Student with standing desk

School kids benefit from improved learning and performance using standing desks

The term ‘standing desk’ refers to the usage of desks that permits standing while working or studying, and not just sitting on chairs. The concept is not new as many famous personalities are known to have worked while standing, but it has gained recent popularity due to the health benefits associated with the standing desks.

Sitting for long durations is known to have significant detrimental effects on the body as well as the mind of an individual. Initially, large companies popularised the concept of standing desks but it is now also being seen as a feasible option by educational institutions across the world.

Dangers of sitting in school or college

Various studies and research conducted suggest that there are various health risks of sitting too much. A study conducted by the department of cardiovascular medicine, Mayo Clinic, USA concluded that more standing time every day results in more expenditure of energy and prevents weight gain by an individual.

Health hazards of sitting can be easily seen as several lifestyle diseases in the younger generation of today. Below are listed some of the risks of sitting too much:

  • Sitting results in accumulation of more body fat especially around the waist. Therefore sitting leads to obesity amongst people.
  • Longer sitting causes higher cholesterol levels.
  • People sitting continuously for a longer time are known to have high blood sugar levels compared to those who spend less time sitting.
  • Effects of sitting too long can be assessed by the increase in risks of cardiovascular diseases and cancer in such people.
  • Sitting for longer hours reduces the overall energy level, and an individual feels less active.
  • Poor sitting postures tend to send poor signals to the brain and can lead to a variety of problems like hypertension, heartburn and headaches.

Sit-to-stand initiatives have considerable benefits

These can be as follows:

  • Standing leads to more amount of calorie burn in individuals and therefore reduces obesity amongst them.
  • Standing utilises the abdomen as well as the leg muscles in individuals and provides as an exercise for these.
  • Standing reduces the blood sugar levels in people.
  • It is also known to lower the problem of back pain in individuals.
  • Standing does away with the risks associated with bad sitting postures.
  • Standing position may actually reduce the risk of heart disease in people, thereby improving the quality of life.
  • Standing position may actually reduce the risk of heart disease in people, thereby improving the quality of life.
  • Also, the energy levels of people who spend more time standing on their feet is generally higher than those sitting.

Standing desks lead to more engaged students

Doctors and Paediatricians agree that children are not naturally meant to sit and be confined to one place for a long time. Forcing them to sit for the longer time tend to make them lethargic and lose focus. A few schools in the USA have switched to stand-up desks for students to assess the change in the behavior of students. They concluded that standing desks for students allowed more freedom of movement and children feel more comfortable with standing school desks. With student standing desks, children could concentrate better in their studies and felt more active. Teachers also concluded that with standing desks in classrooms, disruptive behavior amongst students was reduced substantially. This is because of the better focus and direction aided by standing desks in the classroom. In conclusion, standing desk for students helps keep the energy level up and results in better performance in students academically.

Active Learning implies improved grades

Sit-stand desks are easily adjustable as per the height of the student. Also, the desk can be adjusted with the seating position if required. Therefore, these desks offer options regarding posture and help to build flexible learning classrooms by giving the students some control over their environment.

A study conducted on 300 school students found a 12% greater engagement regarding focus and class participation amongst the students using standing school desks. The study also pointed out the specific benefits for ADHD students who have problems focusing.

Standing Desk Advantages in schools and colleges

Standing instead of sitting offers various health benefits to individuals. A few of the benefits of standing desks in school are compiled below:

  • A study published in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology1 suggested that standing could help prevent weight gain and help people to actually lose weight in comparison to people who are sitting for six hours daily.  Standing burns 0.15 kcal per minute more than sitting and therefore can lead to a reduction in the growing problem of obesity amongst children.
  • Standing reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease amongst people. Standing position helps keep the blood sugar and cholesterol levels in check thereby lowering the risk of heart disease.
  • Standing and walking helps in lowering the blood glucose levels as well as reduce the risk of cancer amongst patients. As per the American Institute for cancer research, around 50,000 cases of breast cancer and more than 40,000 cases of colon cancer every year are caused by lack of activity and movement.
  • Standing desks for students reduces the problem of back pain in children as compared to children who are sitting for a long time. According to Harvard Medical School, standing not only helps burn more calories but also lowers the problem of shoulder and lower back pain in individuals.
  • Children by nature are restless and find it difficult to sit for a long period. When forced to sit for longer durations, younger children tend to get bored and lose interest in class activities soon. Stand-up desks for students offer a great solution in this area by offering a lot of flexibility to sit or stand as per the child’s need.
  • Student Standing desks allow students to feel comfortable and perform better in these forward-thinking classrooms. Standing desks in classrooms help improve their concentration and take their focus away from disruptive activities.

From the advantages of standing school desks listed above, it is not difficult to conclude that standing desks in the classroom for students helps improve the overall health and well being of children of all ages.

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