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Jess Lee (she/her) for The DEV Team

Posted on

Getting in the FlowState with Standing Desks

FlowState is a community of health, fitness, and wellbeing enthusiasts. It’s built on Forem and is definitely worth checking out if you're looking for some great fitness conversations and advice!

With more and more developers working from home due to a combination of personal preference, the COVID-19 pandemic, and shifting work cultures, many of us are pushing code into production while pulling nerves in our back — it's hard to maintain proper ergonomics outside of the traditional office environment.

This FlowState convo is full of opinions on the merits of standing desks! And when it comes to office setups, I don't need to tell you that we developers are an opinionated lot 🙃

"What are your thoughts about the benefits of standing desks?" by ildi (on DEV and FlowState)

If you’ve been thinking about investing in a standing desk or you already have one and want to share advice on using one, don’t miss this discussion on FlowState!

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Discussion (7)

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zoedreams profile image
☮️✝️☪️🕉☸️✡️☯️

I think they are cool. I enjoy using them. Its handy when I am making music or working on circuit boards, which I loathe to sit down to do. I do think though getting into the flow is independent of the type of desktop you use. Personally I think anyone can get into a flow state pretty much anywhere if they really are into it. Depends on the persons willpower i suppose. Myself, I have flowed in a cramped up tent in the middle of the redwoods working on music production and coding, all the way to a noise pit of a 1000 engineers at a corpo factory settings. I find a great pair of headphones that noise cancel or have good muff's do the best job at deep work `sesses. Also turning off notifications and airplane mode your computer and phone is important to reduce distractions.

all in all if i had to choose of a desktop that moves vertical and one that doesn't im going to get the one that moves up AND down. I wonder if anyone makes devices you put under a desk that doesn't move vertical to make it raise up and down.?>

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graciegregory profile image
Gracie Gregory (she/her)

Great discussion on FlowState! I totally agree with @zoedreams that headphones make all the difference when it comes to getting into a FlowState — with work AND exercise. That said, I also love proper standing desks. I find that my neck and back feel a lot better at the end of the day when I use them — the problem for me is that I never stick to standing. It's hard for me to write and focus when I'm not seated for some reason.

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zoedreams profile image
☮️✝️☪️🕉☸️✡️☯️

I also try to work 52 min then take 15 mins off, walking around and being active. I find that helps me code atleast 8 to 10 sessesions a day without to much pain. The big problem i have with working standing up alot is getting shin splints, if its not my neck its my feet. a healthy balance is best i feel. great topic btw :)

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inhuofficial profile image
InHuOfficial • Edited on

Have you tried an anti-fatigue matt (there is a picture of one in my post above), it might help with your shin splints as it helped with my knees getting sore (not same thing I know but just a suggestion!)

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zoedreams profile image
☮️✝️☪️🕉☸️✡️☯️

ya those do help a lot or a nice oriental rug too.

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inhuofficial profile image
InHuOfficial • Edited on

I use a sit-stand desk and I even have a walking treadmill that goes under my desk when it is in the standing position. ( I can't recommend that to be honest, the walking motion coupled with trying to focus on the screen gave me headaches so I only use it when on the long zoom meetings where you can switch the Mic and camera off now! or if doing light reading / research where I can blow the text up massive).

I have to say it was a worthwhile investment getting a sit stand desk as I have managed to do 16 hour days (you know, times when the **** hits the fan) before without pain.

It is important to get a sit-stand desk, rather than just a standing one, you can end up doing just as much harm standing all the time as sitting all the time.

As someone who used to suffer from a sore shoulder and bad back from sitting all day I can attest to their effectiveness as I don't struggle anymore.

Top Tip: Also buy an "anti-fatigue" mat (the brown thing under the desk on the pictures) as that tiny bit of padding makes standing more comfortable so you can stand longer.

Pictures attached of the monster desk I managed to find - the thing is 2m x 2m (6ft x 6ft). Pictures are from the front seated and back seated and then from the back standing so you can hopefully get a feel for how much flexibility in height you get on these desks (For scale those big monitors are 42 inches).

sit-stand desk in seated position from the front and back and in standing position from back

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leewynne profile image
Lee

Thanks @jess we have a lot of developers now on FlowState, really interesting hearing their take on mindfulness, fitness and wellbeing. Not something you tend to see on other fitness communities.

Personally I don't use one but I can see it coming. Been sat on my butt way too long through this pandemic. I could do with something that automatically lifts when it gets a 'time to stand' ping from my Apple Watch 🙃