What Are the Benefits of a Standing Desk MatBy Daniel Angelini on August 19, 2021
Sitting down all the time will be the death of you, but the same can be said of standing upright. Contrary to popular belief, maintaining a healthy body and functional joints is less about minimizing time spent sitting and more about spending more time moving.
Constant movement is important in order for us to stay as healthy as possible. Remember the prehistoric times when people would roam to gather food and hunt? There was a whole lot of physical activity going on there, and the threats came in the form of wild carnivores with sharp teeth.
In today's modern times, our worries are less centred on possibly being attacked by beasts. Instead, threats come in the form of chronic pain, degenerating joints, and heart disease. It's incredibly important to incorporate more movement into our day-to-day life.
Of course, with the global pandemic putting the world on pause as many countries go on lockdown, there's been more stationary time than ever too. A lot of companies and organizations shifted to a work-from-home (WFH) situation, which means a lot of people spend hours on end seated in front of their desks. If you're reading this, you might be seated at your desk yourself!
Finding a way to make movement a natural part of your day is the best way to keep your body in good health. A good way to start is with one simple investment: an anti-fatigue standing desk mat.
The Benefits of an Anti-Fatigue Standing Desk Mat
When you get a standing desk mat that is of premium quality, there is a multitude of benefits you’ll get to enjoy. But what makes these mats so special and why can’t you get these same benefits standing on carpet or a hardwood floor? Keep reading to find out.
Your knees are joints that are both complex and bigger than the others. While they’re meant to help you move, they can still suffer from standing for too long. When your knees undergo hours of compressive force and take a lot of weight for too long, it can get hazardous. Your tendons, muscles, and ligaments will end up strained which will keep them from working well.
When you stand on a hard surface for a long time, your weight-bearing joints, feet, and spine will get compressed. On the other end, surfaces that are very soft don't help that much either. They're quite unstable, and over a long period of time, you'll probably sink through them until your feet are hitting the floor below. When you have a proper mat that's anti-fatigue, there will be proper support with stability and handling body strain.
When you stand on hard surfaces for a long time, you may experience compression. That's generally from the tightening of your leg muscles, which leads your blood flow to become restricted. As you move about and walk, your calf muscles are actually acting as a second heart of sorts. They help your blood to be pumped back up through your legs to your heart. The pumping ability of those muscles gets affected when they get tight and stiff from standing. As a result, your heart will end up working harder than it normally does. You would be surprised to find out the association between heart disease and standing for long periods of time!
Studies have shown that people will still sit far more than necessary, even when they have tools that can assist them to stand more. The reason behind this is simple: standing can be uncomfortable and even exhausting. However, an anti-fatigue mat paired with a good sit-stand desk makes you more likely to stand and spend time in movement.
Several studies have found that any discomfort and pain from standing too long can be alleviated by an anti-fatigue mat. Additionally, since the strain on your heart, joints, and muscles is lessened, you'll have more energy. You won't be as run-down or wiped out at day's end.
What are the things that need to be considered before buying an anti-fatigue mat?
- Convenience - Some mats that are available on the market today come with a feature that lets you put them away with the use of your foot. You can nudge the mat under your desk, or to one side of it. That's particularly beneficial for anyone that is unable to bend their back, or just does not want to.
- Design - There are multiple styles of mats you can choose from, depending on what it is you like. There are basic mats, which are simple and have flat surfaces. Other kinds of mats offer stimulation for pressure points through foot-massaging points, mounds or ridges. It's crucial to have a tapered edge so you won't trip, and a bottom that has a non-slip surface.
- Flat or Active - There are two main styles of standing desk mats. Flat mats are self-explanatory: their surface is smooth. Active mats, on the other hand, have a contoured surface.
- Materials - There's usually foam involved with standing desk mats. It's key to find something which doesn't have extreme softness. Foam that's too soft will end up having difficulty with supporting any pressure properly. Before you make a purchase, look up the weight capacity of the mat. You should not be able to feel the floor with your mat of choice, and if you do, it's best to return it.
- Size and Thickness - Make sure you measure where the mats will go, both during use and in storage. That way, you can pick a mat that fits well. A lot of the standard mats available are three-fourths of an inch thick. The contoured ones can go up to some inches.
It's also key to check on the specifications of the standing desk mats you're choosing from, including measurements and thickness.
Getting an anti-fatigue standing desk mat is a great way to incorporate more movement into your daily life. They bring several benefits instead of just standing constantly on carpet or on a hard floor. Among other things, they help prevent cardiovascular strain and can be quite cost-efficient!
Searching for the best anti-fatigue mat for a standing desk? Check out ours today! We have been delivering our premium quality sit-stand desks to businesses and individuals across Australia since 2018.