So, you’ve added a standing desk to your workspace to help ward off the negative health consequences of sitting all day long. You’re now consistently moving and incorporating a balance of sitting and standing. But have you forgotten about ergonomics? While a balance of sitting and standing is the most important, you’ll also want to consider the height of your workstation, the position of your monitors and keyboard and your ergonomic chair adjustments to make sure that your body is fully supported whether you’re taking a stand or sitting for a bit.
Set Your Workstation at the Proper Height
Your workstation should not cause you to strain to reach something that is high or low. If you are reaching to look up or down, it can cause a lot of strain on your shoulders, neck and back. Having an adjustable height desk ensures that you can move the workstation up or down to best accommodate your individual height. You will want to position your workstation (including your keyboard) in such a way that your arms are parallel to the ground while typing (no stress on elbows or shoulders) and that you’re not looking up or down at monitors, but instead straight ahead, keeping your shoulders and neck relaxed. It’s recommended that your monitor is placed about an arm’s length from your face. Read our complete guide to positioning your monitor here.
Just standing at your desk for the recommended amount of time isn’t enough – you’ll need to be sure that you are standing correctly. Otherwise, you may still experience those aches and pains that you have been trying to avoid. Having your monitor at the right angle and your workstation at the right height for you will help you to stand correctly, but remember to keep your back straight and shoulders relaxed. Avoid reaching above or behind the shoulder line. Be sure to also avoid crossing your legs in any matter when standing and avoid locking your knees – both of these movements can disrupt blood flow. Instead, keep your feet pointed towards your workstation and your knees loose and comfortable.
Consider Your Feet
Even if you are just standing for short bursts throughout the day, you’ll want to consider how your feet are holding up. If they are sore or uncomfortable after standing, be sure to look into your footwear and add an anti-fatigue mat to your workspace. Switching to practical footwear for standing is ideal, and anti-fatigue mats can make a huge difference when it comes to supporting your feet and legs.
Take a Seat
Sitting all day isn't good for you, but neither is standing all day. As a general rule of thumb, you should be standing 15 minutes for every two hours that you sit. When you are seated, be sure to maintain proper posture to reap the health benefits associated with good ergonomics. Read our guide to proper posture here, and our guide to chair ergonomics here.
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