A standing desk is an ergonomic tool in your workspace. It provides many health benefits which go hand in hand with the enabled active standing position. But prolonged standing might cause some degree of fatigue in certain body parts like your legs, lower back, neck, and shoulders – especially if you have been spending the majority of your hours sitting for many YEARS (like so many of us when we sign our lives away to the corporate world). When used properly and with supplemental techniques and devices, you can lessen the fatigue you might experience when using a standing desk and obtain the full health benefits available from these ergonomic assets.
Here are five ways that you can fight fatigue while using your standing desk:
Use correct posture
Certain ailments, aches, decreased energy and immunity, and even difficulty in breathing can be the results of improper posture. Almost 95% of those who suffer from neck and head pains suffer from Forward Head Posture (FHP).
This strained position is due to the weight of the human head which, when not aligned properly with the rest of the body, can result in excessive strain on the neck.
To attain a proper standing position, never stick out your rear end too far; counter this poor positioning by squeezing your bottom muscles (lightly) while you stand. Provide the right tension in your stomach (about 20% of your maximum compression). Let your arms hang freely on your sides with your shoulders set back naturally.
Maintaining this correct posture will help you minimize fatigue while maximizing the benefits of standing.
Vary your standing positions
A repertoire of various positions can also help fight the fatigue associated to your standing position. Switching from one position to another. Using a footrail or footrest will greatly help, or use an activemat balance board. You can also change among standing, sitting, and walking while working. Neutral postures are better than leaning forward, reclining, or overreaching.
The height of your standing desk is also crucial to your position. The desk height should be appropriate to the type of work you do, whether it is precision, light, or heavy work. Your elbow height will help determine the proper desk height according to your work type. For most office workers, you will want your elbow at slightly greater than 90 degrees.
Being sensitive to your body is key to changing your positions. Whenever you feel a slight fatigue in any part of your body, change to another posture until you feel comfortable.
Use an anti-fatigue mat
Standing for a long period of time may constrict your leg muscles thereby reducing blood flow. The result is discomfort and fatigue. An anti-fatigue mat encourages delicate leg and calf movement ensuring continuous blood flow to the heart.
A study from the Center of Ergonomics revealed that anti-fatigue mats can reduce up to 50% of the fatigue level among workers. Using anti-fatigue mats can create a healthier, happier, and creative working atmosphere.
Choose proper shoes
Your footwear provides the foundation for your body’s wellbeing. Your shoes should have enough support and space for your feet to remove any work-related pain in your back, hips, and legs.
Workplace surveys indicate that two out of every three employees experience foot problems. The causes of these foot problems can be any of the following: high heels or pointed shoes, improper fitting shoes, having no arch support, synthetic shoes, and sweaty feet leading to fungal infections.
Proper footwear can take you into more comfortable working sessions. Shoes that provide a firm grip of your heel and those that have paddings can provide additional comfort. Shoes that allow you to move your toes are also better than shoes that are too narrow or too shallow.
Stretch throughout the day
Finally, stretching your body once in a while makes you more flexible and refreshed. Whenever you feel tightness in your lower back, your body is telling you to stretch! Give time to move away from your desk and stretch away from the stresses of your workloads.
To make stretching time more organized, you can set up an alarm to stretch every hour or after several minutes. During breaks or when you go the bathroom, stretch your body. Make it a habit and you’ll find that your body will be in-tuned with it.
You can stretch your way to a healthier you by following these simple stretching areas: stretch your neck, tuck your chin to your chest, stretch your shoulder, stretch your feet, stretch your back and chest, and stretch your forearm and hand.
Ensure a fatigue-free workday by doing these five great suggestions for the proper use of your standing desks.
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