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Teachers to Students: Stand Up and Fidget

Were you told to sit down and stay still in school?  If you were scolded for moving around, you might wish you were a student today.

Standing at School

6th grade students at Marine Elementary School, MN. Photo: Ben Garvin for The New York Times

Good for Learning

Schools in at least 19 states are trying standing desks. Teachers are finding that children stay more engaged and alert if they have the option to stand during class. (Add swinging foot rests and kids have an outlet for all their restless leg energy, too.) Teachers are certain that standing desks work. They say the desks allow children to burn up their extra energy so they can focus on their schoolwork.

Marine Elementary School outside of Minneapolis was one of the first schools to use standing desks. The principal, Lynn Bormann, is convinced that by encouraging movement the desks are good for children. She says fewer referrals to the office and fewer sick days show that the desks are making a difference. 1 Continue Reading…

Standing Desks: 4 Great Benefits Beyond Health

If living a longer, healthier life isn’t enough of a reason to sit less, here are more benefits of a standing desk – benefits that go way beyond the medical.

The comments that follow come from the source. They are not from researchers or manufacturers, but from the experiences of people who actually use standing desks.

The Joy of Standing

Photo: jonny goldstein

Let’s look at what the happy converts have to say about standing while they work. Continue Reading…

Successful Approaches to Introducing Ergonomics in the Workplace

“Ergonomics” is the safety and health buzzword in 21st century workplaces. In its broadest sense, ergonomics involves the interaction of the worker with the work. Given that ergonomics focuses on workers and their work environment, it makes sense that introducing ergonomics into a workplace is most successful when workers are involved in the process.

Participatory Ergonomics

Photo: Applied Ergonomics

Participatory Ergonomics

The Ontario Safety and Health Association for Community and Health (OSACH) encourages a participatory approach that actively involves the people directly affected by the ergonomic hazards, that is, the workers. Too often organizations turn ergonomics over to specialists and leave workers out of the process. According to OSACH, the success of an ergonomics programs depends on the level of involvement of workers. Continue Reading…

Silicon Valley Coders Do Stand Up Work

It’s a new trend, but it’s not entirely new. Standing desks, that is. It’s easy to find examples of famous people who did their work standing up decades, even centuries ago: Michelangelo, Jefferson, Churchill. The new part is that this not-so-quirky idea is slowly taking hold in offices across the country.

But nowhere is it more popular, and gaining ground more quickly, than in Silicon Valley–which makes sense since tech companies are, almost by definition, ahead of the curve. San Francisco designer Yves Béhar hit the mark in saying: “Traditional office furniture isn’t well adapted to the way that young companies and young people like to work.”1

AOL offers its employees the option of standing for work. Google offers standing desks as part of its wellness programs. About ten percent of Facebook employees use standing desks. Facebook even offers treadmill desks, so people can not only stand, but also walk while they work.2

Yammer Standers

Employees at Yammer using standing desks. Photo: James Patterson

Continue Reading…