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Are Sit Stand Desks Worth It?

Standing desks have gained immense popularity in recent years, with many professionals and users touting the benefit of back and neck pain relief. Standing is almost always better than sitting but are sit stand desks worth it?  Yes and no.

If I had a “desk job” I would consider an alternative that may take some getting used to but trumps a sit stand desk hands down. But first – here is my case against a standing desk.

  1. Prolonged Standing Can Lead to New Problems

While sitting for extended periods isn’t great for your spine, neither is standing in one place for too long. Prolonged standing can lead to its own set of issues, including muscle fatigue, varicose veins, and increased pressure on the lower back. HINT: You need a dynamic work environment.

  1. Proper Ergonomics Are Still Essential

Just like sitting at a traditional desk, using a standing desk improperly can lead to knee pain, and back and neck pain.  It’s crucial to maintain good posture and ergonomics while standing. Many people make the mistake of slouching or leaning on one leg, which can strain the spine. I’ve seen my fair share of new patients who suffer from standing desk-related low back pain due to poor posture.

  1. Lack of Movement.

One of the main benefits of standing desks is the potential for increased movement throughout the day. Simply standing in one place isn’t enough. Your spine is still….still!  To truly benefit from the standing desk concept, you need to walk, stretch, or even switch between sitting and standing.

If I Had a Desk Job…What would I Do?

If I had a “desk Job” I would consider a walking pad.  Imagine a treadmill tucked under your desk. Walking pads are smaller, flatter, slower and are missing the arm rests you normally see with a treadmill.

walking padWalking pads allow you to walk slowly while working, adding movement to your day without compromising your productivity. Walking pads can reduce the strain on your lower back and leg muscles that often comes with prolonged standing. However, it’s essential to maintain proper posture even while using a walking pad to ensure the best results for your spinal health.

There are some downsides though.  If you want a break, and need to transition to sitting – it’s more challenging than a sit stand desk to go from walking to sitting. You also need some coordination as I imagine there is a risk of falling, and you would definitely need to get used to typing with the gentle sway of a slow walking gait. Overall, I think they are a no-brainer. Walking pads are widely available and you can find them at Best Buy and Amazon.  The reviews speak for themselves.


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