Affordable Standing Tips and Tricks to get off the Couch by Chloe Adler

hunched overLet’s welcome back monthly columnist Chloe Adler as she shares with us “Affordable Standing Tips and Tricks to get off the Couch!” Enjoy!


As writers we may be sitting too much. We know there are options but we can’t quite make the leap. We hear about standing and writing but can’t afford a standing desk. We hear about the great standing treadmill. The balance board. They all sound fantastic but we either 1. Can’t get ourselves off the couch or 2. Look at the daunting price tags for every item or the space they would take up in our tiny house.

couch and computerFirst – I want to mention the downfalls of sitting. There’s an entire book you can read about it in depth here. But from my personal perspective, and I do sport a masters degree in health, it’s not good for our bodies. We were not made to be sedentary, no matter how much our psyche tells us we are. My recent experience from sitting too much in just one sitting was that I developed sciatica – AGAIN. Anyone who’s had sciatica knows that it’s extremely painful all the time.

Now I’d like to offer you some solutions.

This is what I do. If I’m working from home I move between standing, sitting on my couch and sitting on an exercise ball. I am lucky enough to have one of those bars between my kitchen and living room so I move the chair aside and I stand there. If you stand, I recommend having something cushy under your feet. I use a folded up yoga mat. You can also buy a reasonably priced “anti fatigue”, “kitchen mat” or “cushioned mat” from Amazon. I found one a few years ago at Ross. If you have carpet it’s probably fine but I have wood floors.

My favorite “exercise ball” for sitting is “Gaiam”. I got the 65cm, which is great for my height, I’m 5’ 1”. If you’re 4’ 10” you may consider the 55cm one and if you’re over 5’ 6”, consider the 75cm one. These are the cheapest ones I could find but more important they are the best quality. I’ve tried a few different brands.

I use the exercise ball to work on my laptop at the coffee table and at my desk. It’s the perfect height so I can sit up straight and not hunch over. The trick to sitting on the ball is to spread your legs open wide, sit up straight and engage your core to hold you there. It’s all about balancing and moving/swaying a little. This is really good for your body.

Another option is a balance board for standing. This is the one that’s most reasonably priced but this is my favorite one (very pricey). I researched a lot of them HOWEVER I have not personally used one, yet.

Standing DeskAt work I use a portable “desk” on top of my regular work desk for standing. I can’t say enough about this portable desk. I love it! The thing about this one is that the price on Amazon changes a lot between $19.99 and $36. Also the prices of the different colors change a lot. I got mine for $20 something but last week my office mate got the same one for $19.99. When I purchased mine, the red one was cheapest so I got that one. Be sure to get the one with vents on the bottom. You may not need to plug the fan in (I never have) but the vents keep your laptop from overheating.

Lastly you can build your own treadmill desk or your own balance board!

There are items you can buy that are expensive, those are easy to find! So if you have the budget, here are two standing desks.

  1. ThermoDesk Elite stand up desk – This one is used and highly recommended by a client of mine but it’s not cheap! The cool thing about it though is you can easily put a treadmill underneath it.
  2. Standing Desk – this one is more reasonably priced.

More resources for building your own:

  1. Building your own treadmill desk
  2. Building your own standing desk

Now, get off the couch and out of your chair! You have options!



Raina Schell, Chloe AdlerChloe Adler can often be found singing karaoke musical theme songs in dive bars. Her favorite tracks are from Evita and The Rocky Horror Picture Show. After thoroughly cleaning her rock collection, Chloe is now ready for prime time.

In the past two years Chloe has written four books and is working on the next two. She is most proud of her Distant Edge Romance Series. Sadie’s Mortal Desire just placed third in the “On the Far Side” Contest.

The one thing that’s remained constant in the past several years is that now Chloe cannot stop writing. In her five minutes of “free time” she’s performing tricks ala aerial circus arts, cuddling with her adorable dog and cooking.

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