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Too much time in front of a computer: standing desks as a solution

 
steward
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I spend most of my days in front of a computer. A few years ago, I started having lower back pain from sitting too much. Some days it was really bad. I got a better chair, but it only helped a bit.

When I changed job, I got a computer stand like this one, and have really enjoyed it. I would say that I stand about 50% of the time. The great thing about this stand is that it can be lowered or raised really quickly.

You can get it here.

I thought I would share here for people who are in the same situation I am in.
 
steward
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I want one of those SOOOO badly!

That's a bit pricey.. Wonder if we can find cheaper, still good quality ones.
 
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The hoarder junk in my office is piled too deep on it to allow a photo, but I have a standing desk improvised from things on hand. From floor upwards it goes:

- 4 of those bed-raiser plastic risers;
- a tall narrow wooden table;
- an additional wooden riser made of 2x6 lumber with 1x6 slats on top;
- a large cardboard box that a 24" flat-screen monitor came in.

When I was computer gaming a lot, the standing desk was my way of self-limiting my gaming time. At first (heavy as I am) my feet wouldn't allow more than an hour or so of gaming on any given day, even using one of those rubber standing mats in front of the desk (which I recommend). But over the course of about six weeks I got more accustomed, and my feet no longer would start to hurt no matter how long I stood there. All in all, I found the standing desk very pleasant to use, so much so that I plan to rejigger it to hold my work computers. (But that's a big job because of the aforementioned hoarder junk.)
 
Adrien Lapointe
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Cassie Langstraat wrote:I want one of those SOOOO badly!

That's a bit pricey.. Wonder if we can find cheaper, still good quality ones.



I actually have this one



which I thought was more expensive, but is actually cheaper.

Ergotron for iMac
 
Cassie Langstraat
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Yeah, my problem is that I am currently struggling with a laptop situation. I guess I bet i could find a super cheap monitor and keyboard, and then just connect them to my laptop with an htmi cord or something.
 
steward
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Paul bought me a hand-crank adjustable desk that is a little less $$ than Adrien's version.



48" Hand Crank Adjustable Desk - walnut top

Fully cranked up, it is just the right height for my keyboard (I'm 5'8" tall) though I need to put my monitor on a stand or box* to raise it a bit higher. I imagine it might not go high enough for a taller person. (*Currently using this cable box, which while plastic, is a brilliant solution for managing desk cords and cables! My monitor rests on it okay, though the monitor stand base is a couple inches wider than the cable box.)

The hand crank takes some time, which I've viewed as good computer break, but I think it's deterring me slightly from using it as a standing desk. Mostly, I was having difficulty working up to being able to stand very long, plus keeping my workspace clear enough to feel like I could easily shift between sitting and standing, so I have not yet used it for standing very much yet.

This version, 48" Hand Crank Adjustable Desk - black and silver, is two levels instead of one, and is currently $10 less than the wood top version.



The wheels at the bottom are high quality, and work well, even on carpet. Now, if I could just get myself in the habit of standing more...

 
Adrien Lapointe
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Jocelyn Campbell wrote:
The hand crank takes some time, which I've viewed as good computer break, but I think it's deterring me slightly from using it as a standing desk. Mostly, I was having difficulty working up to being able to stand very long



I find that my legs get tired after standing for a while. One of my colleagues has a non-adjustable standing desk and he uses a comfort mat to make it easier to stand all day.



Not sure what brand his is, but here is one the looks good.

Jocelyn Campbell wrote:
plus keeping my workspace clear enough to feel like I could easily shift between sitting and standing, so I have not yet used it for standing very much yet.



That is what I like about the stand, all my papers are on the desk and I can raise or lower the computer itself.
 
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I sit in front of this computer for around 15 hours a day. I don't know, but my wrist hurts if I try to operate it while I'm standing.
 
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Standing just moves the problem from one part of your body to another.

I got a good chair and a wireless keyboard and mouse so that I don't use the laptop keypad any more. My desk has a keyboard drawer which I use with the wireless keyboard and mouse. The arms of the chair are adjusted so that I have full support when I'm using the mouse.

I take microbreaks every 15-20 minutes and do a bit of stretching.

I no longer have carpel tunnel syndrome or back problems.

The attached which I got from a local physiotherapist does an excellent job of laying out a body-healthy approach to computer use.

Filename: Physiotherapy-Approach.pdf
Description: Physiotherapy Approach
File size: 1 megabytes
 
Adrien Lapointe
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Mike Haych wrote:Standing just moves the problem from one part of your body to another.



I think the interesting part about that stands is that I end up moving more just from changing from standing to sitting and vice-versa.

The small break every few minutes is a really good idea, I am just really bad at stopping what I am doing to take them
 
Devaka Cooray
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This reminds me of a video made by AsapScience about an year ago.

Why sitting is bad:



And their solution:




 
Mother Tree
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Sitting - the good, the bad and the ugly

 
Jocelyn Campbell
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I was looking for some computer desk things and I found these:

A standing monitor/keyboard platform on etsy (where you can order shelf heights to fit your specifications)



And, almost better for some permies, monitor standing desk DIY plans on esty:



 
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The idea of a standing desk doesn't seem appealing to me - not because I'm lazy or don't care about my health, but standing in one spot is incredibly uncomfortable (coming from a guy who spend 10 years in the culinary industry). I always felt more muscle pain on those nights we were slow rather than running around the kitchen like a chicken with its head cut off.

I have heard of treadmill desks and I like that concept a lot better. Walking at a slow pace while on the computer seems like a better fix than standing in the same place.

Just a though.
 
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