The Standing Desk Experiment

We are very aware that sitting is widely considered the new smoking, and we are always looking for ways to reduce the amount of sitting that we do. We already take frequent breaks and work out every day, but it's hard to get around sitting while translating. Well, turns out it's not. While Dagy has had a custom-built (and relatively pricey) standing desk for many years that she uses relatively frequently (it's a separate structure next to her desk), Judy had never had one. Here's her report on her recent purchase.

Until I discovered Varidesk, I didn't like the prices we were seeing on standings desks (usually $2,500), and also didn't like the fact that I would have to replace my L-shaped desk that I like so much. We recently learned about Varidesk on Twitter (yay for Twitter!), and I finally pulled the trigger some 10 days ago. The desk cost $350, and the package arrived in a huge box in around 5 days. It only took 5 minutes to get things going. Basically, you plop it down on your desk, activate the lever (there are several settings for standing) to raise the desk, and you are all set. It couldn't be easier. The box was heavy (some 40 pounds, I think), but I managed to do set everything up myself.

I have now used the desk for just under a week, and have  actually never sat down during that entire time. I also picked up a $50 mat from Varidesk that makes standing for long periods of time very comfortable. The Varidesk app keeps track of how many calories you are burning and lets you pre-programmed standing and sitting times. You then get a pop-up telling you to sit down or stand. The calorie counter seems a bit off, as the app claims that I have burned 564 calorie in four hours of standing today (seems high to me). I feel healthier, although it does take some getting used to at times, as I'm just not used to standing for long periods of time.

In summary: I am very happy with my purchase and would definitely recommend it to all colleagues, especially at the very attractive price point of $350 -- and that's the most expensive model. I purchased the PRO Plus model, which fits two screens (I have two screens, but also have neck problems, so I usually use just one). The cheapest model is $275, and the entire thing is high-quality, sturdy and very well made.

We don't think we will ever go back to regular desks, and we believe our health will thank us. With my new standing desk, it's really easy to switch between standing and sitting, and we will probably do some combination thereof. For now, my new standing desk is so exciting that I have yet to sit down, but I will also admit to working a bit less during the holiday season. I have yet to test standing for a 10-hour workday.

I'd be delighted to answer any questions you might have about my standing desk. And we would also love to hear about your experiences with a standing desk!


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The entrepreneurial linguists and translating twins blog about the business of translation from Las Vegas and Vienna.

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