About two years ago I decided to stand up for myself and lose the office chair. In the past, I had some back problems and my back tends to be weak. So I asked myself when is my posture at its worst? The answer is when I sit for hours developing software. I know I should take several breaks, look away from the screen, walk around and stretch. But honestly, did you ever see a developer do that consistently? Not me. We tend, or at least, I tend to get so focused on my tasks that I forget about these great habits.
To fix the bad posture problem, I simply stand when I’m at my desk which is most of the day. This is not a new concept, if you Google it you’ll find plenty of people doing the same thing; I had done some research before transforming my office space. See below for ergonomic tips and other resources.
The first two weeks were the hardest. My feet hurt, my legs and my back were tired. Plus, every day from 11am to 1-2pm I would get the urge to sit down, but I remained standing. And now it feels natural to be standing up for work. In fact 1 month after the change, it started to feel unnatural to sit at work :-). If you think about it many jobs require employees to stand up, such as waitresses/waiters, teachers, construction workers, store clerks, to name a few.
Also by standing up, it becomes much easier to incorporate the good habits I mentioned earlier. So my back is stronger, my productivity has increased and overall it keeps me more active!
What about you? Does your back cause you problems or do you simply need to refresh your daily habits? Maybe it’s time for you to stand up for yourself!
- Your arms should be positioned at 90 degrees when typing. Your forearm should be parallel to the floor.
- The computer screen should be eye-level. Looking straight ahead, your eyes should be looking at the top third of the screen.
- Your computer monitor should be at about an arm’s length away or further.
If you experience pain or discomfort, please consult a professional.
- Stand Up While You Read This – Article from the New York Times
- Benefits and drawbacks of a standing desk – Very good article giving practical tips and excellent reasons to stand up at work
- Study: The longer you sit, the shorter your life