Do sit or stand desks grow to end up in more activity? No, because standing is also sedentary. The effects of sit or stand desks on health are not as obvious as it is claimed. The problem is not with sitting or standing, but having a sedentary activity that consumes little energy. The position in itself is in reality of no importance whatsoever.
Points of Attention: Risk Analysis
It is obvious that an analysis of the ergonomic risks associated with a workstation with a screen should not only lead to the purchase of sit or stand desks, but that it requires a real reflection.
These offices must indeed meet certain requirements. For example, they should be matte, non-reflective and clear (but not white). The lifting system must function properly and the desk must be sufficiently height adjustable (65 to 125 centimeters). In addition, the risk analysis should not only focus on the desk, but also take into account the chair and the various accessories (screen, keyboard, etc.). It is there that the use of the Aiterminal’s standing desk frame is most essential.
Sit or stand desks should also be used correctly. It is indeed very likely that employees misuse them. We must therefore teach them to do it well, and to vary the positions.
Some common problems demonstrate the importance of correct use of sit or stand desks:
- Staying too long in a static position causes fatigue and discomfort
- If the standing position is too low, users will tend to lean on the elbows, which are bad for the body
- Working while standing causes increased wrist flexion when using the keyboard.
- When sitting, the wrist is in a more neutral and therefore in better position.
To bring about a lasting change in behavior (in this case: working seated and standing), training is not enough, and support is essential. Employees must be made aware and encouraged to really vary their positions.
As a first step, they should be made aware of the risks associated with prolonged sitting and the benefits of changing positions. After this briefing, they should undergo training and be instructed on the correct use of a sit or stand desk.
It can then be useful to share as a group the first experiences related to this new way of working. Tools can also be used to promote behavior change, such as a position change reminder via an application or a computer program, for example.
Office salespeople should not be blindly believed when they claim that sit or stand models by definition improve health, mental well-being, focus and productivity. Office workers should be encouraged to change position regularly. A sit or stand desk can help, but there are plenty of other solutions. For better results on health, physical activity and energy expenditure should be encouraged. The various points of attention mentioned can promote healthier office work, both physically and mentally.
Finally, let’s not forget that the sit or stand desks can represent a heavy investment. It is therefore worth looking for a supplier who offers a warranty also on the lifting system and allows you to try them out for a month, for example.