Working at a standing desk has many benefits, especially when compared to sitting at a desk all day. Our bodies are not meant to be tucked at 90 degree angles in chairs for 8+ hours a day. Compared to sitting, working at a standing desk engages your muscles and gets your blood flowing.
Standing is a great alternative to sitting, yet our bodies still crave movement. We do not necessarily need to be running around doing sprints to satisfy our natural instinct for movement. We benefit from simple contractions of the muscles. For example, when flying it is recommended that you point and flex your feet. This small movement keeps the blood flowing and can prevent blood clots.
When you stand still at an adjustable-height desk for long stretches of time, your legs and feet may feel tired. Doing toe raises or tapping your feet back and forth may help to reduce those feelings, but if you don’t want to look like you’re dancing at your desk, try an anti-fatigue mat!
Anti-fatigue mats are rectangular-shaped mats made of soft, often squishy material. When you stand on an anti-fatigue mat, you introduce subtle movement into your body. The muscles in your feet, calves, and legs are engaged because they have to adjust to the flexibility of the standing mat. Compared to standing on a hard floor, your muscles now need to expand and contract slightly. Again, this movement is subtle but it is enough! It increases blood flow, reduces pressure on the bottom of your feet, and alleviates feelings of fatigue.
Research has shown the positive effects of anti-fatigue standing mats. The University of Michigan Center of Ergonomics examined different employees at an industrial plant who normally stand for their entire shift. Workers who stood on concrete floors for the entire shift suffered from fatigue and discomfort in their legs and backs. Those who stood on anti-fatigue mats, however, saw a 50% reduction in fatigue and discomfort.
We want to help make your active working experience as positive as possible so we recently added a standing mat to our online store. You can check it out here!