Published on April 30th, 2014 | by admin
Making A Stand Against Musculoskeletal Related Disorders
Would you rather stand than sit at your desk? Apparently the notion of standing at our desks instead of sitting is gaining momentum. As we know, office workers are prone to suffer from musculoskeletal related disorders which are associated with spending large amounts of time sat at a workstation. Often called ‘Office-Itis’, our own survey discovered that nearly two-thirds of Britain’s office workers complain of aches and pains at their workstation such as back and neck ache.
Worse still it has also been claimed that sitting at work for long periods of time may potentially cause cardiovascular problems or vulnerability to diabetes.
Whilst we appreciate that there are a number of exercises which can be undertaken to address these symptoms as well as a range ergonomic products including back support and footrests to alleviate symptoms, advocates of the seemingly radical suggestion claim that standing would not only benefit employees health but would also improve their energy and creativity.
Of course for a large organisation it would be cost prohibitive to suddenly change all the desks in an office but when the cost of employee absence is factored in which is associated with musculoskeletal related disorders, perhaps even the financial outlay could be justified.
It is interesting to note that going back in time to the 19th century, standing was actually the norm at work but things changed over time following ‘Taylorism’ – time and motion studies applied to office work.
The idea of standing at work clearly isn’t as far-fetched as we might first anticipate when we learn that some firms are considering giving staff a choice as to if they want to stand or sit. Indeed that has recently been implemented in Denmark where it is now mandatory for employers to offer their staff sit-stand desks. So bearing that in mind the notion that standing at work could make a comeback isn’t as far fetched as first thought.