Changing Work Routine During COVID-19
Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, millions of people have been forced to work from home and many companies maybe transitioning to having more and more of their employees work remotely. During these changing times, our workplace and workday routine is evolving and maybe not for the better. The exercise of walking to and from work and even the small amounts of exercise from walking to a meeting or walking to talk to colleagues has been replace with Zoom calls and more sitting in a single desk. While working from home may have its benefits, sitting more isn’t one of them.
Health Effects of Too Much Sitting
A study shared by the Washington Post reported that in 2016 the average adult spends 6.5 hours sitting and for younger adults it was closer to 8 hours a day . For office workers though, they spend close to 15 hours a day sitting between work, commuting, and leisure . And with the ongoing pandemic, these averages are most certainly on the rise. Our current employment trends aren’t helping us either as physical active jobs now only make up less than 20% of the United States workforce and sedentary jobs have been on the rise . The Mayo Clinic reports those who sit for more than 8 hours a day without physical activity have a similar risk of dying as to obese individuals and smokers .
Prolong sitting has been tied to a whole host of health complications and not to mention early death. As you sit, you burn less calories, you lose muscle strength, and have worse blood circulation. These effects could lead to obesity, heart disease, and type 2 diabetes. Sitting too much can increase your risk of certain cancers and even lead to feelings of depression and anxiety . Prolong sitting has also been shown to increase your likelihood of early death  and decreasing your time sitting to less than 3 hours a day has been shown to increase life expectancy by 1 to 2 years .
Overcoming the Negative Effects of Sitting
To combat the negative effects of all that sitting, more and more studies are finding that 30 minutes of exercise a day isn’t enough. Data has suggested that 60-75 minutes of moderate to intensive physical exercise a day is required to fight off the effects of too much sitting . While an hour doesn’t sound like a lot, but in today’s busy world and with gyms either closed or under strict social distancing regulations, finding the time and place for an hour of exercise can be difficult. What we need is a healthier workplace along with workplace strategies to break up the prolong periods of sitting. Luckily doctors have some suggestions for a healthier work environment which include taking a break from sitting every 30 minutes, have walking meetings instead of sitting in a meeting room, and use a sit-stand desk .
Benefits of a Sit-Stand Desk
With more of us working from a home office, sit-stand desks might be the best way to break up the long periods of sitting while maintaining a high level of productivity. Firgelli Automation’s electric sit-stand desk lifts allow you to transition from a sitting desk to a standing desk in mere moments with a push of a button. This quick transition makes these sit-stand desks perfect for your home office and will help you reduce the amount of time you spend sitting and add years to your life. Along with decreasing the risk of obesity, heart disease, and high blood sugar levels; these sit-stand desks can also help reduce back and neck pain . If your concern with the lack of exercise your new work routine entails, you can pair your electric sit-stand desk with a treadmill which will allow you to walk whilst you work.
Reducing the time spent sitting has also been linked to higher productivity, less stress, and improved mood among workers. One study observed that “87% felt more comfortable, 87% felt energized, 75% felt healthier, 71% felt more focused, 66% felt more productive, 62% felt happier, and 33% felt less stressed as a result of having the sit-stand device installed at their workstations” . While another study at a call center found employees that used stand-capable desks were 45% more productive on a daily basis compared to their seated counterparts .
Sit-Stand Desk are Needed for a Healthier Home Office
The science is definitely clear, sitting too much is the new scourge on our health and the coronavirus isn’t making our situation any better. If you are working from home because of COVID-19 or you want to make your workstation, at home or at the office, better for your health, a sit-stand desk is the easiest way to do so. Firgelli Automation’s line of electric sit-stand desk lifts come in various types to best suit your needs and your workplace. Utilizing these sit-stand desk lifts is the simplest way to live longer, be more productive, and feel happier.
- Yang, L., Cao, C., Kantor, E. D., et al. Trends in Sedentary Behavior Among the US Population, 2001-2016. 2019; 321(16):1587-1597. doi:10.1001/jama.2019.3636.
- Leech, J. (2019, June). Is Sitting Too Much Bad for Your Health. Retrieved From:https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/why-sitting-is-bad-for-you
- Michos, E. D. Sitting Disease: How a Sedentary Lifestyle Affects Heart Health. Retrieved From: https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/wellness-and-prevention/sitting-disease-how-a-sedentary-lifestyle-affects-heart-health
- Laskowski, E. R. (2018, May) What are the risks of sitting too much? Retrieved From:https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/adult-health/expert-answers/sitting/faq-20058005
- MedlinePlus (2017 June). Health Risks of an Inactive Lifestyle. Retrieved From: https://medlineplus.gov/healthrisksofaninactivelifestyle.html
- Diaz, K. M., et al. Patterns of Sedentary Behavior and Mortality in U.S. Middle-Aged and Older Adults. Annals of Internal Medicine. 2017. doi:7326/M17-0212.
- Pronk, N. P., et al. Reducing Occupational Sitting Time and Improving Worker Health: The Take-a-Stand Project, 2011. Prev. Chronic Dis 2012; 9:110323. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.5888.pcd9.110323
- Garrett, G., et al. Call Center Productivity Over 6 Months Following a Standing Desk Intervention. IIE Transactions on Occupational Ergonomics and Human Factors. 2016; 4: 188-195. doi:https://doi.org/10.1080/21577323.2016.1183534