How Long To Stand At A Standing Desk

February 19, 2016

Before we talked about how you are supposed to set up your standing desk: What the right ergonomic heights are, and how your elbows, neck, and wrists should be aligned. Once you have the right standing desk posture, it’s time to figure out how long to keep it. Plenty of people make the switch to a standing-desk lifestyle, but they don’t know how long to stand or sit. Here are some studies and recommendations for how long to stand at a standing desk.

Why Can’t You Just Stand The Whole Time?

In a previous post we talked about how standing all day can be detrimental to your health and comfort. This is one of the benefits of having a height-adjustable standing desk. You can raise or lower the desk with the press of a button. Other standing desk designs are stationary and can only be set to the standing height. The danger in this, especially true with DIY standing desks, is that being unable to return to a sitting position puts you at risk of the dangers of standing too much.

How Long Do You Stand At A Standing Desk?

Here are two recommendations from two well-known groups.

In an article by the Washington Post, they take into account the research from Active Working and Public Health England to recommend their balance between sitting and standing. Based on research and studies, they recommend that you start with a goal of standing for two hours a day and then moving that to four hours a day at work.

Here they stress the importance of easing into the standing-desk lifestyle as opposed to going right for four hours of standing. This number came about because the typical office worker sits for about 10 hours a day, and in order to  fight the affects of sitting you have to break up and reduce that amount of time. Even if you sit for just 30 minutes, your metabolism slows down by 90%. This is one of the reasons people who live a sedentary lifestyle run a high risk of being obese. Keeping your metabolism going is all about finding the balance between sitting and standing.

In another article, published by Cornell University they noted the dangers of sitting or standing too much. As opposed to a daily number, they recommend the 20-8-2 rule: Sit for 20 minutes, stand for 8 minutes, and move around for 2 minutes. This balance every 30 minutes will keep your metabolism going and your body engaged but not overworked.

And for those times when you do have to sit at your standing desk, here is the right way to do it.

Whether you transition from two hours a day to four hours a day or you go for the 20-8-2 standing rule, you are sure to balance your sitting and standing for maximum benefits. The easiest way to adjust the height of your standing desk is with a powered height adjustable standing desk, and Xdesk has all the styles you could ever want.


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