Procuring for a sit-stand-move workplace
Sit, stand or move around? All the latest evidence seems to lead to the conclusion that, for the sake of our health, we need to mix all three at work.
The idea that we need to stand up, rather than sit at our desks all day, has been a topic of discussion for some years, and this may be starting to filter through into offices and affecting the kind of furniture and workplace accessories we’re using. However, there are an increasing number of signs telling us to think beyond this and mix things up, if we want to ensure better workplace health and productivity.
We can’t sit all day
The phrase ‘sitting is the new smoking’ was coined by Dr James Levine , inventor of the treadmill desk. He claimed that we lose two hours of life for every hour of sitting, which can lead to a range of health issues, including obesity. There’s compelling evidence that, irrespective of your physical activity, too much sitting leads to an increased risk of heart disease, diabetes, cancer and depression.
Other experts say that breaks from sitting are good for our physical health. Standing is said to increase calorific expenditure by about 30% compared to sitting, while altering posture, standing up and stretching has been shown to reduce musculoskeletal discomfort, reduce fatigue and stiffness and increase blood flow.
But all day standing isn’t the answer
Equally, too much standing can be unwise, with the impact of standing up all day on retail and hospitality workers, among others, found to create health issues.
More recently, a 12 year study of 7,320 people, working 15 hours a week or more, in occupations involving predominantly standing, found these workers had nearly two times the risk of heart disease compared to occupations involving predominantly sitting.
We need to move
After one hour of sitting, our fat-burning enzymes slow down by 90%. We may think that going for a run or fitting in a gym session after work may help, but research seems to show that we need to be active throughout the day and that short bursts of activity throughout the day can be just as beneficial as one bigger workout.
Researchers say some standing movement every 30 minutes is essential and, for every half an hour that we sit, we should do five minutes of more vigorous cardiovascular exercise, like walking briskly. We are also all advised to do two and a half hours of moderate-intensity aerobic activity every week, and strength training twice a week.
Practical and cultural change
For the procurement team, good furniture and accessories are one part of helping an organisation reduce the number of lost working days and improving productivity. But for management it’s also a question of culture. Rather than viewing anyone who regularly gets up from their desk as being less productive, the workplace needs to actively embrace sit-stand-move behaviour for better employee wellbeing and productivity. As this CNN article states, employers should create an office culture where getting up and walking around is promoted.
Ergonomic workplace solutions
The right ergonomic products will help employees to work comfortably and safely, whether they are sitting or standing, support a healthier workplace and proactively help to reduce the risk of developing workstation related pain or injuries.
Sit stand workstations
A sit-stand workstation allows you to adjust your working height to suit your current task. The height can be adjusted by simply using the convenient handle and this workstation clamps securely to your desk, which helps to free up your workplace.
Anti fatigue floor mat
An ideal way to help support a more active working style, an anti-fatigue floor mat is designed to reduce pressure and strain on the spine and the back muscles from periods of prolonged standing.
Premium adjustable back support
Back support is designed to provide adaptable and comfortable support for the spine.
A foot rest keep legs elevated for improved posture and circulation while working at a desk, which helps reduce pressure on your lower back.
Mouse wrist rest
A mouse mat wrist rest is ideal for providing enhanced comfort while working at a desk, and for reducing the impact of repetitive movements on the wrist.
Keyboard wrist rest
A keyboard rest helps to relieve the aches and strains associated with extended computer use. It can support pressure points so alleviate and reduce strain to the wrist and surrounding area.
Laptop stands lift notebooks and laptops to increase airflow and reduce heat build up for reliable operation. They are height and tilt adjustable for versatile use, helping to prevent neck and eye strain, with a non-slip base for stability on a desk or workstation
Monitor stands provide an elevated platform for laptops, notebooks and monitors. They raise a monitor to eye level to create an ergonomic viewing angle and reduce stress on the back and neck, even over extended periods of working.