A VIKA BYSKE standing desk

A VIKA BYSKE standing desk

It’s been almost 2 years since I built my standing desk at work. I built it with parts available from IKEA:

Why I switched to a standing desk

I didn’t switch to this setup because I wanted to stand all day; rather I wanted to avoid sitting all day.  With my standing desk, I can choose multiple working positions: standing, leaning, sitting, standing with one foot up, etc…  When you sit, you’re limited to one posture; when you stand, you have more flexibility.

Furthermore, there are health benefits to a standing desk: studies have shown that sitting at a desk all day causes a number of health problems, and that folks who use standing desks burn more calories.

A review of my experience; 2 years after switching to a standing desk

It’s been great, and I’m not going back. I genuinely have more energy with this set-up. I find I’m able to maintain my focus throughout a full workday.

I also feel less stuck. When I was sitting, I would continue sitting, even if I wasn’t accomplishing anything productive. Now, if I find myself stagnating, I can step away and do something else: I go make a pot of coffee,  or do some stretches.

The VIKA BYSKE set-up is not for everyone. First: you’ll have to be fairly short to use the legs (they have a max length of 42″). Second: the table can be quite wobbly if it’s not anchored to the wall (see a video of me shaking my desk here).

Why some people quit; and how you can avoid it

I know a lot of people that made the switch, but quit shortly after. If you’re going to switch: be prepared for a transition period. There are 3 keys to success at the beginning:

  1. Purchase an anti-fatigue mat and a bar stool. Don’t skip this step!
  2. Take it easy: don’t try to stand the whole day! Use the bar stool to sit and lean on, and give your legs a break.
  3. Raise your monitor off the desk. Again: I’m 5’8 tall. My desk is 42 1/4″ high. I raise my monitors an additional 6-7 inches off my desk. Here’s a good diagram.

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  1. I got an adjustable desk a few months ago. The problem for me at first was that after I got a little tired I put it back to normal height. Then a few weeks ago I decided to put it up and just leave it up. To make sure I keep it there I put a bookcase under the desk, so it’s no longer really adjustable without a lot of extra work. I do have a standard height table perpendicular to the adjustable desk that I can use when I need to.

    I’m very happy with this arrangement. It’s still flexible but with a bias to standing, instead of the reverse. I do feel more alert, and when I walk somewhere I feel my posture has improved.

  2. thanks for great article. since i like to stand, sit, and sometimes get very relaxed and sit with my feet up : http://sourceforge.net/p/frankenstand/wiki/frankenstand/

  3. Love it!

  4. Do you use a stool for sitting or leaning up against?

  5. I made this same desk for my office at work, so I couldn’t attach it to the wall with hardware. Instead, I used a few strips of Quakehold Museum Putty on the long side and pressed it against the wall. No wobbling whatsoever and it feels quite secure even when I lean against it. I would? guess this would also help even if you could only attach the shorter end of the desk to a flat surface or wall.

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