobile sitting to possible health risks exists even when one sits in a highly adjustable, ergonomically supportive work chair.
If sitting all day poses such risks, some say the answer is to stand. However, abandoning one’s chair to work all day at a stand-up surface is associated with its own hazards: lower extremity discomfort and fatigue, lower extremity swelling and venous pooling, lower back pain, and entire body fatigue.
One part of the solution is providing furniture in appropriate settings so that people have options to sit, stand, and move during their workday. The other part consists of helping people understand the benefits of moving and changing their postures, as well as the basics of adjusting their furniture.
Take a Stand for Movement
Movement leads to better physical—and financial—health, setting the stage for performance, well-being, and even happiness.
Strike a Balance
Standing all day is not the cure for sitting all day. Alternating between the two during the day is best.
Some people do work that keeps them at their desks all day. They need movement more than anyone. A sit-to-stand solution gives it to them, right at their desks.