Best Standing Desks 2023

Reasons to Start Standing

As people learn about the dangers of extended periods of sitting, more are looking for the best standing desk. Many users experience a wide range of benefits from moving more while they work, which usually involves switching from sitting to standing every 20 minutes (depending on their comfort level).

The most common benefits are:

  • increased productivity
  • better mood
  • higher energy levels
  • reduced back and neck pain
  • weight loss

Besides these benefits, extensive research shows that users reduce their risk of some types of cancer, diabetes, obesity, and early mortality.

Dan Kois of New York Magazine conducted a fascinating experiment where he stood for 30 days straight. Eating dinner, going to a movie, working, everything but when he was sleeping! Until he figured out that he should be stretching, he was getting cramps as he wasn't used to that much standing. At the end of the experiment, he stated that he had lost a few pounds and had the most productive month of his life! You can read about his experience here.

Our research is supported by our readers. We may earn a small commission when you make a purchase through links on our site - advertiser disclosure

Types of Standing Desks

If you're shopping for a standing desk, it's best to get familiar with the available types of standing desk options. While there are two main types, there are also many different sub-categories, all with their pros and cons. The main two types of standing desks are standing desks and standing desk converters:

Most common types of standing desks - Electic, Manual Crank and Converters

Standing desks allow you to stand while working at your desk or computer. They are also known as stand-up desks, sit-to-stand desks, or adjustable standing workstations. Choosing the best standing desk for you comes down to whether you want to replace your existing desk or convert it using a standing desk converter. When it comes to price, there are standing desk options for nearly any budget, ranging from $150 to over $2,000. Typically a great value for money standing desk will be $500 to $750. A quality standing desk converter can be around $200.

There are many reasons why people are seeking out adjustable standing desks for their work or home office. Adding intermittent standing to your workday has proven to help avoid and treat back, neck, and joint pain and improve productivity and energy levels. 

Standing Desk Converters vs. Full Standing Desks

Full Standing Desks

As the name suggests, these are standing desks designed to replace your existing desk and are free-standing units that allow you to sit or stand. They are usually electric or non-electric:

  • Electric - Electric-standing desks raise or lower by electric power, usually from one or two motors operated via an electronic control unit. These are the most popular type of full standing desk because they transition from sitting to standing easily. Many control units include memory presets so you can save your ideal standing and sitting heights. The main drawback of electric standing desks is their price and longevity. Most quality desks with great warranties start at $500, although some budget-friendly options exist below that mark.
  • Non-Electric - Non-electric standing desks make use of manually operated cranks or pneumatics (think gas struts on the trunk or hood of your car) to raise and lower their desk. These options are often very simple, reliable, and cost-effective. The main drawback is the effort/time required to raise or lower your desk. There is also effort needed to return to the same sitting or standing position time and time again.

Standing Desk Converters

Converters allow you to turn your existing desk into a standing desk. These are great options if you're on a tighter budget or unwilling to replace your existing desk.

  • Non-electric - The most common type of standing desk converter doesn't use motors or electricity. They are easy to raise and lower manually; some can even be raised with one hand. The main advantage of converters is cost and ease of setup. Many also require little to no assembly. The main con is a smaller work surface while standing as well as potential stability issues (although this varies from model to model).
  • Electric - These are the most popular type of adjustable standing desk. The main drawback is cost. With many electric standing desk converters costing $250 to $350, it's not much of a jump in price to buy a full standing desk and do away with the converter concept.
  • Fixed - Fixed standing desk converters are not adjustable. They are designed to convert a workspace from sitting to standing but do not allow you to go back and forth easily. These are often very inexpensive due to their simplicity.

More Standing Options by Budget

There's a pretty wide range of prices for standing desks, as well as types. If you search on Google, YouTube, Amazon, or social media, you're going to get a variety of different results when you search "standing desks." You may get slightly different results with the search "standing desk converters," "sit-to-stand desks," "height-adjustable desks," "standing desk for business," or "adjustable standing desks," but there aren't any universally standard terms for the different types of standing desks. Here are some of the different types you'll find and their purpose, listed from cheapest to most expensive.

Laptop Stands: Under $100

They could be used to hold your laptop if you're sitting on a couch or bed, though that involves looking down at your screen, which puts pressure on your neck and back.

They can also be used to get your screen a little higher, so you're not looking down as much. The problem is that you're still looking down, which means you have to raise your arms to type. To not create tension in your neck, back, and wrists, you need to separate your screen from your keyboard. The cheapest and easiest way to do this is to attach a keyboard to your laptop via USB. When you're sitting, you can leave your laptop on the table and use the keyboard to type. When you stand, you just lift the laptop on top of the laptop stand and use the keyboard in the same place as when you were sitting.

We're not big fans of laptop stands because of poor ergonomics. We tested the Varidesk Soho and were unable to highly recommend to readers because of the inability to maintain proper posture as long as we typically like. However, laptop stands like the Varidesk Soho are an excellent option for small spaces.

Standing Workstation/Mobile Carts: $100-$200

These desks don't adjust to a sitting position and are often used by medical professionals who need to type standing up and to move their workstation around.

The Homcom 30" displayed is well under $100 and has caster wheels with a locking mechanism, so you don't move around. One nice feature is the separation of the monitor stand and the keyboard tray, which will make it easier to get your monitor close to eye level and your keyboard closer to your hips.

Ergonomic experts don't recommend standing all day, so we don't usually recommend these mobile workstations. But if you feel that you'll be able to stay mobile while standing, and be ok with not having the option of sitting, these units are the cheapest way to start standing while you work.

Standing Desk Converters: $100-$400

These are units you place on top of your existing desk and have been made popular in large part due to Varidesk. They were the first company to advertise on television.

The nice thing about converters is that they usually require little to no assembly-you just take it out of the box and put them where you want it on your desk.

Varidesk now has a lot of competition and have improved on their design. Though most converters are manually operated, where you squeeze one or two levers on the sides of the top to raise it and lower it, there are now electric converters.

Standing desk converters are usually cheaper than full standing desks, so they'll save you some money. The tabletops aren't as large, so you might find it hard to have enough space to take notes, but they're a great way to get you standing.

Crank Adjustable Standing Desks: $200-$400

These aren't as common as converters or electric standing desks. They're usually around the same price as converters but are very similar to electric standing desks.

Our team found when they used crank desks, they tended to stay sitting longer. It may sound lazy, but when you have to walk to the side of the desk (though some like the Devaise have it more conveniently in front) and crank the desk up and down many times to adjust the height, you tend not to change positions as much. And most people default to their old habit of sitting.

If you're in a very quiet office and you don't want the slight noise of raising and lowering your desk, a crank desk may work for you. You'll save money because you're not paying for a motor and keypad to control the height of your desk, but you may be sacrificing standing as much as you should. For that reason, we don't usually recommend crank adjustable standing desks.

Electric Standing Desks: $400 & Above

Electric is the most expensive of all of the different types of adjustable height desks, though there is a wide range of prices. At the lower end, you can find one for around $500, and at the high end, $2,500.

Electric height-adjustable desks have a control pad that raises and lowers the desk and usually includes memory presets so you can save your favorite standing and sitting heights.

Of all the different types of desks, electric sit-to-stand desks (as well as crank desks) can hold the most amount of weight. This isn't an issue for most people, but if you have multiple monitors, books, a purse, or bag, it can quickly add up.

If you're serious about getting the benefits of standing and not being sedentary while you work, this is the best way to go. If you already have a desk, you can get a standing desk converter, but I found that when I tested converters, I tended to sit a little more than I did when testing an electric standing desk.

Our Process

To select the best height-adjustable desk, we went through an in-depth process, including research and hands-on testing. The standing desk market is constantly evolving, with new companies launching new products every day. To maintain our up-to-date information, we keep tabs on the changing market and maintain relationships with the top standing desk manufacturers. In addition to the time invested in research and relationships, we have years of experience on which we draw to understand what makes a great desk. This experience allows us to identify problem areas and help others to get the most quality for their budget.

Criteria Used in Reviews

Our Experience Reviewing Standing Desks

One of the most important parts of our review process is to establish a set of criteria that we use to evaluate each desk and the company that manufactures it. These criteria help keep us focused and objective on recommending a standing desk for you.

Here's what we consider to be important when shopping for a standing desk:

  • Overall value - This is ultimately how we decide. It is a combination of all the above criteria weighted by the desk price. We tend to favor desks that deliver maximum value for the money. This ensures you're getting everything you need in a standing desk without overpaying.
  • User reviews - We choose to review desks that have received high ratings from customers like you.
  • Quality - We pay attention to the materials used and the quality of the construction.
  • Range of adjustment - This is the difference between the minimum and maximum height of the desk, which is important to consider if you are below or above average height, plan to have children use the desk, or are purchasing desks for an office and a variety of employee heights.
  • Stability - One of the most important criteria for a standing desk is how much wobbling occurs when the desk is at standing height. This is why we almost always recommend desks with heavy steel frames, it really makes a difference.
  • Ergonomics - The greatest benefit of using a standing desk is that your productivity, mood, and energy levels rise. That's because you are now moving from sitting to standing throughout your workday, and the desk is comfortable and easy to use. Many people start using adjustable standing desks because they want to reduce leg, neck, back, or wrist pain. To learn more about the proper way to sit and stand at your desk, check out our guide to proper sitting and standing ergonomics.
  • Ease of adjustment - It's recommended that you switch from sitting to standing a few times per hour. If the desk is difficult to adjust, you'll tend to stay sitting.
  • Design - Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but we can all agree that some standing desks are easier to behold than others.
  • Customer service - This is an important factor when ordering or dealing with delivery, repairs, or returns.
  • Assembly - Most standing desk converters, such as the Varidesk Pro Plus 36, require no assembly, as they come out of the box and are ready to be placed on your existing desk. But if you buy a full standing desk you will have to at least attach the legs to the tabletop, and often a cable management tray, and other items.
  • Speed of height adjustment - Measured in inches per second, the higher quality desks tend to switch from sitting to standing faster.
  • Noise level - The noise of the motor when adjusting is measured in decibels. If you work in a quiet office this may be an important factor.
  • Shipping - Some desks can take up to 8 weeks to arrive after you order them! And some arrive in separate shipments, which can be inconvenient.
  • Overall feel - Aside from ergonomics, certain desks are more comfortable to use than others. For example, the tabletop may have rounded edges, which most people prefer to hard edges.
  • Surface area - Some desks have more space on the desktop than others; remember to look at the dimensions to make sure that your desk will fit in the space that you have allotted.
  • Lift capacity - If you have a lot of items on your desk, this can be important. There is a wide range for standing desks; we've seen as low as 20 lbs. and as high as 360 lbs.
  • Warranty - Standing desk companies tend to have more extended and better warranties when they sell high quality standing desks.

We started by reviewing one of the early leaders in the standing desk market, Vari (formerly Varidesk). We bought everything they offered, and our team used their standing desk, converters of different sizes, cubicle converters, their mat, and more. We've tested the cheapest standing desks on the market (cardboard desks!), and the most expensive. One of our editors even built his own desk!

Almost immediately after we started reviewing standing desks and converters, we saw that people who want to be less sedentary have a lot of other options. So we began testing treadmill desks, bike desks, home treadmills, ergonomic keyboards, monitor arms, standing desk mats, and posture improvement products.

Buyers can easily become overwhelmed with so many choices. More and more companies are getting into the standing desk space. We strive to give our followers the best recommendations for their particular situation. For example, one reader may be over 6'5", and another may be on a tight budget. Another may need a desk with a great cord management system, and another does a lot of gaming. We want every person to find what they need for their unique situation.

We've developed specific criteria for each type of standing desk product or accessory. Most of our readers don't have the time to read hundreds of reviews, watch hours of video, talk to manufacturers, or have the experience to compare a desk to other top desks. We do all of this so you don't have to.

Another thing that we pride ourselves on is our honest reviews. We've been in the industry for a few years now and we see a large number of biased reviews. The products may still be good, but companies will exaggerate their strengths and their competitors' weaknesses. We're not naming names or getting involved in the drama, but there have been a few lawsuits. When we like a product we will recommend it, and we'll also tell you the drawbacks, as there's no perfect standing desk out there.

We also frequently update our reviews. As we do more testing and get more information, our rankings will change.

Our Standing Desk Recommendations

Without further delay, here's our list of top standing desk recommendations for 2022. We feel these desks represent some of today's best deals.

We've been testing standing desks for years, and our ratings are based on 16 criteria (ergonomics, range and ease of adjustment, design quality, user reviews, customer service, speed, noise, stability, overall feel, surface area, lift capacity, warranty, shipping, ease of assembly, and overall value).

Best Overall

The Fully Jarvis Bamboo Standing Desk is our top choice for 4 years in a row because it rates higher in many criteria than a number of desks that are significantly more expensive.

  • Stability, even at higher heights.
  • Tons of customizations available: bamboo (0.75" thick) or dark bamboo (1" thick) desktop, 7 different sizes, rectangle or contour shape, with or without grommets (holes to funnel wires through), as well as 4 different frame colors.
  • Lots of paid upgrades available such as a clamp-mounted surge protector and powered grommets.
  • 350 lb. weight capacity.
  • 4 programmable height settings and an up and down toggle.
  • All-inclusive 10-year-warranty on all frame components, including motors and electronics; 5-year-warranty on the desktop.
  • Easy assembly.
  • Made of environmentally-friendly bamboo that is sustainable, is grown without fertilizers or pesticides, and provides 35% more oxygen than the equivalent amount of trees.

Read more on the Jarvis Bamboo.

Best Value Runner Up

The standout feature of this desk is the beautiful desktop! This could have been our top choice, but the Jarvis Bamboo edged it out with its amazing warranty and higher weight capacity. That being said, one of our team members has tried both and prefers the Vari as it's an amazing desk.

  • 5 finishes available: reclaimed wood, butcher block, darkwood, as well as white and black.
  • The table has double-chamfered edges and a durable, laminate finish that cleans easily.
  • Available in 48" x 30" (200 lb. weight capacity) and 60" x 30" (220 lb. weight capacity).
  • Several optional upgrades from a company that specializes in standing desks.
  • 4 programmable height settings and an up and down toggle.
  • 30-day money-back guarantee.
  • 5-year warranty.
  • Free shipping in the contiguous U.S. and delivers within 2-5 days.
  • The motor is powerful and quiet.
  • Easy assembly.
  • GreenGuard,GreenGuard Gold,ANSI/BIFMA certifications.

Read more on the Vari.

Another Great Desk

The ApexDesk Elite is an excellent desk with tons of desktop color options.

  • Available in 8 different desktop colors, black or white frame and legs, 71" and 60" tabletop.
  • MDF wood top with a smooth matte finish and beveled edges making it easy to clean.
  • Contoured front edge for better ergonomics (easier to reach items on your desk).
  • 1.5"/second adjusting speed.
  • 225 lb. weight capacity.
  • Includes cable management tray.
  • Free shipping to the contiguous U.S. ships within 2-7 days.
  • 30-day risk-free returns available.
  • 2-year warranty on motor and parts.

Read more on the ApexDesk Elite.

Best Budget Desk

The Fully Remi doesn't feel or look like a budget desk, it its one of the best affordable options.

  • One motor in each lifting column (many budget desks have only one motor).
  • 1" thick desktop made of particle board that is 84% pre-consumer recycled wood fiber and meets the Eco-Certified Composite Standard.
  • Laminate tops have 90° corner detail.
  • Available in black, oak, or white.
  • 3 desktop sizes: 38" x 27" for a small footprint, 46" x 27", and 59" x 27".
  • 4 preset controls with digital display.
  • You can choose 1, 2, or no powered grommets, no surge protector or one clamp-mounted surge protector, as well as casters to give you the option to move your desk easily.
  • Quick assembly.
  • Free shipping and 30-day returns.
  • 10-year warranty on frame, motors, mechanical parts and electrical components; 5-year warranty on the desktop (excluding wear and tear and damage caused by assembly, repair, or improper assembly).
  • Read more on the Fully Remi.

Best Low-Budget Desk

For the low price, this is an excellent standing desk on a tight budget.

  • 48" wide x 24" deep.
  • High ratings on Amazon.
  • Range of 28" to 46".
  • Available in oak, light cherry, walnut, and black desktop.
  • Desktop is not one continuous piece - it's two pieces.
  • Free shipping.
  • 4 programmable height presets, plus up/down toggle.
  • Grommet hole for wire management.
  • Cable-management basket hangs under the desk to keep wires organized.
  • 1-year limited warranty.

Read more on the SHW Electric.

Comparison Table

Use the table below to compare some of the most important stats when considering a standing desk. The range of height adjustment can be of particular interest if you are taller or shorter than average. Also, depending on your plans for the desk, consider the lift capacity, as it varies dramatically from desk to desk.

Desk Min
Warranty Price
Fully Jarvis Bamboo 23.25" 49.25" 350 10 years $475
Vari  25.5" 50.5" 250 5 years $550
ApexDesk Elite
Series 60"
29" 48" 225 2 years $579
Fully Remi 27.25" 46.75" 250 10 years $479
SHW Electric 48" 31" 42" 110 1 year $250

What Each Table Column Means:

  • Min height (inches) - the minimum height that the desk can be adjusted to, as reported by the manufacturer.
  • Max height (inches) - the maximum height that the desk can be adjusted to as reported by the manufacturer. 
  • Lift capacity (pounds) - the weight that the desk can hold while in motion raising or lowering. Most of these desks do report higher capacities when stationary. 
  • Warranty - the length of time within which the seller agrees to replace the desk. Warranty lengths and terms may differ for the desktop, frame, and motor.
  • Price in USD - this is the current price of the desk as of the updated date of this guide.

Additional Thoughts on Each Desk

Jarvis Bamboo

For most people, budget will be one of the most important factors in deciding what they'll buy. The Fully Jarvis Bamboo Standing Desk is our top choice and is the second cheapest desk, but the desktop size is the most significant factor in the price. The base price is for the 30" x 24", but if you upgrade to the 60" x 30", you would then be paying more than the Vari or Apex Elite 60". The upgraded sizes are:

  • 36" x 24" +$20
  • 42" x 24" +$30
  • 48" x 30" +$70
  • 60" x 30" +$150
  • 72" x 30" +$240
  • 78" x 30" +$290

Though the Fully Jarvis desktop doesn't have many color choices, (as it's only available in 0.75" natural bamboo and 1" dark bamboo which should fit most office decors), one of the strong points of Fully's Jarvis is the amount of customizations available. There are 7 different tabletop sizes, and though most customizations add to the cost, it's great to be able to get what you want:

  • The frame in black, gray, white, or alloy.
  • Rectangle or contour desktop. Contoured tops have a curve on the front side of the desk so you can reach things on your desk more easily (which is good ergonomics).
  • Standard range of adjustment from 29" to 48.25", or 24.5" to 50" (accommodating shorter and taller people).
  • Standard up/down switch or programmable controls with 4 settings (2 people could each have a preferred sitting and standing desk height).
  • Casters if you want to be able to move your desk easily.

Fully also offers many accessories to make your desk more organized and easier to use, such as wire management, chairs, standing desk mats, monitor arms, and other extras.

The Fully Jarvis Standing Desk also has the strongest warranty of any desk we considered: a 10-year-warranty on all frame components, including the motor and controls, and 5 years on the desktop.

Vari Electric

One of the standout features of the Vari is the desktop. It's a thick desktop at 1.5", and we chose the reclaimed wood, which is one of the best looking desks we've seen (the butcher block looks great too, but we haven't seen it in person). We've reviewed much more expensive desks that are made of real wood, but some woods are softer, and if you write on a paper or sticky note that's on the desk, the wood will get an imprint of what you wrote. This desk looks beautiful and has a slightly textured surface that will stand up to a lot of wear and tear. And the chamfered edges are a nice design choice.

The assembly of the desk is simple and doesn't take very long. You'll probably need a second person to flip the table over onto its legs once you're done, unless you're strong or very determined.

This desk is a great choice. With lots of quality certifications (GreenGuard, GreenGuard Gold, UL962 Listed, and Certified to the UL962 Standard for Household and Commercial Furnishings), Vari is one of the leaders in the standing desk industry, with a lot of different types of standing desk and accessories.

There aren't as many customizations with Vari as with the Jarvis. Vari offers more desktop colors (5 in total), but you can't customize the frame color, desktop shape (not contour in the front), and there are no grommets. But the Vari looks and feels more substantial than the Jarvis.

ApexDesk Elite

The ApexDesk Elite has a dual-motor system for changing heights. An advantage is that it can lift a lot of weight (we've heard that it can lift 320 lbs. without an issue), and it's faster than most desks at 1.5"/second, but the downside is that it's a little bit louder than most desks.

The desk is also very heavy and feels substantial. The size options are 71" x 33" x 1" (which is huge), or 60" x 28" x 1" (also big). The Jarvis offers a 72" x 30" and a 78" x 30" option, with the 78" being the longest we tested, but the ApexDesk being the deepest at 33".

There are 8 color options and the desktop has a nice textured surface. You have a choice of white or black legs and frame.

The drawbacks of this desk are minor issues. The controls look cheaper than the Jarvis or Vari, the height range isn't going to work for the very tall or very short, and the stability when the desk is raised isn't as good as our other top choices.

But if you're looking for a very large table top with a massive lift capacity, the ApexDesk is a great choice.

Fully Remi

The Fully Remi is an amazing desk for the price. Fully have done an excellent job at finding ways to make a desk cheaper without making a substantial difference in the user's standing desk experience. One of the ways you can tell is by the warranty. For a desk of this price, 10 years on the frame, mechanical parts, and electrical components is excellent, and 5 years on the desktop is very good.

One of the ways they have saved money is by using a different material for the desktop - particle board in the laminate desktop. If you're trying to save money and don't require a wood desktop, this desk is a great choice.

Fully didn't skimp on the motor. Usually budget desks only have one motor, but the Remi has one in each lifting column. In the long-term, you'll be less likely to have issues with raising and lowering your desk.

Jarvis offers several accessories to all of their desks that are excellent, including chairs, stools, anti-fatigue mats, balance boards, wire-management systems, casters to be able to roll your desk around easily, and a monitor arm to free up space on your desk and lift your monitor to eye height. If you're on a budget, you may not be interested in spending the extra money, but they can make a difference in your standing desk experience.

SHW Electric

The SHW Electric is a solid desk for the price. It will fall short when compared to the top desks at higher price points, but is a superior desk at under $250. In the past if you wanted to stand while you worked and you were on a budget, you had to get a standing desk converter (a unit that you put on top of an existing desk.) One of the main issues with converters is that they don't have a large workspace, so if you like to keep a lot of stuff on your desk, it's not going to work.

It's a good-looking desk with 4 memory presets. There are 4 color options: black, light cherry, walnut, and oak. The desk has been rated highly by many users, with the main complaint being that the electronics failed. For this reason, we recommend keeping the packing materials in case you have to return the desk.

Another point to mention is that there is a grommet for passing your wires through. The product description does list the grommet, but some of the pictures don't show the grommet hole, which is a nice feature for keeping your desk organized.

One important aspect of this desk that isn't evident from the pictures is that the desktop comes in two pieces. This was probably done to reduce the size of the package for shipping, and some complain that the seam collects dust and debris. It's not a huge deal, but for some people this could be a deal-breaker.

This desk also isn't great for the very tall or very short. Its lowest height is 7.75" taller than the Jarvis, and 7.25" shorter at the highest setting. If you're under 5'2" or over 6'3", you may be uncomfortable using this desk and if you have any back issues, you could aggravate your back.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are our answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about the best standing desks.

Are standing desks healthy?

The proper use of a standing desk can be a healthier alternative to sitting. Using adjustable desks can also increase movement, which can reduce the risk for diabetes, heart disease, and obesity.

How many calories do you burn standing vs. sitting?

Standing four hours a day can burn an additional 252 calories for an average male and burn 196 for an average female. Use our calculator to get an estimate based on your body.

Is there a way to convert my existing desk to a standing desk?

Yes, many choose to invest in a standing desk converter to use existing furniture. This is often a less expensive and easier option since converters are cheaper and usually require no assembly.

What are the pros and cons of a standing desk converter?

Compared to standing desks, standing desk converters are:

  • Cheaper - Most standing desk converters are well under $400, with budget-friendly options dipping below $100 and high-quality converters hovering around the $300 mark. 
  • No assembly required - Most standing desk converters require zero assembly, while others take no more than 5 minutes. Many standing desk companies are now making assembly easier or shipping nearly complete, often only requiring tool-free assembly.

The advantages of standing desks vs. converters:

  • More desktop space - Standing desks usually give you double to triple the amount of desktop space compared to a converter. If you want to clear even more desktop space, look into monitor arms.
  • Electric controls and keypad - There are a few electric converters, but they are rarer. We've found that when you have to manually adjust a converter, you tend to not switch positions as much, which means most people will just revert to sitting.
  • More options available - There are a lot more options when it comes to desktop color and material, size of the tabletop, frame color, wire management, and accessories. Normally with a converter, you'll have the option of black, occasionally white, or some variation of white, and in rare cases, gray.
  • Design - This is subjective, but many people find that full standing desks are better looking, mainly because there are more color and tabletop options.
  • Lift Capacity - Most converters will lift no more than 50 lbs., whereas standing desks will often lift 3 times that or more. This isn't usually an issue for most people unless you have many things on your desktop, such as books, a bag, multiple monitors, etc.

If you're working with a limited budget or have a desk that you like, a standing desk converter is a good option. But if you can afford a standing desk, especially an electric sit-to-stand desk, we feel that increased work productivity and the health benefits are worth the price difference.

What are my options if I'm on a budget?

There are many great adjustable standing desks in the $200 to $400 range that still offer good quality, features, and design. For the DIY consumer, you can build all or most of your own standing desk.

Do standing desks help with back and neck pain?

Standing and the use of standing desks place up to 50% less stress on your lower back than sitting. Standing also makes it easier to maintain good posture, which can help reduce pain as well.

What is the right desk height for a standing desk?

Proper desk height varies from person to person and should be right at elbow height. Test the height by touching your keyboard to ensure that your wrists are in line with your forearm.

Getting Started with Standing

Getting into a routine of standing while at work takes time. Here are a few tips to help you get started:

  • Change positions every 20 minutes. The goal isn't necessarily to stand all day - it's to keep moving. You can keep a chair or stool nearby, set a timer if you need to, and make a change every 20 minutes. If you are sitting, stand. If you are standing, get water; you can stretch, do squats, do calf raises, and just keep moving! For the time when you want to sit there are a lot of different options from conventional office chairs to stools designed for standing desks. The time you don't spend standing is just as important, make sure you have a comfortable chair or stool.
  • Get a standing desk mat. They're not necessary, but many people find that they get less tired with the added comfort. Check out our top standing desk mats for more information.
  • Wear the right shoes. If you're wearing shoes like high heels, standing for long periods will be uncomfortable and may do more harm than good. Bring comfortable shoes to work, or just socks, and if you have fallen arches, wear orthotics.
  • Set the ideal desk height. Using a standing desk at an incorrect height (whether standing or sitting) will cause more harm than good. Finding and returning to your ideal height for standing and sitting is easier to do with a desk with memory settings, but at minimum, get familiar with your ideal height for both positions before you develop your routine. Refer to our Proper Workplace Ergonomics guide for specifics on how your elbows, wrists, head, as well as your monitors, should be positioned for standing and sitting.

You will probably find that certain activities are done better while standing and others sitting. Many find that work that requires intense concentration is better done sitting. Watching videos, talking on the phone, and other duties that require less focus can be done standing. And there's another way to work while not sitting, and that is leaning. You can use a leaning chair or stool and lean back against it, such as Varidesk's Varichair or the Swopper.

Top Standing Desk Companies

Not in any particular order of quality or importance, here are some of the leaders in the standing desk and standing desk converters industry:

  • Vari - based in Coppell Texas, Varidesk is the most well-known brand for standing desk converters, though they do offer manual and electric standing desks, as well as mats, monitor arms, and other accessories. We have found them to be innovative in designing desks that meet the needs of consumers, including selling their products for very reasonable prices and not skimping on quality.
  • iMovR - we feel that of all of the standing desk companies, iMovR is the one of the most innovative and forward-thinking and is a leader in ergonomic design. When you look at all of the most important features of a standing desk, converter, or treadmill desk, iMovR has often already done it. Some of the things we've seen from iMovR that we really like to include:
    • - The SteadyType keyboard with the option to adjust the angle for less strain on your wrists.
    • - iMovR CloudStation to upload your fitness data to the cloud (coming soon).
    • - Standing desks large enough to slide a treadmill to the side so you can sit, stand, or walk while working.
    • - Tons of customizations for their desks.
  • Fully - Formerly known as Ergo Depot, Fully manufactures our overall favorite standing desk, the Jarvis. Although Fully does sell some brands that they don't produce, one of the things that stands out about their company is they are a certified B corporation, which meets rigorous standards of social and environmental performance, accountability, and transparency. Their products give off little to no VOCs (volatile organic compounds), which results in better indoor air quality. They also use sustainable products, such as making desktops out of bamboo or using recycled plastic in their chairs.
  • Xdesk - We see Xdesk as the Rolls Royce of the standing desk industry. Their desks are jaw-droppingly beautiful, stable, and powerful, but aren't cheap. Handmade in Texas, some of their models have some great innovations, such as the "Loft", which is a platform that holds your monitor and speakers, the "Nest", which gives you lots of storage space under the tabletop, and the "Artesian Bar", which has a permanent footrest attached to the frame. We're hoping to see some of this innovation be produced by other standing desk companies at a lower price.
  • Human Solution - The producer of the highly-rated UPLIFT, Human Solution offers one of the widest ranges of ergonomic products that you'll find anywhere, including standing desks, chairs, treadmill desks, mats, keyboard trays, mice, chair accessories, CPU holders, monitor arms, privacy panels and acoustics, desk edge protectors, corner sleeves, task lights, wire management and desk organization, footrests, laptop products, headsets, and even Mac-compatible products!
  • Flexispot - A relative newcomer to space, they offer standing desks, converters, desk bikes, as well as standing desk accessories. So far, we are impressed with their ability to offer high-quality products for a low price and offering great customer service.
  • ApexDesk - Also a relative newcomer to the industry, ApexDesk focuses mainly on selling quality full standing desks in a variety of surfaces, frame colors, and sizes. We have had great experiences with their products, especially their Elite Series desk which offers incredible value for a large standing desk. ApexDesk also sells standing desk converters and other office furniture.

Standing Desk Market to Double by 2025

A study published by Credence Research forecasted that the standing desk market will double in size by 2025. This is largely driven by the aggressive adoption of desk converters and electric standing desks. Research shows that reducing the amount of time sitting can cut your chances of cancer, type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and back pain. That doesn't mean that we should stand all day, but it does mean that we should find ways to move actively throughout the day. Using adjustable height desks is one of the easiest ways to break up long periods of slouching.

Corporations have been the leaders in the overall market growth for the past few years. While there is continued growth forecasted there, residential, educational, healthcare, manufacturing, and other business areas are all likely increasing as well. Smaller businesses and residences will be increasing demand because of greater awareness of ergonomic furniture benefits and an overall decreased cost offered by many manufacturers. Businesses large and small are beginning to offer standing desks and even walking desks for their employees. As a result, the amount of manufacturers is growing, which will hopefully lead to competitive prices for consumers.

Final Thoughts

Choosing a standing desk doesn't have to be difficult. The standing desk market has evolved a lot in the last few years with higher quality desks for lower prices. For most people, the health and productivity benefits outweigh the cost. Not to mention that standing desks are often beautiful pieces of furniture.

Before buying your desk, measure your space to see how much room you have for your new desk. Also look at your current desk, could you use more desktop space? If so, and if you don't have room for a larger desk, you might consider rearranging the furniture a little or storing items on your desk in a cabinet.

If you're not ready for a new standing desk, another option is to convert your current desk into a standing desk with a standing desk converter. And if you're ready to fully commit to your new standing desk, you'll want to consider a good standing desk mat to reduce fatigue, and a stool or chair to supplement standing.