"Butt in chair. There is no other
single thing that will help you more
to become a writer." Jane Yolen
Contradict Jane Yolen? Wouldn't dream of it!
Recent medical studies have found that prolonged sitting is a serious health risk factor--even if you also get regular exercise. The Mayo Clinic summarizes it here.
As you age, the risks increase. Researchers found that after 60, "every additional hour a day you spend sitting is linked to doubling the risk of being disabled--regardless of how much moderate exercise you get...."
The boildown for writers? Get used to working with your butt out of that chair!
We have some famous exemplars:
Sir Walter Scott composed Marmion while galloping the braes on horseback. (That's one expensive office chair.)
And Edith Sitwell reclined to write . . . in a cushioned coffin. (The only possible objection to that might be the awkwardness of balancing a laptop on your midsection.)
More realistically, we can emulate Hemingway and Nabokov. They wrote at standing desks. (And don't worry about "losing your voice." Standing may have contributed to Hemingway's famous concision, but it had no such effect on the word-loving Russian.)
The illustration at right shows recommended monitor and typing angles for standing work. Desk measurements will differ according to individual height and proportions, so--
--for more precise ergonomics (and shopping and construction suggestions) consult sources like Bob Vila (6 DIY Standing Desk Projects) or lifehacker.
Or seek inspiration here or here
CAVEAT: As any waitress can tell you, working on your feet all day carries its own risks. It can contribute to the development of varicose veins or hardening of the arteries.
A preliminary study among younger, healthy males showed the benefit of consciously varying one's work posture at specific intervals. It's not clear yet whether these benefits extend to workers of all ages, or to those with pre-existing health conditions. But Dear Boy was already inspired to devise this dual-position desk. It requires two monitors and two keyboards, but only one computer:
My own solution is still a WIP. I'll report in a future post.
Meanwhile, what's your . . . um, position . . . on this issue?