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 from the Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience at University College London (UCL) followed 15 subjects working at sand up desks 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 (, which is slim, lightweight and portable stand up desk 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 to promote stand up desks.

New findings: benefits of stand up desks

Other research has claimed 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

Tried and tested

“I’ve been using the Oploft stand up desk for two months working from home. Since doing the Ironman in 2018 my back has been an issue, and I was beginning to wonder whether I was paying a price for my long-distance running passion.  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.

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

Fiona Bugler

Fiona is the creator of all things editorial, she’s a journalist with a life-long passion for health, fitness and wellbeing. For more than a decade she worked with business leaders and large groups as a personal trainer and running coach and this background informs the content she creates.

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