I’ve been using a standing desk for over 2 1/2 years. About nine months ago I started mixing in walking on a treadmill to my daily life. I noticed something over the course of this summer – standing at my desk brought back a ton of lower back pain. I thought I had licked the back pain early on with yoga stretches to improve my hip flexor muscles. Turns out, I forgot how to stand.
How are you supposed to stand? There are a TON of great posts out there about the right posture. I usually refer to this one when someone new starts standing. The thing I forgot is something so slight that you won’t notice until you’ve been standing for a while:
BEND YOUR KNEES SLIGHTLY
Seriously? Yup. We/I have a tendency to stand straight up (when I’m not dancing at my standing desk) and pull the knees back, locking them. While this is “easier” to stand it ends up putting a ton of strain on your knees and changes your posture, stressing your back. I thought I was having sciatic nerve problems but it turns out it was in fact sacroiliac joint pain from locking my knees.
Dancing at my desk, walking on the treadmill and balancing on a single foot didn’t seem to aggravate the back. Turns out my knees naturally don’t lock back in those situations. Use your leg muscles to stand by letting the legs bend just slightly. You’ll notice a huge improvement in a short time. I noticed in minutes there was a difference.