Many are calling sitting the new smoking. This is because the effects of sitting for long stretches of the day and the sedentary lifestyle that develops can have serious negative consequences. Fortunately, the solution is remarkably simple: stand instead of sit.
Standing desks are now a common feature in many offices and an increasing share of workers are opting to stand for a portion of the day. The habit has taken off so quickly not only because it is very easy to start but also because of the many health benefits to standing all day at work.
One of the most immediate effects is you will burn more calories. The average person burns around fifty calories every hour they spend standing. That means over the course of an average work day, an individual could burn up to 400 calories. With diabetes and obesity among the most alarming current health trends, incorporating more standing into daily routines could do a lot to reduce these developments.
There are also physiological advantages to standing. Our early ancestors did not spend nearly the amount of time seated as modern humans do. Furthermore, they wouldn’t have done so in the awkward positions we find ourselves in today. Because our bodies developed before humans were so sedentary, remaining seated for long stretches of the day can cause back, hip and knock problems, among others.
Another important benefit is increased energy levels. Workers who spend at least an hour a day standing as opposed to sitting report higher energy at work and feeling more productive. These benefits are reported for individuals who spend even shorter amounts of time standing and they multiply the more time you spend outside of the chair.
Along with the physical benefits to standing there are also reported physiological improvements. Among them are increased attention span. More and more adult workers as well as kids are reporting symptoms of ADD and ADHD. Standing for a portion of the day is a great way to get activity, reduce energy, and improve focus.
Don’t Make it Hard on Yourself
If you’re just starting to stand at the office, it is usually helpful to take it slow. Don’t immediately start with long stretches of time, instead break it up into amounts that are more manageable. Even five or ten minutes with a break in between can have many of the benefits already discussed in addition to putting you on a path to developing healthier habits.
Don’t Forget About Comfort
One of the reasons it is important to take it slow is not to develop bad habits. Fatigue can cause slouching, which is often just as bad if not worse for an individual than sitting.
In addition to fatigue, another way to develop bad habits is by trying to stand without being comfortable in your shoes. Crocs are incredibly popular because they are some of the best shoes for standing all day at work. Before starting to stand more while at work, many individuals will simply leave a pair of crocs at their desk to change into when they start the day. There are also many models that are designed to look more appropriate for more formal offices.
Anyone looking for a comfortable pair of shoes that will look the part for any occasion should look into Aldo, Steve Madden, New Balance, and Dr. Martens. These brands produce a number of types of shoes that are stylish or formal enough to wear to the office while also being comfortable enough to keep on all day without killing your feet. In addition to making the best shoes for standing all day, these brands are also affordable enough for any budget.