Tag Archives: sit to stand

University of Chester pilot study utilizes Ergotron WorkFit Workstations

BBC_ChesterUThe pilot, “Cardiovascular and metabolic benefits of standing desk work”, conducting by researchers from the University of Chester, UK, was recently published in the BMJ Group’s (British Medical Journal) Occupational & Environmental Medicine Journal.

This Infographic highlights the results of a pilot study conducted by researchers as they evaluated changes in energy expenditure and metabolism among urban office workers when sitting versus standing throughout a work day.

According to researcher Dr. John Buckley, “Our study showed that when the participants were standing, their hearts rates were quite a lot higher – on average about 10 beats per minute higher and that makes a difference of about 0.7 of a calorie per minute. If you want to put that into activity levels then that would be the equivalent of running about 10 marathons a year – just by standing three or four hours in your day at work.” (Read the press release.)

The abstract on the BMJ concludes, “This is the first known ‘office-based’ study to provide CGM measures that add some of the needed mechanistic information to the existing evidence-base on why avoiding sedentary behaviour at work could lead to a reduced risk of cardiometabolic diseases.”

The results of the study (Ergotron WorkFit-D adjustable desks were deployed), were aired October 2013 in Episode 2 of the “Trust me I’m a Doctor” series on BBC Two Television in the UK.


WorkFit for Apple workstations now available on Apple.com

Apple Macbook Pro on Ergotron's WorkFit-P

Like the convenience of shopping for all your Mac® products on Apple.com? Now you can buy your Mac and mount it too! Visit the site and Shop Mac Accessories in the Stands, Mounts & Locks category.

You can also read what the top Mac publications think about the WorkFit-A and WorkFit-P for Apple products—find on the Product Detail pages on Apple.ergotron.com

Shop on! 





Custom sit-stand for the office – don’t fight design, join it

This is a familiar scenario we hear around the ‘Tron: I love the idea of my employees standing more, but we just integrated this new office design with custom worksurfaces…

It’s hard to argue with design at times. Especially when considering the tremendous number of hours spent on deliberating, designing and implementing these work environments to capture the spirit and the culture of the brand it is supporting.

If you can’t fight design, why not join it?

That’s the impetus behind the WorkFit-B Sit-Stand Base. Simply attach your custom worksurface to the WorkFit base of choice (light duty and heavy duty options available), and bingo-presto your employees have attractive, brand supporting sit-stand comfort.

Building the WFB Desk

Whoa. That’s an odd phrase. Brand supporting sit-stand comfort. But culture is important, right? Not only to attract top talent but to keep them healthy and productive while they are there. If you’ve taken the trouble to create a talent attracting environment, why not take the next step?

Sit-stand computing is more than a hot trend. (Although sure, I’d love this to be a “computer on every sit-stand desk” kind of revolution!)

Truthfully, a lot more people than I have discovered that standing more makes them feel better. Smarter people than I have the science to prove it. And now we can help you prove for yourself that your staff will feel (and look good) while standing more.

A few things to know about the WorkFit-B: 

  • Capacity LD: ≤ 60 lbs (27.2 kg);  HD: ≤ 88 lbs (40 kg)
  • Lift: LD: 19″ (50 cm); HD: 20″ (51 cm)
  • Integrated brake secures table in place, with easy release for instantaneous, tool-free, non-motorized re-positioning with Ergotron’s Constant Force (CF) motion technology
  • Assumes worksurface thickness of .87″ (2.2 cm)
  • Four leveling glides establish a firm footing and adjust to install the unit on uneven floors

One thing to keep in mind, the listed weight capacity represents total load applied to height-adjustment platform. So for best results, when calculating load include weight of worksurface, accessory mounts for keyboard and display(s), and any computer hardware being placed on worksurface (less of an issue with quilt squares or scrapbook pages for the home crafter!).

Ergonomic considerations: 

No matter how you choose to use it, don’t miss out on proper ergonomics when considering a custom sit-stand option like this. Here are a few ideas to keep it healthy and to keep it safe:

  • Use the Workspace Planner tool to help calculate the proper worksurface measurements for sitting and standing postures
  • Consider adjustable monitor or laptop arms to ensure proper screen to eye ratios, especially if the keyboard will be placed on the worksurface
  • Integrate an under-desk keyboard option like Ergotron’s Neo-Flex® Underdesk Keyboard Arm (97-582-009) if keying off the worksurface is less than ideal
  • Change postures frequently! Standing too long, just like sitting too long, can cause problems…the key is to find the right balance of sitting and standing for you

How creative do you want to be?

I’ve had some fun thinking of different surfaces to add to this base. I have a new craft room at home and plenty of spare parts squirreled away, like that old wooden door in the garage rafters, or a thick slice of plexi in the storage room. If you have any funky ideas, please send them along.

Sit-stand can go beyond the primary computing space, don’t forget:

  • Makeover the visitor table in your office to a sit-stand hot spot
  • Swap over some of the tables in the cafeteria for the stand-and-graze types on your team
  • Shake things up in your conference or training rooms with sit-stand options for happier, and healthier sessions

This product lets you keep style and function as a work team, instead of opponents. In fact, a true marriage of interior design and sit-stand is possible, when sit-stand is included in the project scope early on and the designer is tasked with making it crazy-cool. A brand feast if you will, for the body and senses. An ultimate win-win for everyone involved.

Go now, get creative.

Michelle Judd
Sr. Marketing Manager, Global Communications


Own your space, own your life

UoChesterStudyHow big is your office? Is it a tiny cubical or a part of an open plan benching system? Do you have a dedicated desk or plop into any available chair? Are you working from the comfort of home or are you alone in a corner office with a million-dollar view?

Whatever your office size or configuration, the area within your control is actually quite small.  Full-time workers spend forty percent of their waking hours sitting within a space no larger than their own height. For the average person, if they spread their arms out to their side at shoulder height, that measurement would be about five and a half feet in diameter from fingertip to fingertip (nails not included).

If those numbers seem bleak, don’t despair. There is a way to make the most of every inch and every minute while you are at work. Just stand–with a sit-stand workstation.

Sure, the media has been full of reports about standing desks, sedentary behavior, and how regular exercise alone isn’t enough to keep us healthy; but a lot of people, employees and employers alike, seem to be missing the point. Not because they’re immune to the health risks of prolonged siting, but because they are reacting to assumptions that side-track them from the truth that they have become accustomed to an unnatural way of working and indeed, living.

Some comment that standing at a desk is nothing new; some bristle at having “one more thing to worry about,” while others delight in pointing out that standing too long is just as bad as sitting too long.

Well, yes.

But what’s that got to do with you?

Given everything that you know about how it feels to be stuck at a computer for hours on end, why wouldn’t you consider standing? Especially in light of an episode called “Trust Me, I’m a Doctor” which aired last Thursday, October 17 on BBC Two television in the UK. The study, conducted by Dr. John Buckley at the University of Chester was built upon previous findings indicating that:

  1. Prolonged sitting causes damage to joints which can lead to inflammation, stress and chronic pain
  2. Prolonged sitting can lead to cardio-metabolic disease
  3. Sit-stand computer workstations have been proven by scientific research to be both feasible and effective at reducing sitting time in a work setting.

The BBC/University of Chester researchers found that both heart rate and energy expenditure were raised significantly by standing work. They speculate that over the course of a year’s work, if workers stood for three to four hours per day doing desk work, it would equate to an additional energy expenditure of 25,000 kcal (about 7lbs or 3 kg of human fat)!

Subjective evaluations found that 8 of 10 workers were very willing to stand doing work as long as they could have breaks and do some work sitting.

No least of all, the UK researchers stated that the simple act of performing desk work, while standing for greater than three hours after lunch, helps to lower blood glucose more quickly back down to normal levels.

The research is in…standing at the computer is both feasible healthier than sitting on its own. And the ability to modify your work surface height, depending on how you feel and the type of task you are doing gives you “decision latitude,” which in itself, is known to improve attitude and consequently, productivity.

Your office may be large or small, near to home or far away. With a sit-stand workstation, it doesn’t matter because you’re in charge. Own your work space. Own your life!

CarrieSchmitzCarrie Schmitz
Ergonomics & Wellness Research Manager @ Ergotron




Additional reading:

The WorkFit-D vs. an electric desk

Who doesn’t like a little healthy competition? We paired our WorkFit-D, sit-stand desk in the ring against an electric height-adjustable desk. Waiting for your desk isn’t pretty. Take a look.

Is there a clear winner? You tell us.

Doctors Say Sitting At Work All Day is Unhealthy and Obesity is a Disease

Good news is worth sharing! On Tuesday, the American Medical Association (@AmerMedicalAssn) adopted a new policy regarding sitting at work and how it affects employee health. As reported by the Los Angeles Times, “AMA to offices: Don’t make workers sit all day!“, the article cites mounting evidence that sitting for extended periods of time is really bad for you.

ABC News, covering the news, reports other resolutions from the conference including “AMA Declares Obesity a Disease.” By changing obesity’s status from “a major public health problem” to a chronic disease, Dr. Patrice Harris, a member of the AMA’s board of trustees, said that the organization hoped to open up the range of medical interventions that could help the one-third of Americans now considered obese.

Physicians are now urging employers to offer alternatives to sitting, such as standing work stations, isometric balls, treadmills and more to encourage healthier movement throughout the workday.

This movement allows for postural rotation, which reduces sedentary time in the work day, and has a host of associated health and productivity benefits for employees, as research is finding.

Said Dr. Harris, “Prolonged sitting, particularly in work settings, can cause health problems, and encouraging work places to offer employees alternatives to sitting all day will help to create a healthier workforce.”

“This news validates the huge volume of research that has emerged in the last five years regarding the devastating health effects of sitting,” said Pete Segar, Ergotron CEO. “While people are starting to understand the link between extended sitting and obesity and cardiovascular health, research has also shown links to diabetes and several types of cancer.”

Ergotron has been tracking this research closely, capturing it together for public reference at Research.juststand.org and communicating it via @juststandnews and @ergotron on Twitter.  

“At Ergotron, we see the ‘Sitting Disease’ as a global crisis,” said Segar. “We have provided sit-to-stand computer workstations for all our employees.  We are committed to providing sit-to-stand workstations with fluid height adjustment, and to making them affordable enough to be accessible to all the world’s computer users. Our most recent sit-stand workstation, the WorkFit-P, sells for only $259!” 

It is also timely news when considering Ergotron’s 3rd Annual JustStand™ Wellness Summit this summer in Minneapolis, July 17. Learn more about the researchers and companies who are making the news at Juststand.org/summit.

Ergocising, a modern fairytale? Come celebrate National Ergonomics Month with us!

Reduce sendentary time with ergonomic interventionsThis year, the ergo-geeks here at Ergotron have a new “once upon a time” tale to share to help you celebrate National Ergonomics Month.

Sure ergonomic chairs and equipment play their part in this story, but that’s not what this tale is ALL about. It’s also about tackling the beast that is sedentary behavior, and encouraging the angel that is ergonomic intervention.

In other words, it’s about getting up out of that chair, scary as that sounds, and interacting with the world around you in a brand new, but yes, more ergonomic way.

How can you get involved? Here’s a start:

  • Follow along with us and participate on Facebook.com/ergotroninc
  • Join us on Twitter to share tips or participate on #ergochat at 1 PM CST on 10/24
  • Sign up for the Blogs.ergotron.com RSS feed to catch updates throughout the month
  • We even have our very own @heatherrou tweeting live from the HFES conference in Boston, the week of October 22nd (follow the event on Twitter  #HFES2012) 

Who knows what friendships can emerge in the dark winding path through the forest? Come explore with us…

The Management Challenge Presented by the “Sitting Disease”

by Pete Segar, President, Ergotron Branded Products 

A challenge every manager should consider: The  responsibility to deliver a safe working environment to our employees. 

Up until recently, the standard approach has been to provide computer equipment, and later upgrade with custom ergonomic devices as employees develop problems. Often times, even requiring a doctor’s note to justify the expense. 

But today, with strong evidence that the computing environment itself leads to extended sedentary periods that are damaging to employee health, it is no longer responsible to provide static seated office computing stations to our employees. 

It is our responsibility to provide a safe working environment to all of our workers, and the ability to move fluidly from sitting to standing to help prevent the health impact of overly sedentary behavior during the work day.  The question is no longer whether we need to provide sit to stand workstations, but simply HOW to quickly to deliver them.

Ergotron’s new online WorkFit Finder Tool helps make this decision easy for prospective users looking  to upgrade their computing workstation to sit-stand.

Has your company accepted the challenge?


Guest Blog: Designing the Sit-To-Stand Office

Daisy McCarty is the long-time office furniture blogger for San Diego based Cubicles Office Environments. She regularly covers topics ranging from office furniture news, design, and products, to refurbishing and sustainability in her blog. We are happy to have her connect with you on this topic.

There’s no shortage of sound medical research pointing to the health risks of prolonged sitting. You don’t have to look in a 3600 mirror to know that being an “office chair potato” can wreak havoc on the human body. Sit-to-stand workstations are the clear choice for a more ergonomic work experience. They should be the first option employers, designers, and facility managers consider rather than a novelty item that only a privileged few get to experience.

However, adjustable height worksurfaces add a new, vertical dimension to office design planning. They introduce a whole new array of questions about how to create a truly effective work environment. This doesn’t mean you should view sit-to-stand desks and worktables as obstacles in the office landscape. Instead, it’s time to spark off some discussion about how to integrate these modern work surfaces into the average open office plan. Let’s get started!

Can I Get Some Privacy Here?

Many top-of-the-line cubicles allow some customization of the worksurface height based on employee height. However, that’s a set it and forget it feature. Truly adjustable worksurfaces that are attached to a cubicle panel are few and far between. Many of the best sit-to-stand worktables and desks are designed to be freestanding. They aren’t meant to serve as a support structure for a panel. This doesn’t mean that cubicle panels can’t be incorporated into the office layout. Panel wall heights may actually need to increase to provide consistent acoustic shielding and reduce interruptions for workers whether they are sitting or standing.

However, panels may no longer be directly linked to the worksurface. Instead, you might start seeing more standalone panels with wide bases for stability. Or, panels with brackets attached to walls could make a comeback. With today’s blended office environments that feature both collaborative and private workspaces, this layout might be very beneficial. The individual workstations could line the perimeter of the office by the coveted window spots where employees can enjoy plenty of natural light. The central area of the room could be reserved for lounge style furnishings and “pods” for group work.

Where Should You Stow Stuff?

To date, most studies of repetitive motion injuries in cubicle workers assume that all movements are done from a seated position. This includes bending, twisting, and reaching to retrieve objects and files. When employees start standing at work, this is all going to change. They will have more mobility and a greater reach. It won’t seem like a huge chore for workers to heave themselves out of an office chair and walk across the room to a filing cabinet – they’ll already be standing up. At the same time, bending over from a standing position or squatting down to reach files in the very bottom drawer of a credenza may not be very comfortable.

Some storage options, such as overhead bins placed directly above the main worksurface may no longer be useful. In contrast, mobile storage pedestals may be a very popular addition (and they can be readily shared between two or more workers). Spine based storage solutions that place file drawers at about waist level could also address the new, variable height of work positions.

Put on Your Thinking Cap…

These are only a few factors to consider in designing a workspace that incorporates sit-to-stand desks and tables. You will also need to brainstorm about these topics:

  • Streamlined cord management
  • Adjustable monitor arms, keyboard trays and task lighting
  • Where to put peripherals such as printers
  • Whether employees need more or less square footage in your new layout
  • If bridges and returns are still needed to provide adequate surface area, or if they can be replaced with other office furniture that isn’t attached to the main worksurface.
  • Anti-fatigue flooring that still allows desk chairs to roll freely

There are no limits to the heights we can reach as we re-imagine the modern workplace! Share your ideas in the comments.

5 steps to a killer sit-stand desk

Michelle Judd, Sr. Marketing Manager @ Ergotron

I got a call one night from a reporter asking, “How do you go about choosing a sit-stand desk? Is there a science to it?” It got me thinking. What is involved with choosing the right setup?

Here is my take. See if you agree. 
Continue reading