SIT/STAND DESKS? HOW TO TRANSITION TO THEIR USE!
One great intervention that we’re seeing more of is the Sit/Stand desk. We all know that sitting for an entire work day can be bad for your health/posture, and this is why the sit/stand desk was invented. More and more patients are telling us that they’ve bought one for themselves since they’re working from home and/or their office has installed these types of desks.
Although it is great news that you may have a standing desk, it is important to know how to use it. Gradually easing yourself into standing more often is the way to go and not go from sitting all the time to standing for too long. A common situation I’ve heard is patients will get to work and stand for 3 hours straight before sitting for most of the day and then standing again for another 1-2 hours at the end of the day. This may cause other issues like low back, leg, or foot pain if your body isn’t ready to make such a drastic change.
The key to using a sit/stand desk is variability. The body likes movement and not being stuck in one position for too long (sitting too much or standing too much). Therefore, changing positions often will be beneficial for the body. A good way to start (if you’ve never used this type of desk before) is to stand for 15 mins after 45-60mins of sitting. It is important to get up and walk around or change positions every hour. So, starting the first week with 15 min intervals of standing every hour is the most reasonable way to begin. As your body gets used to the change, try increasing the amount of time you’re standing for. Eventually, the ideal scenario would have your sitting for 30 mins then standing for 30 mins. Lastly, you can include some simple range of motion movements or stretching during the periods of time that you’re standing. Hope this information helps you manage the transition to your new desk!
If you are still having problems with pain and discomfort in your neck, shoulders, arms or your lower back/hips, please don’t hesitate to give us a call. We can help you with your postural issues and relieve the stress on overworked joints and muscles as well as teach you strategies to manage the day.
Dr. Aleem Remtulla, DC and the FIH Team; www.foundationforintegratedhealth.com; 604 988.70