jb… a weblog by Jonathan Buys

Standing Around

I was having problems with my lower back, not an uncommon issue, especially for those of us who spend our day staring at a computer screen. My problem was exasperated by my poor posture in my chair. I tend to slouch after a couple of hours, and then slowly slide lower and lower into my chair until, at the last moment before I fall out of it, I reposition myself and sit up again. I also run in the morning, and I rarely have time to stretch properly after a run, a bad habit that needs to be addressed. By the end of the day I’d stand up and crack my lower back three or four times, and know that if I turned in the wrong way I would be out of commission for a week or so while my back untwisted itself.

During a trip to our main office in San Diego back in January, I noticed that quite a few people were using VARIDESK adjustable standing desks. Intrigued, I asked around, and after several months of neglect I made the appropriate arrangements. Work was kind enough to furnish me with a VARIDESK ProPlus 36 about three weeks ago, and I’ve been standing most of the work day since.

I don’t stand the entire day, and when I do stand I’m not always typing. I do tend to spend a lot of time at the keyboard, but I notice that I tend to take more breaks to walk around and think things through before returning to the keyboard again. At the end of the day, I’m physically tired, and mentally exhausted. Switching to a standing desk leaves me with a feeling of accomplishing something by the end of the day, and while I’m not sure if I’m being more productive with the standing desk, I do feel that I’m not being noticeably less. The benefit to me is more in how I feel after getting home, I’m ready to rest and be with the family.

The standing desk is adjustable, and takes up a big corner of my normal desk. While it is perfectly comfortable to work on standing up, I now prefer to take my MacBook out of it’s BookArc and work on an empty space beside the adjustable desk and not use the external monitor while sitting down. Mainly because the desk is so big that when it is in the down position it hangs over the inside corner of the desk, and puts the keyboard at an uncomfortable position. Personally I find this to be motivation to spend more time standing.

After three weeks my back is bothering me less, and I don’t have a problem standing for several hours at a time. The long term benefits are yet to be seen, obviously, but my hope is that the standing desk returns a few precious moments of health to my upcoming later years. Meanwhile, I expect to spend a lot of time standing around.

work health