For many years, I have coveted a standing desk. Or even better, a desk that I can use both sitting and standing. On days when I don’t have clients, I can spend many hours at my desk, and although I jump up regularly to get a cup of tea, scratch the cat or just to sprint up and down the corridor wildly to get a new burst of enthusiasm, the hours of sitting sometimes take their toll. The whole sitting is the new smoking vibe the world was giving me didn’t help.
Fast forward to last month and my dreams came true! Varidesk gifted me a the ProPlus 36: a desktop contraption which means I can sit or stand and convert it super-easily whenever I want. This is going to sound a little like one big advertisement but actually I just really love it and it’s made a huge difference to how much I can write in a day. (I’m blogging this on a blog-batch-evening and it’s my fourth blog post of the night, and I feel like I’ve barely got started because I’ve divided this time between sitting and standing.)
I’ve tried to take some beautiful pictures of my Varidesk in situ but my office faces the window and also isn’t too wide, so the angles and lighting are horrid, but you’ll kind of get the idea:
In the interests of full transparency, here’s my pros and cons list of my Varidesk.
- The obvious: it is a wonderful break to move between sitting and standing whenever I start to feel stuck or stiff in either position. It also seems to give my brain a bit of new lease on life too. I think this version is much better than just having a standing desk – I certainly wouldn’t want to stand and work for more than about half an hour at at time, and I only do it for about half of my working day in total – so being able to quickly switch between sitting and standing is ideal.
- For me, it’s also put everything at just the right height. I work with a laptop hooked up to a second monitor, and the laptop was previous too low (I didn’t really realise until it was raised on the desk), and the monitor was previously balanced on two huge books. Now it’s all just right! The keyboard height is perfect too, and it feels perfect when I’m standing – I feel like I’m a poster child for a physiotherapist’s lecture on good posture.
- It also keeps my desk tidier. I can’t spread papers all over the place if I want to easily move the desk up and down. Enforced tidiness is quite useful for me!
- When you first get your desk it is ridiculously heavy. (Later this is a good thing, because you can tilt it all the way up and it never even hints at tipping, but at set up it’s tricky.) The packaging very clearly says getting this thing onto your desk is a two-person job. When I was setting it up, there was just me. I thought – no worries, I can do this. I COULD NOT! So believe the packaging when it says you need two people, and if you’re like me, take the potentially humiliating step of asking your ex-husband for help when he drops your son home, because getting your desk set up will be worth it!
- If you have a lot of cords then this can get tricky when you’re moving the desk up and down. I have too many cords, for example cords heading up to my second screen, all the usual power cords, cords for my microphone, etc etc. Invariably I am not tidy enough with them and something gets a bit stuck when I’m moving the desk – however it is forcing me to be tidier so that’s probably a good thing.
So that’s my take on the standing desk. I’m thrilled to have one, and it’s definitely helping my productivity and helps me avoid the back pain I sometimes get if I sit for too long at once. I’m no expert, but just based on my own experience, I’m sold!