After learning the harmful effects of a sedentary work environment in “Don’t Just Sit There” and reading about how to “Find a Healthier Desk,” the next topic to cover regarding sit-to-stand is how to convert your office. Maybe you’ve had a few requests for height adjustable desks from your employees that have heard about the dangers of sitting all day, but what about the rest? If you’re planning to revamp your office space with height adjustable desks, you will want to give your employees the best chance of actually taking advantage of them.
Your first obstacle may be combating the doubt surrounding a sit-to-stand work environment. In the article, 5 Common Objections to Sit-To-Stand Working, And How To Overcome Them, you can read about the concerns people might have about using a sit-to-stand desk and how to dispute them.
When ordering your new office furniture, make sure to consider all users. You’ll need to consider what tasks are completed at these workstations, what type of environment surrounds this space, and be sure to choose an option that can be fully adjusted for all of the user’s requirements. Consider the desk’s adjustment mechanisms as well because you’ll want your employees to feel comfortable adjusting the desk and moving around as needed. You can also look in to getting foot rests and/or soft mats to stand on throughout the day.
Next, make sure to train employees on the new furniture. This will introduce them to the furniture, and help them get comfortable with their new work space.
Make sure you also explain the best posture to use while standing and encourage breaks. Each employee should avoid locking the knees, have their arms at a 90-degree angle at the elbows, keep their shoulders relaxed, and make sure that the computer monitor is at a height so that their eyes meet the top third section of the screen and their head is level with their shoulders.
Last, you’ll have to make standing a habit, and you can help make it a habit for those around you too. If it helps, you can do the 28 Day Stand Up and Work Challenge to transition gradually. Start the first day by standing for just 12 minutes, and progressively stand for a longer period of time each day. After the first week, you’ll work up to standing for an hour, and at the end of the 28 days you’ll be standing for half a day. If you simply start your own routine of switching from standing to sitting throughout the day, other employees will most likely follow your lead. Some people might feel uncomfortable standing on their own so they may work in pairs. Some of your employees may also decline the option to stand at all, but at least the option is there if they ever do decide to try it.