David Teten, a partner at New York-based ff Venture Capital, has written a guest post Tim Ferriss’ blog regarding how he sets up his workplace for maximum health and productivity. Since moving to their new location in Manhattan, ff Venture Capital has documented their efforts to create a physically-optimized working environment for their employees.
In the post Teten refers to this New York Times article which breaks down exactly what happens to your body when you sit, especially when you sit for long periods of the day. The most important thing to glean from this piece is that if you sit all day, it doesn’t matter much whether you exercise or not–exercise is not an effective way to counteract sitting for long periods everyday. So, what can you do? Answer: not sit as much.
Teten has taken this information to heart, and has set up his office in a variety of ways to provide options for those that wish not to sit while at work:
- Electronically-adjustable height desks made out of an IKEA top and a Workrite frame
- Anti-fatigue mats (for use with the standing desks)
- Exercise balls for when sitting is inevitable (you should still take regular sitting breaks when you are standing all day, as your legs get tired and it is beneficial to change body posture on occasion)
- Ergonomically-designed office chairs with a variety of good posture-inducing add-ons
- Ergonomic keyboards in a variety of configurations
- Ergonomic mice and specialized mousepads, or an air-mouse
- Standing conference tables for meetings, or even “walking meetings” outside
- Barefoot shoes, such as Vibrams Fivefingers or Sockwa
- Treadmill desks
- Sprung floors (shock-absorbing flooring)
He also lists additional points, such as natural lighting, cultural changes, healthy food, and squat toilets (!), which aren’t necessarily standing desk related, but contribute overall to the health of his employees.