Is Ergonomic Standing Desk Height Important?
While scientific studies have clearly demonstrated the health benefits of stand up desk in workplace, school, and home office, it only applies with proper configuration—i.e., the optimum desk height must be adjusted based on the user’s “anatomy.”
The most ideal ergonomic standing desk height is primarily determined by the user’s elbow level and resting eye level.
Most high-end standing desks available in the market today have motor lift to change their height and even allow for seated position at the simple push of a button. Meanwhile, their hand-operated versions can be a good alternative, especially if one is on a tight budget.
And of course, DIY enthusiasts can also create the optimum desk height, which is explained below. However, it requires some elbow grease and a lot of patience. (Note: One can find instructions on how to make standing desks on the Internet.)
With the proper keyboard height, it is much easier for the wrists to be in their neutral position—and that means not bending them toward the little finger or thumb, and not tilting them upward.
It is important to note that when the wrists are in their neutral position the tendons and sheaths are not exposed to additional strain when using the keyboard or mouse.
In terms of the ideal screen height, its top should be at the user’s resting eye level; hence, he is not forced to tilt his head up or down, ultimately reducing fatigue and discomfort during long hours of work. However, this “ideal” posture is not possible with the use of laptop.
While using an adjustable stand up desk height is better than prolonged sitting, it remains important to take regular breaks to move and stretch even for a few minutes. Most experts suggest that walking around every 30-60 minutes is enough to mitigate the ill effects of sedentary lifestyle.
For some people taking short breaks come naturally, while others need an automated reminder. There are “break reminder” apps, which can be installed on one’s phone or computer for free. According to one study involving call center employees, the group who used them reported less back pain and upper limb discomfort.
Aside from taking short walks, stretching or doing some simple yoga poses for at least two minutes for every 30-60 minutes of working on a computer has also been found to improve posture, metabolism, and blood circulation, and minimize the risk of muscle weakening and stress.