For thousands and thousands of years, humans have been an active species. We specialized in delicately woven muscles that let us accomplish feats no other creature can. We have walked incredible distances, carried weighty burdens, built civilizations that reached the sky.
As our technology advanced, we have gained many comforts we did not have before. Electricity, books, computers— we have acquired all kinds of innovations intended to make our lives easier and happier. And, for the most part, they have.
However, our modern lifestyle can also lead to stress, overwork, and neglect of our physical and mental health. How many of us have found ourselves toiling away through the night, before that last minute deadline? Who hasn’t surprised themselves crouching over a desk in a dark room at 2 a.m.?
These habits— and many others— add up to a less-than-healthy lifestyle. We need to find better, more healthful, ways to work.
Some problems in the office landscape
If you look inside a normal office, the landscape that will greet you is populated with cubicles, worn chairs and paper-covered, low desks. This sort of setting leads to cramped movement and stale social interaction. Most importantly, it keeps us from reaching our full potential.
Sitting at a desk for prolonged periods of time is scientifically proven to be detrimental to your health. According to Mayo Clinic, it increases the risks of several medical conditions (such as cardiovascular disease and cancer) and is directly linked to a higher body fat percentage and high blood pressure.
The mental setbacks sitting desks produce are also significant. Psychology Today tells us that these can include depression, psychological distress and, overall, reduced well-being. Sitting desks contribute to a feeling of isolation in the workplace, while also leading to perceived inactivity and decreased productivity.
Can standing desks be the solution?
Standing desks are not wholly a recent innovation. In fact, they have existed for quite some time: famous historical figures such as Virginia Woolf, Leonardo da Vinci, and Winston Churchill have been known to use one. If you choose to work at a standing desk, you are in good company!
What are, then, the benefits of standing desks? They greatly reduce your risks of contracting life-threatening diseases, help you stay fit and improves your posture, relieving your long-suffering neck and shoulders. Mentally, standing desks are also highly beneficial: they boost productivity, encourage healthy social interactions and prevent mental illnesses such as depression.
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