We’ve all heard that standing desks save you from the numerous health issues caused by sitting too much. This includes diabetes, cancer, obesity, and countless other health disorders.
Ruth Gronde, a professional ergonomic therapist at Piedmont, sums it up nicely:
“A height-adjustable standing desk is a great way to get more movement. You’re burning a few more calories, it’s better for your circulation, and studies have shown that it can increase productivity.”
Today we’re taking things to a new realm.
Actually, it’s the same dialogue, only from a different perspective. We’re exploring the minds of trained Chiropractors to find out if they recommend standing desks or not.
Do chiropractors recommend standing desks?
Like other health practitioners, chiropractors strongly advocate adjustable standing desks over standard workstations because they enhance blood flow throughout the body and prevent neck pain, back pain, and a myriad of other health issues. However, they also advise against indulging standing desks too much, as it may lead to some health problems of its own.
Medical experts have extensively discussed the need for people to find the right balance between sitting too much and standing too little.
The endgame of these conversations is usually to suggest a list of solutions that can help achieve this said balance, and one ergonomic home-office furniture, the adjustable standing desk, is often a regular feature.
If you think of standing desks, you’ll probably wonder:
- What do chiropractors think of standing desks?
- Should you use standing desks all day?
- Is it healthier to work with a standing desk?
- Do standing desks improve productivity?
- How long should you stand at a standing desk?
Let’s see what the expert chiropractors have to say on the subject.
By the way – before we get too far into it here, if you want to get more great ideas for your gaming room or home office and want to connect with other home office hackers to make your space the best join my free private Facebook group, Home Office Hacks here.
What Do Chiropractors Think Of Standing Desks?
Do chiropractors recommend the use of standing desks?
Yes, they do. But to eradicate any misconception, let’s hear it from the experts.
Dr. Cheree from the Chiropractic Healing Center is a chiropractor in Las Vegas and is a big fan of standing desks.
“You should definitely use a stand-up desk. The caveat, however, is that you have to be using it correctly. Otherwise, you can do more harm than good. One of the most important things is to switch between sitting and standing. Just like sitting for a long time can hurt your health, standing can put a strain on your leg muscles.”
Source: Chiropractic Healing Center
Dr. Cheree goes on to point out that using a standing desk to alternate between sitting and standing can help fight diabetes, prevent weight gain, and help reduce back pain.
If you sit down for 8 hours straight, you’re going to be stiff. Maybe not at first, but over time you will feel it.
When you move around, there are muscles that fire up and relax, which helps maintain flexibility and mobility.
Standing desks are good for certain individuals who are overweight or suffer from chronic conditions such as diabetes as it helps to offset sedentary habits that can contribute to health problems.
Is It Healthier To Work With A Standing Desk?
People who sit for too long are prone to various health issues – neck pain, heart disease, blood sugar spike, high blood pressure, etc. The list is so long; you could almost mention a new ailment for every time you sit.
But there are people who don’t mind being seated for a while. They even enjoy it!
While many would argue that sitting for prolonged periods of time is unhealthy, others say that it doesn’t matter how much you sit, as long as you take breaks.
“I think a standing desk is a great idea; I think having a variable height is even more important, one that you can raise and lower, that’s easy to raise and lower because you’re going to use it more often if you have the ease of a push of a button.” – Chiropractor Tiffany Renaud
Source: Living Well Center for Integrative Health
Will a Standing Desk Help With Neck Pain?
Yes, it does. Working with an adjustable standing desk means you can switch between different sitting and standing positions. Most importantly, you can maintain a posture that wouldn’t strain your neck.
Dr. Gavin Carr of Stanford Chiropractic in Palo Alto California says this about standing desks:
“When you have a perfect neck, there is a curve here, a 43-degree curve. This position will straighten it out. That’s when you lose the curve.
You lose the vitality of the neck, and you start getting the symptoms down like aching arms, headache, things like that. The same rules apply to sit-down desks.
You want to make sure that when you are up, the screen is at eye level. Either standing or sitting, that will help with the proper position of the neck.”
Chronic neck pain is a symptom that lots of desk-based workers deal with but Dr. Carr tells us that by using the proper ergonomic equipment in our workspace can alleviate that.
The best thing about a standing desk is that it allows you to adjust the height according to your needs so that your eyes are meeting the monitor display at the proper angle.
Does Standing Desk Help With Back Pain?
According to research and multiple opinions from chiropractors and medical experts, standing desks ease back pain.
“As a busy Chiropractor in Stoke-on-Trent, I see dozens of patients who suffer from lower back pain each week. In many cases, these patients are people who spend many hours sitting down each day while at work.”
“There is some evidence to suggest that a standing desk can help you avoid back pain from sitting. One study found that participants experienced a 32% improvement in lower back pain after using a standing desk for several weeks. Another study conducted by the CDC found that participants enjoyed a 54% reduction in back and neck pain after using a standing desk for just four weeks.”
Source: City Chiropractic Clinic
From personal experience I can attest to the fact that my standing desk has been incredibly helpful in helping deal with the back pain I face as a web developer who’s spent a lot of time seated.
Can Standing Desks Improve Mood And Energy Levels?
This shouldn’t come as any surprise but when your body is comfortable, you’re more easily focused and concentration is easier.
People tend to perform better when they don’t suffer from stress, fatigue, and other adverse health conditions resulting from sitting for too long.
Dr. Edward Roper from Precision Chiropractic in New Zealand tells us, “Standing desks appear to have a positive effect on our overall well-being. One study found that standing desks can lower stress and fatigue as well as improve our energy and mood levels. Broader research on sitting and mental health indicates sedentary hours with an increased risk of depression and anxiety.”
We all know how vital mental energy is to doing good work so if you’ve got a standing desk then you should be able to get more done without feeling fatigued.
Should You Use A Standing Desk All Day?
The enthusiasm that comes with all the benefits we hear about alternating between sitting and standing while in the office can quickly turn into frustration if you find yourself spending most of your day in one position only.
Standing too long presents its own set of problems like foot and leg pain, to back pain in new areas.
So should you stand all day?
Absolutely not! Using a standing desk all day is just as detrimental to your health as sitting for too long. And this is where balance comes in.
Dr. Cheree goes on to tell us, “If you don’t use your standing desk properly, you may not see any positive results. One of the most important things is to switch between sitting and standing. Just like sitting for a long time can hurt your health, standing can put a strain on your leg muscles. You also want to use proper posture since, without this, your back will still suffer the consequences and may even be more painful than if you slouched in your seat all day.”
How Long Should You Stand at a Standing Desk?
Standing desks can be counterproductive if you get carried away with standing.
How many hours should you stand at a standing desk?
Chiropractor Tiffany Renaud points teaches us, “I often recommend standing no more than 45 minutes to about an hour or 45 minutes of sitting and just changing it frequently.”
Do Standing Desks Improve Productivity?
Standing desks will help you maintain better posture and avoid serious health problems, ultimately enhancing your productivity level.
But there are times when you need to sit down to take care of business too.
Alternating between sitting and standing is the secret sauce here.
And it’s not just a matter of alternating between sitting and standing.
It’s all about movement.
Walking around your home office to engage with colleagues or clients the movement helps keep your mind sharp and your body healthy.
How Do I Position My Screen And Keypad When Using A Standing Desk?
All the efforts and resources to get a standing desk will count for nothing if you do not correctly use it.
Dr. Mamak Shakib, a posture chiropractor, explains the rules you must follow when positioning your monitor and keypad on a standing desk:
“The middle of your monitor needs to be at your eye level slightly above, increase your font size, so you’re not leaning forward. The other thing is, as you’re typing, your wrists and your elbows are at the same level, so you’re not typing down here or typing up there.”
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