For the past few months, I've been intrigued with the idea of a standing desk. After looking into several examples, I decided to modify my current desk to a standing position:
With the help of my dad, we built two 37"x24"x14" platforms for my current desk to sit on. This brought my desktop to a height of 43", which is just beneath my elbows (which, ideally, is the height you should target).
The platforms are fully functional, able to hold well over 200 pounds each, I’d still like to cleanup, stain, and finish them a bit, and possibly put a protective edge to put my foot on (maybe a nonslip surface).
While it's all well and good that I've built these, the real question remains: why even build this in the first place? From what I've researched, there are numerous benefits to using a standing desk:
- Reduced back pain and potential-injury
- Sitting for more than 6 hours a day has an associated death rate increase of 20% in men and 40% in women
- Increases your heart rate anywhere from 5 to 10 beats a minute, resulting in burning calories throughout the day and increased cardiovascular health
- Metabolic increase (due to the above point)
- On average, if you can replace 4 hours of sitting time with standing time, and make no other changes in lifestyle, you can shed 7 lbs in a year. With other lifestyle changes, that can be greatly increased.
Other things to consider:
- Just because it’s a standing desk doesn’t mean you’re standing straight up all day, you can lean, put a foot up, and so on.
- It’s important to vary your routine. Sitting while on the phone or to take a break is A-OK.
- Some people go way out there, and throw a treadmill base under their desk (walking all day). Maybe something I’ll consider, but for now, this works fine
I've been using the desk for just over a week, and so far I've enjoyed using it. I do feel that I am able to focus better on work, and that I don't feel so tired throughout the day. My feet have grown used to standing, for the most part, and in fact, it feels kind of strange to sit at my desk now.
Some additional reading material: