The Best Standing Desk || Oct 2019

(From BestReviews posted on the Chicago Tribune)

If you're stiff and slumped after a long day sitting in your office chair, you might benefit from a standing desk. However ergonomic your desk chair might be, it helps to stand up and move around throughout the day. That's exactly what working at a standing desk can do for you.

Today, standing desks are more within reach pricewise, which means there's no longer a barrier to a healthier work style. Our buying guide can help you decide what to look for in a standing desk and determine what will work best for your needs. We've included our favorites, such as the LifeSpan Fitness Treadmill Desk, which lets you work while you walk.

Considerations when choosing standing desks

Size

Freestanding standing desks come in various work surface lengths and widths to fit numerous spaces. If you don't have room for a freestanding piece of furniture, there are add-on risers to convert your existing desk into a standing desk, though adjustability is limited. Not including add-on risers, sizes of standing desks can range from a 21-inch long work surface for a laptop to 60-inch long work surfaces to fit dual monitors and more. For large spaces, there are even height-adjustable corner desks with 60-inch sides.

Ease of adjustability

There are static standing desks, but to maximize your comfort, consider an adjustable desk that goes from sit to stand or adjusts the standing height. There are three ways to adjust the height of a standing desk: a standing desk with electric adjustability is the easiest to use but it's priciest. A desk with a hand crank is also easy to use, assuming the mechanism works smoothly. The third way to adjust a standing desk is by removing bolts to raise or lower the surface, which is the least costly option but also requires patience and some physical effort.

Features

Treadmill

If you really want to step up your physical activity while working, opt for a treadmill desk. The best are designed so the work surface remains stable while you're in motion, though these models are at the top of the price range.

Mobility

Not every standing desk is mobile. If you prefer moving around your standing desk or you want to fit a smaller one in your office to augment your regular sitting desk, a model with casters may be a perfect option. That way, you can move the desk wherever it fits in your space. Look for lockable casters for a more stationary work surface.

Price

For under $100, you can buy a desk riser to convert your existing desk into a standing one. In this price range, you may also find small freestanding height-adjustable desks that hold laptops.

From $100 to $279, you find larger 40- to 48-inch long electric and crank-style freestanding height-adjustable desks that hold single or dual monitors. In this range, you may find a few non-adjustable standing desks as well.

From $289 to $1,500 and higher are more durable and adjustable 60- to 72-inch long desks manufactured for both home and commercial use. If you prefer a treadmill standing desk, you can buy treadmills that slip under a standing desk for $349 to $699. For $999 to $1,699, you can buy the entire kit with treadmill, treadmill-to-desk attachment, and height adjustable work surface.

FAQ

Q. Won't too much standing also cause health problems?

A. Some limited clinical studies show that prolonged standing can cause some general discomfort and a slight reduction in productivity. However, prolonged sitting is reported to cause even more health challenges than standing for too long. Take it all with a grain of salt and do what feels best for you. Since moderation is key, intervals of sitting and standing while at work may be your best — and healthiest — option.

Q. How do I know what height is best for my standing desk?

A. There's no one-size-fits-all height for a standing desk, but there are two ways to keep you comfortable. First, raise the shelf where you place your keyboard to the height of your elbow. Second, make sure you use your keyboard the right way while standing: bend your elbows at a 90° angle, make sure your forearms are parallel to the work surface, and keep your wrists straight out in front of you for the most neutral, non-stressful position. 

Continue Reading on the Chicago Tribune Website