Are Standing Desks A Good Idea?

Introduction

The following blog post is a discussion on standing desks and is written by Brandon Meade, DC who is a chiropractor in Ft Thomas KY and a Florence KY chiropractor. This blog post is cross posted and can also be seen here. Standing desks are a contentious topic among ergonomists, researchers, and health professionals. On one hand, it’s clear that sitting all day can damage your body; on the other hand, standing all day isn’t exactly good for you either. So how do we know when it’s appropriate to use a standing desk? Here are some things we think you should consider before making any decisions about whether or not to try one out:

Standing desks can limit back pain caused from sitting for long periods of time.

It’s important to start with a question: If a standing desk is good for you, what is it good for?

If you don’t have any back pain, then standing desks aren’t going to help you. In fact, they may make things worse—and I’ll explain why in a moment.

Standing desks can be useful if you have back pain or other conditions that are exacerbated by sitting for long periods of time. If those conditions apply to you, then standing desks might be worth considering as an option for alleviating your symptoms and discomfort at work.

The bodily conditions that standing desks are prescribed to treat are varied.

Standing desks can limit back pain caused from sitting for long periods of time.

There are a number of physiological conditions that standing desks are prescribed to treat. These include:

  • back pain
  • neck pain
  • leg pain
  • carpal tunnel syndrome

In some cases, there’s actual science suggesting that standing desks help people with certain ailments–but it is rarely definitive.

In some cases, there’s actual science suggesting that standing desks help people with certain ailments–but it is rarely definitive.

For instance, researchers at the University of New South Wales conducted a study on the effects of standing desks on back pain. The results were positive but not conclusive: Standing desks helped people who suffered from chronic back pain, but those who had acute lower-back injuries were likely to experience discomfort if they used one for more than 15 minutes at a time.

In addition to this (and other studies like it), there are several anecdotes from people who claim that their conditions have improved after switching to standing desks. But even if you do want to start using one yourself, it’s important to make sure that you’re using your desk correctly. For example: If you tend toward slouching while sitting down–which most people do–then this can lead to tension in your neck and shoulder muscles when switching over to standing mode; similarly, if you have any kind of injury involving any part of your back or legs then standing may make these problems worse because they will be weighted differently than usual during use (especially if their weight distribution is uneven).

The last major point worth noting here is the ergonomic one: standing desks provide a wide range of motion, which is associated with less strain on the body and lower work-related fatigue.

Standing desks are also beneficial to individuals with back pain. For example, in a study of 53 individuals who suffered from chronic low back pain, researchers found that those who used standing desks reported lower levels of pain than their counterparts who remained seated. Also noteworthy is the fact that these benefits appeared to be not only immediate but long-lasting as well. The same researchers followed up with their subjects six months after the end of the study and found similar results: those who had used standing desks still reported less pain than those who had remained seated.

This effect has been observed in other studies as well; for instance, another study looked at how using a treadmill desk would affect office workers’ overall stress levels while they were working at their computers over an eight-week period. Those participants who did not switch out their sitting position for a standing one experienced increased heart rate overall during this time period—an indicator of increased stress—whereas those participants whose workstations were equipped with motorized treadmills experienced decreased cardiovascular responses during this time period—another indicator of reduced stress levels and anxiety associated with working at an office computer all day long! This decrease was attributed directly to having access to these devices versus having no opportunity whatsoever.

Most experts say that using a standing desk can be helpful if you have back pain or certain other conditions

If you have back pain or some other condition that makes sitting for long periods of time difficult, using a standing desk may be helpful. Standing can help people with type 2 diabetes avoid complications from the disease, including heart disease and stroke. Standing desks can also help overweight people combat obesity by encouraging them to walk more often throughout the day. And finally, if you are suffering from depression, standing desks can increase blood flow and circulation in your body, which may help alleviate some of your symptoms.

Conclusion

If you have back pain or other health concerns, there’s reason to think that a standing desk could be helpful. If you think a standing desk may help reduce your back pain but have questions, feel free to contact Brandon Meade, DC at 859-640-6770 for a chiropractor in Florence, KY 41042 and for a chiropractor in Highland Heights KY 41076, call 859-441-8181.

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