Trends & News Work Spaces

Stand up desks: tried and tested

By Fiona Bugler • 11th September 2020

Working at stand-up desks helps to burn calories, improve your posture, and can also help to boost brain power at work.

A 2018 study revealed that using a stand-up desk and having the freedom to move around your workspace has been found to have cognitive benefits. The researchers at the Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience at University College London (UCL) followed 15 subjects and monitored their cognitive abilities after working at a standing desk. The first of its kind, the study was commissioned by Posturite, makers of the Oploft Sit-Stand Platform (posturite.co.uk/oploft), which is slim, lightweight and portable and ideal for our new working landscape, blending working from home with the office. Before cynics dismiss the study as marketing, it’s worth pointing out that UCLA’s Professor Vincent Walsh was reported at the time, in both The Times and The Telegraph, as saying he was surprised by the results and had no interest in getting them to fit the company’s brief. Other research has shown that standing is better for you physically – it burns more calories and it’s better for your posture – but this study was the first to look at the mental benefits. Findings included an improvement in brainpower and decision-making, with participants doubling their score in a standard cognitive test. There was also a 64 per cent improvement in performing language-based problems, and concentration and creativity, also tested, both improved. Find out more at posturite.co.uk.

Tried and tested

“I’ve been using the desk for two months working from home. Since doing the Ironman in 2018 my back has never been right and I was beginning to wonder whether I was paying a price for my running passion – maybe I had done too much running? If the last two months are anything to go by, the opposite is true and it seems the problem has been too much sitting. My back is no longer permanently painful and running feels more fluid. I’m also finding I get less of a 3 pm slump.” — Fiona Bugler, editorial director, i-wellbeing.

Footnote

This article first appeared in the launch issue of the zone print magazine.

Fiona Bugler

This article was written by our team of in-house writers. We're always interested to hear from wellbeing professionals and business leaders. If you'd like to write for the zone, follow this link.

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