The Best Affordable Standing Desks Of 2023 To Stay Healthy While You Work
Let's face it, there's often no way around spending extended time at our desks. Fortunately, there are ways to stay on your deadlines while still avoiding the negative effects of sitting. Whether you've been looking for a more ergonomic workstation setup or just want to try something new, the best affordable standing desks can be a major benefit to your health.
It's no secret that sitting isn't great for your health. Sedentary lifestyles have been linked to an increased risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and a shorter life span1. On the bright side, using a standing desk helps reduce these risks and can even positively affect your mood and energy levels and help reduce upper back and neck pain2. Using a standing desk has also been linked to increased productivity. A recent study even showed standing desks to have positive effects on blood sugar3.
All this in mind, a standing desk can absolutely be a worthwhile investment in your health—but you may not want to spend an arm and a leg on your workstation. Below, find our top picks for the best affordable standing desks, along with expert-backed tips on how to choose the right one for your space.
The best affordable standing desks:
The best affordable standing desks:
How to choose.
Choosing the right standing desk may be especially beneficial to those who suffer from back pain, as standing desks can help alleviate pain associated with sitting for long periods4. "Standing desks help to reduce compression in the lumbar spine because sitting has more compression than standing," points out Karena Wu, P.T., DPT, and owner of ActiveCare Physical Therapy. She adds that using a standing desk can increase heart rate, circulation, and energy levels, as standing requires more energy than sitting.
When deciding on the right standing desk for you, Lalitha McSorley, CPT and lead physical therapist at Brentwood Physiotherapy, shares that you must first take into consideration important factors, such as adjustability and ergonomic design. "Adjustability is especially key, as the user will need to be able to set the height of their desk in order for it to be comfortable and healthy for them," she explains. Because of this, she advises looking for desks with multiple levels of adjustment that can accommodate a range of heights and body types.
Furthermore, she adds that you should be aware of any ergonomic features the desk offers, such as adequate space for a keyboard tray, monitor arms, and footrests. This will help you find the correct posture while you work. You should also consider how much weight capacity your standing desk will need, as the maximum weight capacity for each desk varies.
Wu points out that deciding on what shoes to wear while using your standing desk is also important. "You can experience foot pain from the pressure now being focused into the feet," she explains. "If you're static standing, or not moving, then there is also a risk of increased swelling in the feet and ankles." Because of this, she advises wearing comfortable, well-cushioned shoes while using a standing desk and avoiding high heels.
How we picked:
We kept expert insight in mind as we decided which standing desks to include and also highlighted any expert brand recommendations.
We focused on affordable high-quality standing desks that give you the most bang for your buck.
We sifted through hundreds of reviews to help get a better picture of people's experiences. These reviews also helped us pinpoint any potential cons we should be aware of.
We called attention to special features of each product, to help you better decide which model is best for your needs.
Our picks for the best affordable standing desks:
Best affordable: SHW 55-inch Adjustable Desk
- Large desktop area
- Comes with cable management clamps and headphone hook
- Assembly requires minimal hardware
- Motor may seem noisy to some
On the most affordable end of the spectrum, this desk is made from engineered wood and high-grade industrial steel—and it’s incredibly sturdy. The height can be adjusted from 28 to 45 inches with just the press of a button, with the option to save height settings for future use.
Each desk comes with a grommet and four cable management clips to reduce clutter, and a screw-in leveling guide to keep your desk balanced. Desktops are available in sizes ranging from 40 to 55 inches, depending on how big of a space you’re working with. What’s more, expert assembly is offered for an additional cost (although the desk is pretty straightforward to put together on your own).
This desk has a 4.6 out of 5-star overall rating and over 17,000 total ratings on Amazon. Customers tend to call out the high quality and extensive features for a low price point. One writes, “This desk has very good quality, better than I expected. I work at home, so I used to sit on a chair almost 8 hours a day before. After getting this desk, I stand to work for half of the time. It makes my back feel so much better than before. Highly recommended! Good quality, good looking, easy to use!”.
However, one customer says the motor can sometimes sound “clunky,” and another shares that they wish this desk had beveled edges for a more comfortable user experience.
Best with storage: Flexispot Standing Desk
- Embedded drawer
- Very quick assembly
- 3 USB charging ports included
- Some customers have run into issues with the charging ports
This desk features a convenient (and roomy!) drawer that can be used to store work supplies. A streamlined keypad allows you to raise or lower the desk with just the tap of a button, with the option to save four preset heights. Even better, the desk includes a useful child lock button and anti-collision technology.
One of the easiest assembly processes of the bunch, this desk only takes about 15 minutes to put together. Once assembled, three integrated USB ports can be used for charging your devices—although it is important to note that laptop charging is not supported, and charging may pause briefly during height adjustments. Height adjustments range from 28.3 to 47.6 inches, and the width is not adjustable.
With an overall 4.6 out of 5-star rating on Amazon, and over 1,400 total ratings, this standing desk is a favorite among people who are looking for a sturdy and spacious standing desk that doesn’t require much time or energy to assemble. One shares, “I absolutely love this desk. Along with my under desk treadmill, this is one of the best purchases I ever made. The desk was super easy to put together, I did so in 10-15 minutes and by myself. The charging ports are great, and the drawer is a nice addition to have. Buy it!”
One downside: this desk doesn’t have a great cable organization system. Some customers also state that they wish the USB ports were located on a different part of the desk for more convenience.
Best for small spaces: Siducal Mobile Stand Up Desk
- Extremely easy to move around the home
- Easy to assemble and 24 hour customer service available if you run into any issues
- Can be positioned 4 ways
- Not motorized
Looking for an affordable standing desk that takes up minimal space? Both compact and easy to move, this is a great choice for those with smaller living spaces. The desk’s platform height can be adjusted between 27.5 and 45.3 inches, meaning this desk can be used while sitting or standing. It features dual tabletops, with one of the desktops offering a 45-degree flip. This can especially come in handy when reading or taking notes.
What’s more, this standing desk can be positioned four ways, allowing for a more comfortable, tailored experience. Customers say assembly is easy and 24-hour customer service is available if you come across any issues. The desk is lightweight, weighing just 21 pounds.
Reviewers say this desk helps make their workspace comfortable and mobile. One writes, “This is exactly what I was looking for. It’s simple but functional. Love that it has wheels so that it can be easily stored in the corner of my room when I’m done working. Very easy to put together.” Another notes, “Very easy to set up and it came with everything I needed to set it up alone. I’m 5’2 and it adjusts to the exact height I need to comfortably stand up or sit down.”
A few people do point out that in order to change the height of the desk you must adjust four knobs manually. If you’d prefer a more seamless adjustment, you’ll likely want a motorized option.
Best wood top: Branch Standing Desk
- Programmable settings
- Stain-resistant tabletop
- High quality construction
- Heavy legs
- Cable organization stickers are not very durable
This popular standing desk by Branch is a great choice for those looking for a more design-forward workstation. Featuring a stain-resistant top, it has a three-stage column base with leveling feet to help with stability. Even better, this desk has a lift range of 25 to 52 inches, and its height can be controlled via an easy-to-use handset. Quiet dual low-decibel motors make each lift a smooth one, and a useful cable grommet helps streamline cords.
Customers can expect free and fast shipping with each order, and assembly typically takes less than an hour. This desk currently offers four different table top options, including woodgrain and walnut, and two leg color options. A larger 60-inch by 30-inch desktop is available for those who need more workspace.
Our commerce editor can attest to how easy this desk is to assemble, but notes that you’ll likely want an extra set of hands to manage the larger pieces. “The legs are particularly heavy, and the desk itself is fairly large,” says Carleigh Ferrante, commerce editor at mindbodygreen. “It’s incredibly sturdy, though. I can tell this will be a part of my workstation for years to come. Not only do I feel healthier spending less time sitting, but I am experiencing way less back and neck pain than when I was hunched over a desk all day. I love the option to save my settings, too. With the quick click of a button, I can be sitting or standing with my desk at perfect height.
Best electric: Jarvis Bamboo Standing Desk
- Highly customizable
- High lifting capacity
- Desktop made of sustainable materials
- Handset can be difficult to install
Another brand recommended by McSorley, Jarvis crafts high-quality standing desks that people rave about. These desks not only are designed with ergonomics in mind, but also incorporate eco-friendly materials. This electric model is made with sustainably-grown bamboo that is free from pesticides. It can support up to 350 pounds and offers three desk frame height options: two-stage (best for people 5’10” to 6’9”), three-stage (best for people 5’4” to 5'7”), and three-stage low (best for people 4’9” to 5’11”).
Each desk comes with either an up/down toggle handset, or an upgraded OLED touch handset that includes a height indicator display. In either case, the desk’s height can easily be raised or lowered with just the touch of a button. This desk also offers a great wire management solution, allowing you to keep your wires and power cords better organized as you work.
Users applaud this desk, saying it’s quiet, sturdy, and easy to assemble. One reviewer writes, “Very happy with the quality of all the components, especially the bamboo desktop. I am a very satisfied customer thus far. The desk operates smoothly and looks great.” A few customers mention some issues with installing the touchscreen handset.
Best adjustable: Uplift V2 Standing Desk
- Highly customizable
- Quick and easy assembly
- Cable management system can get a bit messy
This brand comes recommended by McSorley. This motorized model is controlled using a keypad, and is extremely customizable. For $89 more, you can choose to add a motorized foot pad if you’d prefer to adjust the desk that way. The desk is available in 29 colorways, with multiple desktop size options, four frame colors, and the option to add wheels for easy movement within your space.
Every purchase includes a handy wire management tray, 10 cable mount ties, and two anchor plates that can be used to install under-desk accessories. Choose from three free add-ons, such as a foot hammock, standing desk mat, rocker board, organizer, or LED lamp. The desk comes with two grommet covers, which you can upgrade to power or storage grommets for an additional charge. Similarly, the keypad can be upgraded to an advanced display.
This desk also features a top-notch anti-collision system which helps detect resistance and stop desk motion in the blink of an eye. This may be especially helpful for those with small children or pets. What’s more, this desk can be connected to the brand’s app where you can track calories and send reminders for when to switch from sitting to standing. Adjustments to the desk’s height (from 25.3 to 50.9 inches) can also be made through the app.
With nearly 15,000 reviews on the brand’s website, this desk maintains a 4.9 overall rating. Customers say it’s durable and an “absolute gamechanger.” Others praise the ease of assembly and the quality for this price point. Bare in mind, a couple people point out that some under-desk add-ons, such as the keyboard tray and foot hammock, can feel bulky. Additionally, while grommets are included, a few reviewers say the wires can get messy.
Is it worth buying a standing desk?
If you use it, a standing desk can be a great investment. It can help you cut back on how much time you spend sitting and subsequently have positive effects on your health.
How many hours should you stand at a standing desk?
McSorley says how long someone should stand at a standing desk depends on the individual. "Generally, I'd recommend that users take short breaks every 30 minutes or so to give their body a chance to rest and move around," she explains. Taking regular breaks, either by sitting or walking around, can help reduce strain on your body while also avoiding any potential health risks that may be associated with prolonged standing, per McSorley.
What is a good price for a standing desk?
Standing desks vary greatly in price. If you're interested in investing in a standing desk, make sure to choose a high-quality option that not only has your desired features but is also within your budget.
If you put it to good use, a standing desk can help you optimize your health by limiting your time spent sitting and can have positive effects on your posture and help alleviate pain. If you're looking for additional ways to incorporate more movement into your everyday life, be sure to check out our tips on how to reduce the negative effects of sitting and easy ways you can cut back the time you spend sitting still. And when you are sitting, make sure you're choosing the right office chair.