3 Common Misconceptions About Standing Desks

3 Common Misconceptions About Standing Desks

1. You have to stand the whole day

This is the single biggest misconception going around about standing desks. It’s also one of the key reasons used in negative articles such as this about standing desks. The simple fact is that prolonged standing time is as bad as prolonged sitting time, leading to varicose veins, back pain and fatigue.

It’s really about breaking up your seated based work with standing based work, and vice versa, at regular intervals throughout your workday. Experts recommend that you stand up every half hour or so and walk. It’s all about achieving sustainability and balance.

2. Using a standing desk is tiring

Embarking upon any exercise routine is tiring. Adapting to more standing based work is an adaptive process and could lead to some initial physical sensations and fatigue. The key is, as with any exercise routine, to start with baby steps increasing your time standing as you become fitter.

We recommend you start with 25% of your time standing, moving gradually up to 50%. We also recommend that each standing period does not exceed 30 mins for a start. In an eight hour work day that’s two hours of accumulated time standing, working up to a total of four hours accumulated time standing.

3. Using a standing desk helps you lose weight

Standing is a low intensity activity that can increase overall energy expenditure compared to sitting still. This simple fact could intuitively be translated into weight loss but evidence is lacking to show a strong link between standing and weight reduction.

However, analyses by MRI does show that fat deposited around vital organs (heart, kidneys, liver) is very strongly associated with sedentary time compared with overall Body Mass Index (BMI – the standard used to measure obesity). There is also encouraging evidence to show that breaking up long periods of sitting with frequent sessions of light intensity movements improves glucose and insulin levels.

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Learn more about being healthy at work

Learn more about being healthy at work

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