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How to Choose the Right Standing Desk

How to Choose the Right Standing Desk

It’s a lot easier to make the decision to switch to a standing desk than it is to actually choose a standing desk. From casual bloggers about workplace habits, to research studies and educational websites, there is no shortage of information available showing that sedentary lifestyles, including sitting at work for extended periods, are bad for your health. We know that prolonged sitting is unhealthy, and we know that standing and movement have short- and long-term benefits on your mind and body alike.

Switching to a standing desk seems like a no-brainer.

There are quite a few different standing desks to choose from, though, all with unique features and quirks. There are a few factors to consider when deciding which standing desk is right for you, and this article will help you make that decision.

Desk Adjustability

Perhaps the most important question is how often you’d like to sit or stand, and whether you’d like to be doing exclusively one or the other. In general, most experts recommend moderation, meaning that it’s healthiest to switch between sitting and standing throughout the day, rather than committing entirely to one or the other.

It’s a good idea to work up to splitting your time between the two, sitting and standing each for 30 minutes out of an hour. A fixed-height desk is possible but inconvenient. Our range of standing desks are all adjustable & electric, making switching a breeze!

You’ll either need to use a tall chair or stool to sit at a standing desk or improvise height with assorted office objects to stand at a sitting desk.  It’s more practical to invest in a desk that’s adjustable, able to move up high enough and down low enough to accommodate both positions.

A powered standing desk comes with an electric motor that can easily move and support any amount of weight on your desk (within reason). Many of these have an internal memory, which you can preset to the various sitting and standing heights that you prefer. There are manual adjustment desk options as well, but we have found these models to discourage standing as the process becomes a hassle.

These are typically adjusted with a hand crank, like roll-down windows in old cars. For both powered and manual standing desk options, it’s wise to be mindful of any mechanical bits and pieces that can pinch skin or catch on clothes and office equipment.

Works Well With Others

Whether you choose an automatic or manual standing desk, it’s important to consider the needs of everyone who will be using it. If you share your workspace with coworkers, they will all need to adjust the desk position to suit their height. An extremely tall person using a standing desk that is positioned for a very short person—and vice versa—will experience posture problems and the resulting health issues that standing desks exist to avoid in the first place.  A communal desk needs to be adjustable to a wide range of height points, to make it accessible to everyone in the office.

The spaciousness, arrangement, and aesthetic appearance of your workplace, as well as the nature of your work, might all be factors in your decision. If you work in a traditional office, your needs might be completely different than those of a mechanic or lab technician. Consider how much weight you’ll need the desk to support, and how much space you’ll need, based on how many people you’ll share the space with and how much equipment, paperwork, and supplies you use at any one time.

Adapt To Your Needs

Some people need to spread out over a large surface area, but others work in small cubicles and need to optimize their ergonomics. It may be that a huge, spacious, freestanding standing desk is the best option for you, but in many cases, it’s more practical to just buy an attachment for the top of your desk. This is the most flexible option, and most suitable for people who aren’t sure they want to invest in new furniture. If you frequently move workplaces or use coworking spaces, and want to use a standing desk at different locations, an add-on attachment makes a lot of sense. You can carry it with you when you travel and use it at hotels, or take it with you conveniently if you change jobs or move homes.

Whether you’re in one office space or moving around, make sure that your standing desk will be able to reach nearby outlets and access cables and other equipment that you need. You might need to invest in extension cords if your own charger cables aren’t long enough to accommodate your desk height. Make it easy to make the switch, and don’t frustrate yourself with new challenges.

There are plenty of accessories available to manage cords so that you don’t get tangled up or annoyed when trying to adapt to your new standing desk. Be sure to explore our site and include any desk accessories you may need.

The DIY Route

With a little bit of creativity and ingenuity, you can almost always find equipment and objects to incorporate into your workplace routine to raise your desk height.

Even hotels and coworking spaces have objects like wastebaskets, mini-fridges, and crates that can be improvised into standing desks in a pinch. If you just want to try out working at a standing desk, this temporary route is a great place to start, as it’s free or low-cost, and doesn’t involve a lot of effort or time.

If you are already committed to a standing desk and have a lot more time on your hands, you can design and build a standing desk that meets your needs exactly. This can be as simple or as complex as you wish. The first step is to measure your workstation. Zen offers retrofit kits to help you turn any desktop into a standing desk with ease. Though a DIY solution involves a little more time and effort, it’s a great way to incorporate your own style and ensure you’re getting exactly what you need.

The Factors That Matter

Every person’s workplace needs are different. Some people need portable office equipment above all else, which necessitates lightweight adaptations and add-ons that can be moved from place to place.

Other people prioritize aesthetics and spaciousness over ergonomics and portability. It’s great that there are so many standing desk options to accommodate the great variety of office needs.

To make the right choice, you just need a little bit of planning and foresight. Once you measure yourself, measure your space, and write down your needs and desires, you’ll be several steps ahead in the process of choosing the standing desk that’s right for you. To help you make the transition, here are tips on how to use standing desks the best way.