In 2022, the current workplace trend sees health and well-being being prioritised, which goes hand in hand with re-evaluating existing workplace practices, equipment and furniture.
One initiative to improve health and well-being at the workplace is by working with height-adjustable office desks.
A brief overview of the most prominent benefits and facts surrounding these types of desks follows.
Increased Productivity Rate
It should not come as a surprise that exercising plentiful is one of the keys to a healthier lifestyle since it is a proven way to obtain a healthy mind in a healthy body.
Yet, it might be more surprising to learn that the same goes for just standing up. Indeed, standing up while at work increases the productivity rate in comparison to sitting down at a desk all the time.
More concretely, researchers associated with the British Medical Journal facilitated an experiment involving 146 NHS employees, half of which had to trade in their traditional office desk for a height-adjustable desk. The results of this study demonstrated that the employees who made this switch were more focused, showed a higher level of professional engagement and they also encountered fewer musculoskeletal problems.
Even more so, these employees significantly reduced their time spent sitting at the office by 82.39 minutes within the year. Instead, they utilized this time to do their work while standing up. Therefore, this study demonstrated that with just minimal effort and a short time of standing up each day at work already goes a long way. It is extremely beneficial, both in terms of productivity and better health.
Better Mental Health
Secondly, height-adjustable desks also positively impact employees’ mental health.
Another study that followed several participants over one week has demonstrated this. Less abstractly, the study showed that employees who stand up from time to time and do not spend their whole work day sitting down experienced less stress and were generally less tired.
In fact, 87% of the participants who used height-adjustable desks claimed t have more energy to get them through the day.
Once the participants had to return to their traditional desks, the results of the study were confirmed since their stress levels and energy levels immediately returned to what they were before.
This study affirms previous extensive research on the topic that there is a clear causal link between sitting down at work and a negative impact on people’s mental health. This research even goes as far as positing that time spent sitting down at work can increase the chances of developing depression or anxiety disorders.
Fewer Back Problems
The most common health-related problem among office workers all over the world is back pain. This problem is especially present among office workers who sit at a desk all day.
In an attempt to discover whether height-adjustable standing desks could remediate this problem, numerous experiments involving employees with long-term back problems took place.
In general, one study demonstrated that participants experienced up to 32% fewer lower-back pains after only a few weeks of using height-adjustable desks. A second study performed in the US by the CDC verified these findings concerning upper-back pains and neck pains.
The participant of this study experienced roughly 54% fewer problems after only 1 month.
Lower Blood Sugar Levels
It is always recommended to keep a close eye on your blood sugar levels and this is particularly true for office workers. That is to say, high blood sugar levels have a detrimental on your health.
According to Glenn Gaesser, the senior author of the School of Nutrition and Health Promotion at Arizona State University, you need to make an effort each day to get your levels down as much as you can.
In this department, high-adjustable desks can provide a great solution. Indeed, some studies show that standing up, walking slowly, or cycling slowly are great alternatives to time spent sitting around to manage your blood sugar levels.
In the context of this study, participants had to spend approximately 2.5 hours each day standing up to show the benefits. Naturally, 2.5 hours of standing up are manageable and thus, office workers can easily meet this goal.
As an extra tip, the study reported that it is best to stand up after lunchtime since this can provide the most optimal results as regards lowering your blood sugar levels.
Better Health and Longer Life Span
Finally, research also suggests that there is a strong link between a lot of time spent sitting down and early death. This is consistent with research suggesting that there is a strong link between time spent sitting down, diabetes type 2, and various kinds of heart disease.
Even more so, there is a collection of 18 experiments and studies that demonstrates that people who spend a lot of time sitting down could have a 49% higher risk of early death. With people who exercise and stand up a lot, this risk is significantly lower.
On a positive note, there is another study that about 3 hours each day of decreasing the time spent sitting around can already prolong the average person’s life span by 2 years.
It should be mentioned that while these studies suggest a strong link between sitting and early death, neither of them demonstrates a causal link. Nevertheless, they provide a sufficient amount of evidence to support the claim that standing up more instead of sitting down can do wonders for the average persons life span.