In case you haven’t heard or experienced it yourself, being sedentary for too long is extremely hard on the human body. Our bodies aren’t designed for sitting for extended periods, but sitting eight hours a day or more at work is often unavoidable. However, it’s the extra time spent sitting after the first eight hours that is particularly damaging, according to experts. And, that’s even after figuring in exercise, too.
In a nutshell, that Netflix binge after work and on the weekends isn’t doing our health any favors. To lessen health risks, the sit-stand desk and stand-up workstation were designed to divide and conquer the workday. Through them, you no longer have to sit all day while performing your tasks.
The Invention of the Stand-Up Desk
We owe the standup workstation design to the Australian inventor, Max Allen Banfield, who officially invented the first working model in 1998. Banfield said the idea came to him after he suffered a variety of illnesses from hunching over a desk all day at work. The inventor said that the pressure the desk was applying to his abdomen was giving him GI and kidney issues. He added that the same compression the workstation gave to his chest was causing problems with his breathing and giving him chest pains and fatigue.
Banfield experimented eighteen years with desk designs that would make his symptoms disappear. Much of his research involved adding platforms to the top of his workstation, allowing him to stand while he worked. After a while, Banfield engineered what is now known as the stand-up workstation. When he went to market his idea, universities told him that it would never work, and furniture companies would never buy it. He persisted, and companies finally bought into the concept. Today, standing desks and their accessories are a booming industry with an annual market value of over $6.5 billion and increasing.
Disadvantages of the Stand-Up Desk
When it comes to stand-up desks, there are several disadvantages. The cost of them can be off-putting, and you can expect to shell out anywhere from as little as $20 to as much as $1500 and up for the high end and adjustable electric models. Another factor to consider before buying one is that standing for at least eight hours a day has its disadvantages. Studies show that standing in the same spot for over 30 minutes can cause back pain, reduce circulation, and increase the risk of cardiovascular disease. Working at a standup desk means that you are still inactive and prone to similar health risks seen in workers that sit for the same amount of time.
You can get around the risks by having both a stand-up workstation and a sit-down workstation and alternating between the two. Unfortunately, the cost is prohibitive for doing so. This is especially true for companies that would need to purchase them in bulk since buying double the amount of workstations increases the cost substantially. If only you could get a standup workstation that you could adjust manually, pneumatically or automatically to different heights; one that also allowed you to sit and stand at intervals you picked during the workday. With thinking such as this, the idea for the sit-stand desk was born.
Consider a Sit-Stand Desk Instead
A sit-stand desk allows you to adjust the height from sitting to standing positions and vice versa. Sit-stand desks can differ in the method of how they are raised and in how their frame is designed structurally. A robust model should allow you to do this effortlessly, having a smooth range of motion that allows for computers, monitors and accessories to be lowered and raised without any disruption. Here are the categories of adjustable height benches to consider:
- Hand-Crank – Workstations designed for standing are static, but an adjustable stand-up desk with a hand-crank has a range of motion that you can adjust for sitting or standing. You merely turn the crank manually to raise and lower the workstation to your preference.
- Pneumatic – This type of sit-stand desk uses a pneumatic air cylinder to raise and lower the workstation height. Levers usually activate the movement.
- Gas – Lightweight, adjustable desk risers and converters fall under this category. They are usually placed on top of a regular workstation and the computer, monitor and keyboard are placed on top of the riser’s workstation surface. The riser is the only part that is lifted instead of the whole workstation.
- Electric – Sit-stand desks that are powered by electricity are the crème de la crème of this category. An excellent one is usually more expensive than most, but when you purchase one, it’s often better performing and of higher quality than other types. Take a Herman Miller Desk, for example. Renew is a Herman Miller desk that is well-engineered and has a classic style and feel. Its lift motors are much quieter and stronger than other electric powered sit- stand desks. Additionally, it has a 12-year warranty, perfect for organizations since they need equipment to last as long as possible.
Why Buy a Used Sit-Stand Desk?
So, why go the used route? In short, buying used equipment is an affordable option. In fact, you have plenty of choices for purchasing something like that for a family member or yourself on Amazon, eBay, Alibaba, Overstock and other similar places. You also know that when things go wrong, what a hassle it is to return something and get your money back.
The categories of sit-down desks listed here are just the tip of the iceberg, and the volume of choices for sit-stand desks can be overwhelming. When it comes to organizations and their purchasing process, nothing should be left to chance, though. You can benefit from the help of professionals, especially if you are buying technical furniture on a large scale.
Saraval Industries in West Nyack, NY, is a premier “Technical Furniture” dealer. The professionals at Saraval provide excellence in technical furniture and custom workstation solutions across various industries. We offer our clients multiple vendor options, including new and used sit-down desks. We will carefully analyze and consider lead times, project scope and associated budget before offering you the best vendor and their recommendations.
Contact us today for a consultation or quote on used, new or custom technical furniture.