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Standing desksPrint

Ideal: standing and sitting in the office!

The human body demands movement. Sitting all the time makes you ill, even in the most perfectly adapted chair. So standing's better than sitting? But standing for a long time also causes problems.

As in so many things, the solution lies in between. In this case, between sitting, standing and moving for dynamic office work, activating and stimulating mind and body.

Standing and sitting put different strains on the body. Sitting puts almost twice as much pressure on the intervertebral discs than standing uprights.

This is why we should always get up from the desk now and then to relieve the strain on the spiral column. Alternating between sitting and standing trains the back and leg muscles, improves respiration, stimulates the cardiovascular system as well as the digestion and the vegetative system. When we stand, we are more alert, more concentrated and react more quickly. The brain works 5 to 20% better when we're standing than when we're sitting down.

Encouraging frequent changes in posture

The best way to integrate this necessary standing/sitting dynamic in the office is with a standing desk. Here we differentiate between freestanding, mobile versions and those retrofitted to a table.

The standing desk workplace must be designed to encourage frequent changes in posture, e.g. by putting the phone there.

Simple height adjustment

It must be easy to adjust the standing desk to the user's height so that different people can work here with an upright posture in any position. When it is quick and easy to adjust the height of the standing desk (without tools!), it will be put to a wide range of different uses. The most important thing with the standing desk is the correct height of the front edge. There should be a gap about two fingers wide between your elbows and the front edge of the desk top when you hold your clenched fist under your chin (standing upright).

Characteristics of the desk top

It must also be possible to turn the position of the working surface flexibly through 360° around its own axis, thus allowing for back-friendly positioning of the desk top in every situation. In other words, the working surface must always be adjusted so that the user can stand and work directly in front of the desk/top. It must also be large enough - at least DIN A3.

The standing desk top must have a tilting mechanism (easy to use!): a generous tilting range for the desk top reduces the need to tilt the head forwards when writing or reading. This helps to reduce muscular tension.

Foot rest

Ideally there should be an integrated foot rest (simply arranged in the right position for retrofitted solutions). The foot rest helps to relieve the legs and prevent the pelvis from tipping backwards, which would cause a round back. The feet should be placed alternately on the foot rest with bent knees (so-called "bar effect").

The standing desk must be stable. It must be easy to brake the castors (in mobile standing desks) to prevent the desk from rolling away.

Retrofitting standing desk

When integrating a retrofitted standing desk in the workplace, it makes sense for the fastening to be independent of the actual furniture. The standing desk must be installed wherever it makes most sense for the specific individual work processes. This can change with different uses. The standing desk must also be stable enough, i.e. it must be possible for the user to lean against the desk.


As an equation for ideal office work, occupational health specialists recommend: maximum 50% sitting, approx. 25% standing and approx. 25% moving.


Companies offering the best, top-quality workplaces will survive in the face of global competition because they will have the best, most motivated and most innovative staff.

Balance sheets meanwhile provide clear evidence of the connection between workplace quality and competitiveness. Life in the office needs to keep moving: this fosters mental productivity and is the only way to facilitate mental performance in the long term.


  • Some people are taller than others, so a large range of fully variable height adjustment is necessary. Quick and easy adjustment possibilities allow for swift adaptation to the specific activity and user.
  • Adequately dimensioned work surface, at least DIN A3. Possible option of different desk tops (shapes).
  • Flexible desk top that rotates around its own axis.
  • Desk top easy to tilt between 0 and about 70° with just one hand. Special device to prevent items from sliding off the desk top when set at a tilt (e.g. for reading).
  • Contrast arms, non-reflective desk top
  • Stable position
  • Castors with brakes (for mobile standing desk)
  • Integrated foot rest for mobile standing desk (or foot rest that can be simply arranged in the right position for standing desks retrofitted to the table) to relieve the legs when standing

Minimum requirements

  • Simple height adjustment
  • Fastening independent of the actual furniture (for retrofitted standing desk)
  • Desk top with adequate size (at least DIN A3)
  • Desk surface rotating flexibly (360°) around its own axis - only for table-top standing desks
  • Desk top with adjustable tilting angle
  • Stable position
  • Foot rest
  • Items must be prevented from sliding off
  • Contrast arms, non-reflective desk surface

Also appropriate

  • Accessories such as workplace lamps, phone holder or storage baskets
  • Various desk surfaces
  • Tilt adjustment > 30°

Products in this sector with the AGR seal of approval


officeplus GmbH Rottweil
Saline 29
78628 Rottweil
Phone +49 741/24 80 4
Fax +49 741/24 82 30
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Further information

The standing workplace should

  • always be present.
  • encourage users.
  • be easy to use without effort.
  • be directly available on standing up.
  • be easily integrated.
  • be installed in an appropriate position, e.g. fastened to the desk.
  • be mobile, e.g. on castors.
  • be equipped with a foot rest.

Frequent changes between sitting standing and moving that are so important for health and productivity will take place when

  • they require no extra effort from the user,
  • they improve workflows,
  • they offer a directly noticeable personal benefit and
  • there are sufficient incentives to change position.



Changing postures relieve the pressure on the spinal column