For many, sitting in front of a computer or behind a desk is just a fact of life. That fact has become more prevalent in recent months, as coronavirus has a large portion of the workforce completing their duties from home. Whether you're new to remote work or are a seasoned pro, there is a downside to this freedom and productivity.
Sitting can be hazardous to your health. Studies have found that sitting for a large portion of the day increases your risk of early death compared to those who are on their feet. While you're home from the office, now is the perfect time to make the transition to a standing desk. If you don't have the funds to purchase one, you've got plenty of DIY options. Here are a few ideas to get you started.
Customize Your Existing Desk
Even if you're new to remote work, the chances are high that you've already carved out your own niche, creating a home-office space from whatever you have available. Maybe it's a desk in the corner of the living room. Perhaps it's a space on your kitchen table. Wherever you're working, you've got all sorts of options to help you turn it into a standing desk.
This process can be as simple as setting a stack of milk crates on your kitchen table, or as complicated as lifting your desk and placing it on a coffee table or other low piece of furniture. The goal here is to get your desk and your related peripherals up to a point where you can use them comfortably without having to hunch or reach down.
Whatever you choose, make sure it's stable and isn't going to wobble or fall over. Dropping your laptop on the floor because your standing desk isn't stable is going to end up costing you a lot of money.
Build Your Own Add-On
If stacking a bunch of milk crates doesn't appeal to you, we're going to head into DIY territory. Don't worry — you don't have to toss out your desk or kitchen table just yet. These ideas are for add-ons to set on top of your existing workspace. All you need is a flat and stable space that won't dump your equipment on the floor.
The exact dimensions and details of your standing desk converter will depend on the size of your space, your height and whether you're going to be standing full time or alternating between standing and sitting. Either way, you can put together a basic standing desk converter with a little bit of spare lumber, a couple of hand tools — including a couple of hand saws with sharp teeth to cut everything to size — and some screws to connect everything.
Consider the Perfect Height
If you're ready to make the full transition from sitting to standing, but don't want to spend an entire paycheck on a standing desk, you've got plenty of DIY options. The trick when you're building a standing desk is to make it adjustable or ensure that you've got it set to the right height before you start attaching pieces permanently. The easiest way to do that is to look at your elbows.
For most people, elbow height is the ideal height for a standing desk. That means you're standing upright with good posture, and you bend your elbows like you would to put your hands comfortably on a keyboard. Measure from the tip of your elbow the floor, and that is the ideal height for your standing desk.
Get Healthy With a Standing Desk
Whether you're looking to get a little healthier or want to stop sitting so much while you're working from home, a standing desk can be a great option. Pre-made ones can be a bit expensive. However, if you're handy and have a few tools lying around, you can make something that will get your butt out of that chair.
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