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According to the American Heart Association, the number of Americans working sedentary jobs has increased by 83% since 1950. While this has its advantages, sitting for extended periods is also linked to a number of health concerns. If your job requires you to spend most of your time on a computer, phone or other work that typically requires sitting, a standing desk could improve your health.
Studies have linked sitting for prolonged periods with several health issues, including obesity, high blood pressure, elevated blood sugar, metabolic syndrome and even increased risk of death from cardiovascular disease and cancer.
“Even if you’re actively working, usually your lower body is relatively static, and there is decreased circulation,” occupational therapist Michael Milicia told the Cleveland Clinic. “Also, less movement throughout your day means more aches and pains.”
Too much sitting can tighten muscles and stiffen joints, causing pain. Painful, tense, stiff joints and muscles can make simple activities like walking more difficult and can increase the risks of a fall.
Benefits Of A Standing Desk
There are several ways to offset the health risks of too much sitting. For instance, you can take frequent breaks to stand up and stretch, walk or do a few quick exercises such as squats or lunges. You can also incorporate seated exercises or use an exercise ball chair.
Another excellent option is to use a standing desk. Standing while you work may lower your risk of weight gain and heart disease, reduce blood sugar levels, decrease pain, and improve your mood, energy levels and productivity.
“We saw consistently across the studies an improvement in discomfort and pain as people use the desks,” April Chambers, assistant professor of bioengineering at the University of Pittsburgh, told CNN. “And this was found not only in people who, for example, experienced low back pain, but also in adults with obesity and in healthy populations as well.”
Experts recommend frequently alternating between sitting and standing when using a standing desk. Consider adding an anti-fatigue mat to make standing more comfortable. Also, pay attention to ergonomics to keep stress off your neck and shoulders.
If you are considering making the switch to a standing desk, we have curated a collection of the top-rated options on Amazon.
At $269.99, this Vivo desk is space-efficient while providing adequate room for monitors, laptops and other work materials. Its electric motor lets you adjust the height from 29 inches to 48 inches with the touch of a button. Plus, it has four memory presets so that you can save your preferred heights. The one-piece surface is smooth, stable and capable of supporting up to 176 pounds. It comes in a dozen finishes and combinations, including black, walnut and light wood.
If you prefer sleek simplicity, this streamlined workstation is a popular option. The one-piece desktop offers ample room for a laptop, monitor and other necessities, while the industrial-grade steel frame requires minimal floor space. It features an electronic controller for lowering and raising the desk. You can program up to four presets on the control buttons to switch from sitting to standing, using a treadmill or sitting on an exercise ball. It even has a built-in reminder system to keep you moving throughout the day. Find it on Amazon for $294.99.
This simple desk has more than 8,000 reviews on Amazon with an average rating of 4.6 stars out of 5. The 42-inch-by-24-inch solid work surface is environmentally sourced, and the steel frame can withstand 154 pounds. It has a low-noise motor-lift mechanism providing easy height adjustments from 28 inches to 47.6 inches. Customers report it is easy to put together, and the manufacturer states it takes less than an hour to assemble. At $249.99, you can choose from eight color options, including maple, mahogany and deep black.
If you are looking for fast setup and ease of use, this Flexispot standup desk ($289.99) might be ideal. It comes in just five pieces and can be assembled in minutes. The six-button control panel at the front of the desk lets you program up and down adjustments and includes two USB chargers. The workspace holds up to 110 pounds and features a built-in storage box and two hooks so you can organize cords and hang items such as headphones or bags.
Basic yet highly affordable at $212.87, this adjustable desk has more than 14,900 reviews on Amazon and an average rating of 4.6 stars out of 5. The electric lift system adjusts the workspace height from 28 inches to 46 inches and has a digital display with four memory preset options. It’s available in six styles, such as black, cherry and oak. Reviewers appreciate the ease of assembly and the “extras,” like the wire box for cable management and built-in hooks.
Customers like the size of this standing desk, which has a spacious work area and is available on Amazon for $244.99. The smooth, quiet motor lift raises the desktop from 28.6 inches to 48.2 inches at one inch per second. The two-button controller is user-friendly, and assembly takes about 40 minutes. It’s available in four colors, including maroon, natural and a silver and black combination.
With any one of these highly rated options, you can enjoy the health benefits of a standing desk that suits your needs and budget.