The same basic ergonomic principles of a seated workstation apply.  These include:

  • Keep your frequently used items close by your body to avoid over-reaching
    • Mouse and keyboard close
    • Consider your phone position
  • Position desktop items to avoid twisting or other awkward body postures
    • Keep your keyboard and monitor centrally aligned to your sitting position
    • Consider positioning your mouse to the left if you have a large keyboard that, when positioned centrally, requires right shoulder reaching to access your mouse
    • Consider a document holder positioned in between your keyboard and monitor to avoid excessive neck rotation for hardcopy documents
    • Position your monitor so the top of your screen is around eye height
  • When sitting, it is still important to adjust your chair correctly.  Adjust your chair to support a neutral upright posture with weight evenly through your feet and hips.  Check to see if your chair has these adjustment features and adjust your chair accordingly:
    • Back-rest height adjustment – raise to support the neutral curve of your spine
    • Back-rest angle adjustment – angle to support an upright posture
    • Seat height adjustment – allow neutral upper body posture using desktop (consider using a foot rest if your feet remain unsupported after these adjustments)
  • Set the height of your desk so that your elbows are around desk height for both seated and standing tasks.

Diagramatic representation of appropriate ergonomic set-up for Standing Workstation.  An adjustable stool is only necessary if the workstation is not height adjustable.

Transitioning to a Sit-to-Stand workstation

Remember that your ultimate goal of a sit-to-stand workstation is variation. Just as prolonged sitting can be a health hazard, prolonged standing has its own share of negative health effects.  As always, the key is balance!

A conscious and planned transition will ensure you maximise the flexibility that a sit-to-stand workstation provides.

Use a timer or set your outlook calendar to remind you when you need to change position.  Make sure you set another timer to prompt you when to stand again.

Here is a sample progression.

  1. Week 1: Start simple so aim to stand for 10 minutes each hour
  2. Week 2-3: Increase to 15 minutes
  3. Week 3-4: Increase to 20 minutes
  4. Week 4-5: Aim to alternate every  30minutes
  5. Weeks 5 and beyond: Aim to alter your posture at least once per hour.

Be sure to consider the time you spend walking at lunch time as an alternative to sitting and continue to perform your postural relief exercises every 20-30 minutes.

If you need more information, get some specific advice from an Occupational Health Physiotherapist or Ergonomics Specialist.  AXIS are leading providers of ergonomic solutions – contact us today to discuss your personal or organisation’s needs today!