The Ultimate Guide To Standing Desks

By Robert David Orr / Last updated: Oct 26, 2022

Standing desks have taken the world by storm since so many people are working from home these days.

And they’re wildly popular because of the benefits that come with using one.

But there’s a lot of confusion out there about what exactly is a standing desk and why you should or shouldn’t buy one for your office.

So I’ve put together this comprehensive guide so you have everything you need to know about standing desks,

are desks that you can stand at while working. They come in different shapes and sizes but all of them have one thing in common: they allow you to work from a standing position.

In this guide we’re going to cover everything from the basics, to the nitty gritty details so that you’re equipped with everything you need to know about standing desks.

In this article, I’ll show you why standing desks are becoming increasingly popular, and provide you with some great tips on how to choose the perfect standing desk for you.

Real quick: before we get too far along here, if you want to get more great ideas for your gaming room or home office and connect with other home office hackers to make your space the best join my free private Facebook group, Home Office Hacks here.

What Is A Standing Desk?

A standing desk is a desk that allows you to stand while you work.

Even though there is a tidal wave of popularity in 2022 for standing desks, they’re actually not new at all.

Marie Antoinette had a special standing desk that she used while she was pregnant.

Drafters and architects have been using standing desks forever.

And numerous famous writers in history have done their writing while standing like, Charles Dickens, Ernest Hemingway, Thomas Jefferson, and Winston Churchill among many others.

Standing desks are known by many different names:

And although it would seem that standing desks are mostly the same from one to another, there is actually big differences in the types of standing desks available on the market today, and we’ll talk more about the similarity and differences below.

Why Do You Need A Standing Desk?

Why do you need a standing desk?

You need to use a standing desk because sitting too much is absolutely toxic for your health.

Conversely, using a standing desk is good not only for your health but for so many other reasons too.

Standing desk users can reduce their chances of gaining weight by increasing the number of calories they burn when they stand compared to sitting.

Studies have also shown that standing can help with decreasing blood glucose levels, and other heart-related conditions and ailments.

In addition, there are numerous benefits associated with productivity, mood improvement, and pain reduction.

If you suffer from any sort of health challenge or simply wish to be more healthy, then having a standing desk can help you achieve these goals.

Using a standing desk:

  • helps prevent back pain
  • improves posture
  • reduces stress
  • makes you happier at work
  • increases productivity
  • gives you more energy
  • makes you healthier

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Still curious? Click here to find out what are the advantages of using a standing desk?

What Types of Standing Desks are There?

There are a variety of different kinds of standing desks available today.

Some are adjustable, some are not.

Some are adjustable electric desks, others are fixed height standing desks.

Some are even built for exercise while you work!

One of the most popular innovations of late is the treadmill desk, a hybrid between a standing desk and treadmill.

When selecting a standing desk, it’s important to take into consideration various factors such as cost, size, height, design, material, and ease of assembly.

Here are some types of standing desks:

Electric Motor Standing Desk – An electric motor standing desk is by far the most popular standing desk currently available on the market and comes in just about every conceivable configuration imaginable.

Manual Adjusting Standing Desks – Instead of an electric motor, manual adjusted standing desks employ a user-operated hand crank mechanism that’s built in to the desk to raise and lower the workstation.

Hydraulic Standing Desk – hydraulic standing desks use pumps to pressurize tubes under the desktop surface and are claimed to last longer and be more durable.

Fixed Height Standing Desks – Fixed height standing desks are very similar to a regular desk, however, the main difference is that it’s constructed so that the desktop surface is easily accessible when standing. It is not adjustable.

DIY Standing Desks – DIY standing desks are desks that are custom created by the user to match their exact specifications and are a great option for crafty, handy people.

Exercise Standing Desks – Exercise standing desks are the kinds of desk where you can exercise while working. Treadmill desks are a popular option for this kind of desk, as are bike desks.

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Which type of desk is right for you? Click here to learn about What kind of standing desks are there?

What are Standing Desks Made Of?

A variety of materials are used in the manufacture of standing desks. Here are the most common building materials you’ll encounter in standing desks.

Real Solid Wood – Wood is a surprisingly common and available material used in manufacturing standing desks. Most wood standing desks are manufactured using hardwoods like maple, cherry, oak, etc. that are stunning visually and strong.

Butcher block – Butcherblock is a type of wood that is often used in the manufacture or kitchen countertops and makes for a fantastic and beautiful desktop surface. It’s a dense slab of wood that is usually dark in color.

Wood veneer – Veneer is a thin layer of wood that is applied over an existing piece of wood. The process of applying veneer is done to increase the appearance of the original piece of wood. Veneer is often used on top of plywood or MDF.

Composite – Composite is yet another popular choice among standing desk manufacturers. Some composite standing desks are manufactured with plywood, particle board, MDF (Medium Density Fibreboard), and other composites.

Laminate – Laminate is another popular choice for manufacturers of standing desks. Some laminate standing desks are manufactured with high quality veneers, such as birch, maple, walnut, mahogany, and others.

Metal & Steel – Metal is another commonly used material in the construction of standing desks. Some metal standing desks are manufactured with steel frames, aluminum frames, and other metals. Steel is also used in the construction of standing desk frames. Some steel standing desks are manufactured with stainless steel, carbon steel, and other alloys.

Plastic – Plastics are also used in the manufacture of many standing desks. Many plastic standing desks are manufactured with polypropylene, acrylic, and other plastics.

Glass – Glass is also used in the manufacture or standing desks. Some glass standing desks are manufactured with dense, strong, tempered glass, which helps prevent breakage.

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What is a Good Size for a Home Office Desk?

You can find standing desks in a wide variety of sizes ranging from small to large. Be certain to choose one that will fit into your space. Here’s how to figure what will work best for you.

Determine whether there’s enough room for a desk by measuring the available floor space. To measure the size of an office room, first determine its dimensions by allowing yourself enough extra space so that there is no less than 2 feet between each wall and any furniture placed within it.

Measure the length of the room where the desk will be placed and any doorways or stairs that the desk must cross before arriving at its final location.

Measuring yourself is an essential part of getting the right size desk for your home office.

If you think you need a keyboard tray for your desk, measure where you think your arms will naturally rest when standing up from your chair.

If you’re going to be using multiple screens at once, pay attention to where they are located relative to each other.

Generally speaking, a desk that’s roughly 60 inches wide by 30 inches deep is a good size.

However, your needs might be a little different.

Your space may be small, so you need something smaller.

If you are a gamer or programmer who has a multiple monitor setup, a 60 x 30 would be a good call, but if you just want to do your homework or use the laptop, a 30 x 24 will be enough.

It all depends on how much room you have available and how much space you need on the desk to accommodate your stuff.

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Get the full report on What is a good size for a home office desk?

What Desk Should I Buy For My Home Office?

First off, when it comes to figuring out which desk you need to get for your home office, you need to consider the available space you have for a desk.

You also need to consider what kind of storage space you’re going to need to go with your standing desk.

Do you need additional shelves?

What about a small desk cabinet with drawers?

Storage space in your home office is important because it allows you to helps you organize everything, keep your workspace neat and clean and keeps stuff of sight so it’s distracting.

What kind of work are you planning to do at your home?

So many of us now work permanently from our home office.

So the amount of work you plan on doing from your home office will also affect which desk you should get for your workspace.

You’ll also need to figure out what features your desk should have and what materials you want it to be made from.

Some prefer custom real wood. Others are ok with laminate. You have to find the right one for your needs and budget.

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Still curious? Click here to learn more about What desk should I buy for my home office?

What’s The Best Adjustable Desk for A Home Office?

With so many options it’s easy to get confused about what you should get if you’re shopping for a new standing desk.

There are great solutions at every price point, but the best standing desk we’ve found is the Uplift V2 Bamboo adjustable height desk.

It’s extra large desk with a desktop surface made of bamboo and measuring at 80″x30″. It has advanced height controls, and comes with a heavy-duty electric motor than can lift up to 355 lbs. (161 kg), along with built-in safety features and has an outstanding 15 year all-inclusive warranty.

However it’s not always within the reach of everyone’s budget.

There are so many fantastic options available and finding the right adjustable desk for your home office setup can be overwhelming, so I’ve put together several options for standing desks where you can find a great desk regardless of what your budget is.

Are Electric Standing Desks Reliable?

Whenever it comes to new(ish) technology it’s understandable to be a little skeptical about how reliable things are going to be over time.

Electric standing desks are no exception.

They’re wildly popular, still somewhat new in terms of concept, and there are so many manufacturers in the space, it’s fair to question the quality of what you’re getting when you spend your hard-earned money on a new standing desk.

However, you can rest assured that, everything else considered, electric standing desks are reliable.

They are not only easy to operate but also constructed from durable materials and will last for a long time.

Electric standing desks are robust, versatile, and strong enough to move through a lift cycle (1 lift and 1 lower = 1 lift cycle) several times each day without any issues.

And when compared to the alternatives, electric standing desks have become the clear choice among people working from their home office looking for a reliable standing desk solution.

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Still curious? Click here to find out if Electric standing desks are reliable.

How Much Weight Can a Standing Desk Hold?

The standing desk is one of the most popular trends in office furniture right now. Many people are wondering how much weight they can hold on their desks and what kind of desk will be best for them.

There’s not a simple answer to the question of how much a standing desk can hold because there are so many types of height adjustable desks, and each of them is different.

Standing desks can hold anywhere from 150 to 700 pounds. Additionally, higher-end electric desks can hold more items than lower-end ones, as well as be more durable.

The range between 300 and 700 pounds is quite a bit.

Thankfully, you can probably narrow down how much weight you will actually need relatively easily.

The most important thing is to think about how you will use your standing desk, what you will put on top of it, and how much you are willing to spend.

With these factors in mind, you will likely find that an average electric standing desk that holds 150 to 200 pounds should suffice.

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Need more info? Check out my article on How much weight can a standing desk hold?

Are Standing Desks Good For Your Back?

If you’ve ever spent a lot of time sitting at a desk, if you’re like me, you’ve noticed that it doesn’t take too long for your back to start aching.

And it only increases the more that you sit.
Most studies show that prolonged periods of time spent seated are extremely harmful to your health. They may lead to serious back pain, heart disease, obesity and other really bad things.

However, using a standing desk can help alleviate back pain.

Standing desks help to improve your posture and put less strain on your neck and lower spine.

Your body is designed to be upright, with good posture, shoulders back and chin up.

When you get away from that posture too much by being seated at a desk all day , it causes your muscles to tighten up as well as your joints to stiffen.

This leads to poor circulation, which can cause muscle cramps or even worse, chronic pain.

So, by switching to a standing desk, you’ll be able to reduce the amount of time you spend sitting down and increase the amount of time you’re standing up which encourages proper posture and will be good for your back.

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Still curious? Click here to learn more about Are standing desks good for your back?

Do You Need An Anti Fatigue Mat For A Standing Desk?

If you stand for long periods of time while you’re working from your desk then an anti-fatigue mat is something you’ll almost certainly want to have in your office.

They do a great job of helping you stay comfortable during long periods of standing.

An effective anti-fatigue mat can deliver comfort and stability when standing while working at an standing desk.

They provide greater support for your body’s natural posture, which reduces stress on your joints and muscle groups.

Your feet take a lot of abuse when you’re standing at your desk working. Just standing too long by itself can cause aches and pains all over.

An anti-fatigue mat offers a comfortable surface for your feet when standing at your desk that will help you stay comfortable longer.

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Need more info? Check out my article on Do you need an anti-fatigue mat for a standing desk?

What Other Accessories Do I Need For My Standing Desk?

Using an anti-fatigue mat is just one of the accessories you may want to consider for a standing desk.

But there are several more that will really help you make your desk into a

Foot rest – Next to my anti-fatigue mat this is probably the accessory I use most. Being able to have a place to rest your feet while sitting or standing makes a big difference in your comfort level.

Keyboard tray – Some people love them, others hate them. However, a keyboard tray is something else you want to consider for your standing desk.

Ergonomic gel wrist rest – These are great for easing the pressure points on your wrists and hands. They also help to prevent repetitive motion injuries such as carpal tunnel syndrome.

Headphone stand or hanger – Grovemade makes a very popular headphone stand. Others prefer to use a hanger on their desk to store their headphones. Either way is great to keep them off your desktop surface and keep your work area clean.

Monitor Stand or Desk Shelf – You should definitely consider a monitor shelf for your standing desk. Monitor shelves allow you to raise your computer screen off the surface of your desk so you don’t have to strain to look at your monitor, whether it’s up or down. Plus, many provide additional desktop storage opportunities either underneath the shelf, or with cubby holes to store things.

Monitor Arm – You can use a monitor arm to attach to your desk so that your monitors are completely elevated off the surface of your desk freeing up a ton of space and making keeping your desk clean and organized so much easier.

Desk Mat – instead of a old boring and simple mouse pad, a desk mat, like the ones available from Grovemade are a fantastic addition to your standing desk. They’re great for serving as mouse pads and provide a soft cushioned surface for your desktop.

Storage cabinets – Need additional storage? No problem! You can pick up a storage cabinet like the IKEA Alex cabinet that will provide that extra storage space and will fit neatly underneath your standing desk.

IKEA 401.962.41 Alex Drawer on Casters, White, 26″ Height, 19″ Width, 26″ Length

  • Particleboard
  • Drawer stops prevent the drawer from being pulled out too far

Buy on Amazon

Buy On IKEA

This is just a sampling of the best accessories you can get.

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Still curious? Click here to learn more about What accessories do I need for my standing desk?

Why Are Standing Desks So Expensive?

People who work from home often find standing desk options attractive because they give workers an excuse to stand up occasionally during the course of the day.

Standing desks have become increasingly popular because they’re good for both your body and your mind.

They may seem to be more expensive (that’s not always the case!) but there are some good reasons for it.

It’s because, when making a standing desk, there needs to be certain types of material used and a particular kind of design employed.

Standing desks have a distinctly ergonomic approach, which requires specific engineering so that the user can repetitively raise and lower a desktop  surface –  all features that are unique to a standing desk.

A standing desk is not simply a piece of furniture, it’s a piece of office equipment not all that different than other machines that you have in your office.

But just because they can be a little more expensive than a regular desk doesn’t mean you can’t find a really good option in your price range.

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Need more details? Check out my report on Why are standing desks so expensive?

Next Steps

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Robert David Orr

Robert is a writer & creator, author of the WordPress Website Blueprint, award winning web developer, and leader in digital strategy. He's also a tenured work at home veteran who's been working from home for more than 10 years. Learn more. Got questions? Reach out and connect here - Contact Home Office Hacks here.

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