Don’t Just Stand There

Doug’s just not there yet, ok?

It turns out there’s more to a standing desk than just getting up

It’s almost Labor Day. The wise among us will be taking this week – the last quiet one of the summer – to tune up their workstations for the fall push.

At this point, most everyone’s aware of the health benefits of a standing desk. And we’ve covered which standing desks are the best in breed. But like anything, new awareness brings more studies. A recent one suggests that standing may actually not be the best option – instead, we should be sitting, reclined at precisely a 135 degree angle.

While that’s interesting, we don’t expect a sudden surge in La-Z-Boy stock based on office worker demand. It is, however, worth a look at whether we’re standing correctly or not.

Let’s start with how to actually stand. Lifehacker’s post on how to stand in a well-aligned and balanced way is quite good. (It’s all about “the tripod of your foot”, people.)

Height, of course, is another concern. Here’s a quick tutorial on optimal desk height.

And if you’ve ever tried an underfoot mat, you’re unlikely to go back to the hardwood any time soon. A good one will relieve all kinds of pressure on your back, knees, and feet. The Imprint CumulusPro (approximately $50 on Amazon) is among the consensus favorites.

Footwear is another matter. There’s a camp that thinks you shouldn’t wear shoes at all while working at a standing desk, including Dr. Benno Nigg, who runs the Human Performance Lab at the University of Alberta. For the shoeless, the kybun mat (a bit more expensive at $130 and up), is apparently the way to go.

Use this week to get yourself set up. After all, most people won’t – may as well get ahead while you can.

Now go forth (and align thyself).