Kneeling chairs v standing desks (with comparison table)


In a world where sitting syndrome is a growing challenge, you may be wondering what the best options are to get you out of your static posture. Here you’ll find an extensive comparison of kneeling chairs v standing desks and which one is more suited to you.

Are standing desks a good idea
Are standing desks a good idea

In this article, I highlight 20 critical differences between kneeling chairs and standing desks so that after reading it, you’ll be filled with complete confidence that you can make an informed decision that you’ll choose the best option for you.

Also, included is a kneeling chairs v standing desks comparison cheat sheet that you can use to easily compare the two options within seconds!

While both options are excellent feats of engineering to help promote active setting, they are extremely different send choosing the wrong one could be a complete waste of time, money and your efforts.

So, read on to narrow down your selection and learn which one will be best suited to you.

Kneeling chairs v standing desks - WorkFit Electric Sit-Stand Desk man standing

Did you know? Kneeling chairs offer less support to your back and core region, which results in these muscles being engaged more than when using standard office chairs. Source

Should I choose a standing desk or a kneeling chair?

A standing desk is generally a more suitable option for those with sufficient space to accommodate a desk, those with a larger budget, if you’re not looking for a portable option and if you intend to use the standing desk throughout the day. Kneeling chairs tend to be chosen by people experiencing back pain as the kneeling posture enables the user to alleviate pressure from their back while achieving a more upright posture. That said, kneeling chairs are suitable for most people, especially those with restricted space limitations, people with a lower budget who also desire it to be portable and for short periods of use.

Kneeling chairs v standing desks comparison table

Feature

Kneeling chair

Standing desk

Cost

$99 – $1999

$199.99 – $1799

Delivery costs

Low

Medium – high

Range of positions

Kneeling, minor kneeling posture adjustments

Standing, sitting, leaning

Space requirements (L X W X H)

Average min to max sizes

(25.9” x 19” x 6.6”) –

(32.7” x 19.7” x 20.1”)

(36” x 26.5” x 46.75) –

(58” x 29” x 49”)

Size

Small – medium

Large

Adjustable heights

Yes (except for rocker chairs)

Yes

Suitable for heights

4’ 8” – 6’ 3”

5’ 0” – 6’ 5”

Weight capacity

Up to 265 lbs

45 – 220 lbs

Weight

16 – 29 lbs

77.2 – 126.10 lbs

Noise

Likely < 40dB

20 – 60 dB

Material

Wood, metal, steel, plastic, fabric, foam, leather

Wood, metal, steel, plastic

Variety of designs

Yes

Limited

Duration of use

Short durations

All day

Moveability of user

Easy to move on chair with wheels

Easy to move position while standing

Portability of unit

Portable

Not portable

Environment

Office, table, sewing station, worktop

Office, study

Assembly

Minimal

Usually by technicians

Replacement parts

No

Yes, motor

Return policy

30 days

30 days

Warranty

1 – 7 years +

1 – 10 years +

Cost

In terms of budget, kneeling chairs work out cheaper, especially on the lower end of the budget spectrum. The cheapest kneeling chair that is available came in at $99.

Kneeling chairs range in price from $99 – $1999 dollars. In comparison, the cheapest standing desks available range from $199.99 dollars – $1799 dollars.

At the high-end side of the cost spectrum, that equates to a mere $100 difference between the two. It is rather astonishing to see that the most expensive standing desk and kneeling chair are not far off each other in terms of price.

Fortunately, mid-range kneeling chairs or standing desk should be more than effective at meeting your needs.

It would be advisable to avoid purchasing the cheapest standing desks or kneeling chair you can find on the market as they tend to feature poor quality and design.

Delivery costs

Most kneeling chairs are relatively compact and can be collected by yourself. If you are purchasing kneeling chairs online, since they are relatively lightweight, cost will be lower than that of a standing desk. However, there are larger kneeling chairs with backrests which can weigh as much as 29 lbs. and are relatively large in dimensions.

For this reason, the cost of delivery is likely to increase. Also, unless it comes flat pack (which many options fortunately do) or you have the likes of a van, it’s unlikely that you’ll be able to collect it yourself.

Even if it is flat pack, the size of the box may not easily fit in your car. Fortunately, the shipping dimensions are readily available on most websites. So, if you prefer to collect it by car, grab your measuring tape and you can estimate whether it’ll fit in your car or not.

Standing desks almost always need to be delivered by a courier or shipping company. Standing desks weigh significantly more than kneeling chairs, with some of them weighing as much as 126.1 lbs. they are also significantly larger than kneeling chairs.

Tip: Some companies offer free shipping which will reduce the overall cost by a sizable amount.

Range of positions

Kneeling chairs are relatively limited in the number of positions that you can adopt
while you are sitting on them. The type of positions include:

1. Kneeling with both legs on the knee pads

2. Kneeling with one leg on the knee pad and the other leg resting on the floor

3. Resting both feet on the knee pads

With standing desks, there is a greater degree of positions that you can adopt since you can alternate between:

1. Standing at the desk

2. Sitting at the desk

3. Leaning on the desk

4. Perching on a standing desk chair

5. Pivoting on a standing desk chair

6. Leaning on a standing desk chair

Furthermore, if you buy both a kneeling chair AND a standing desk, you can kneel at the desk too for the best of both worlds!

Tip: Kneeling chairs can be used at standing desks as part of an active posture regime.

Space requirements

When you compare the dimensions of a kneeling chair to a standing desk, there’s no denying that space requirements for a kneeling chair are significantly less than a sit-stand desk.

A kneeling chair can easily be positioned in almost any size room.

You can place it beside a table, desk or in a room where you plan to use it. Kneeling chairs tend to range between 25.9” x 19” x 6.6” – 32.7” x 19.7” x 20.1” in dimensions.

With a standing desk, a section of a room will be required to fit the table into. The average dimensions range from minimum to maximum of 36” x 26.5” x 46.75 – 58” x 29” x 49”.

Good practice (and smartypants intuition) would be to measure out the area where you plan to position the standing desk and compare this with the dimensions of the desk that you intend to purchase.

Don’t forget to consider the height requirements as well.

Tip: Since the standing desk is height adjustable, there should be no shelving or objects in the area that could make contact with the standing desk at its highest and lowest positions.

Kneeling chairs v standing desks - Fully Balans Kneeling Chair

Size

Kneeling chairs vary in size depending on the type of kneeling chair that you choose.

An X frame kneeling chair is one of the smallest chair styles available; generally, they measure an average of 25.9” x 19” x 6.6” in dimensions.

The rocker chair tends to be the next smallest kneeling chair. Backrest kneeling chairs are significantly larger again and measure an average of 32.7” x 19.7” x 20.1”.

If space is tight in a room, the x-frame kneeling chair the best option.

Kneeling chairs are clearly much smaller than the footprint of a standing desk.

However, what you might not know is that standing desks tend to have a larger footprint than that of a standard office desk.

So, if you are considering replacing your current office desk with a standing desk, pay attention to the dimensions as they are likely to be larger than your existing setup.

The smallest size standing desk that I have come across to date measured in at 36” x 26.5” x 46.75” while the largest one that I have come across is 58” x 29” x 49” in size.

Adjustable heights

Regardless of what piece of furniture that you purchase, it should be able to accommodate your height. This is made much easier when the item features adjustable heights.

The kneeling chair offers adjustable heights with most types of kneeling chairs. The main exception to this is the rocker chair which has fixed seat height and knee pad height.

Additionally, the dimensions between the seat and the knee pads are also fixed. Fortunately, they offer a decent range of heights that they can accommodate.

The fundamental reason for buying a standing desk is that it is height adjustable. Let’s delve into what size people these are appropriate for in the next paragraph.

Suitable for heights

Kneeling chairs have been claimed to accommodate heights ranging from 4’ 8” – 6’ 3”. Kneeling chairs often don’t tend to cater to taller users. If the height of the chair is not adjustable, this should be queried with the manufacturer to ensure that it can accommodate your stature.

Particular care should be taken with the rocker chairs since these are not height adjustable. Fortunately, rocker chairs, can accommodate a range of heights. For instance, the Sleekform rocker chair claims to be able to cater for heights ranging from 5’2″-6’6″.

The heights that can be accommodated by standing desks range from 5’ 0” – 6’ 5”. This will vary in terms of the range of heights that each desk can respectively achieve; some desks have a small range of height while others offer a larger height adjustability. Consequently, this is a critical factor what will determine what heights of people that will be suited to it.

So, while standing desks tend to be suitable for the average heights of people, it should never be taken for granted that this is the case.

Extra attention should be taken for people who are shorter and on the taller end of the height spectrum, since standing desks and kneeling chairs may not achieve a height range suited to their posture.

Weight capacity

Kneeling chairs have an average weight capacity of 250 lbs. As a result, kneeling chairs don’t tend to be suitable for heavier users or taller users. However, I have found kneeling chairs which can accommodate up to 265 pounds.

The weight capacity of standing desks ranges from 45 to 220 lbs.

While the weight of the user is not a concern for standing desks, the weight of the equipment most certainly is. Additionally, if you intend to or have a habit of leaning on your desk, or placing other objects on the desk, this should be factored into the weight capacity of standing desks.

Weight

The weight of kneeling chairs ranges between 16 – 29 lbs. X-frame kneeling chairs tend to weigh the least, this is followed by rocker chairs and than kneeling chairs which feature back supports or additional accessories. The weight of a kneeling chair will influence the weight capacity of the product. Their lightweight nature makes them relatively easy to move.

Standing desks weigh in the range of 77.2 – 126.10 lbs. Since the weight of standing desks is so substantial, they are not portable items of furniture. Furthermore, since they won’t be moved frequently, from a manual handling perspective, it would be a non-routine risk.

Ease of assembly and the weight capacity of the sit-stand desk will be affected by the overall weight of the standing desk.

Noise

Kneeling chairs should be relatively quiet and are no different to standard chairs in terms of noise. The only noise is that one could anticipate is if you are wheeling the kneeling chair from one area to another, moving as you sit on it or if the kneeling chair begins to form creaking noises.

Most standing desks range between 20 to 60 dB.

Since standing desks are available in three primary types, the noise range can vary based on the type of standing desk that you choose.

The average noise level generated by an electric standing desk is 50 dB. If you work in a quiet office shared with others or you are conscious of making a clatter at noise sensitive times, this could pose a slight issue.

Kneeling chairs v standing desks - Standing desk noise

Material

Kneeling chairs are primarily produced from either wood or steel and feature foam cushioning on the seats and knee pads; the covering tends to be fabric, leather or PU.

Standing desk legs tend to be made from alloy steel or metal. The worktop is usually made from various types of wood, including laminated wood, MDF and hardwood.

Variety of designs

Kneeling chairs are primarily available in the below formats which are listed in order of most popular types of kneeling chairs on the market:

  • X-frame kneeling chair
  • Rocker kneeling chair
  • Backrest kneeling
  • Saddle kneeling Chair

Standing desks are limited in their physical shape, however there are different types of standing desks based on how they are operated:

  • Electric standing desks
  • Pneumatic standing desks
  • Manual standing desks

In addition to choosing the way the standing desk is operated, you can also choose the frame, desk height, size of the worktop, material and laminate effect of the worktop (e.g., color).

Duration of use

Kneeling chairs are designed with short-term use in mind. That said, if a user wishes to extend the duration of time that they use the kneeling chair, backrests can be a means of allowing the body to rest by allowing you to lean against it.

However, a preferable method is to physically get up from the kneeling chair.

Standing desk can be used all day, but it is advised that they are used as part of an active posture regime, i.e., not adopting one posture for the whole day without breaks.

This could mean alternating between sitting and standing postures throughout the day.

Tip: Kneeling chairs can be used in conjunction with standing desks as part of a method to encourage active postures and reduce the risk of “sitting disease”.

Moveability of user

Movability here refers to how much the person can adjust their posture and positioning while using the kneeling chair or standing desk.

The style of kneeling chair will ultimately be influential in determining how much the user can move. For instance, with the X-frame kneeling chair, if it has no castors, you either can’t move very easily or you run the risk of damaging your floor by dragging the chair to the desired position.

Rocker kneeling chairs, backrest kneeling chairs and saddle kneeling chairs with a curved base allow some degree of swaying side-to-side and forwards, however, again this can be at the risk of a damaged floor if you don’t have anti-scratch strips underneath the legs.

If the kneeling chair has castors on the bottom (most commonly available in the X-frame and backrest kneeling chairs), you can more easily move yourself around.

This comes in extremely useful if you want to obtain an object that’s slightly out of your current reach. It also enables you to position yourself closer to the desk without having to get up off the chair, adjusting the position of the chair and than sit back down (and possibly repeating this multiple times until you achieve the perfect position).

On a positive note, that would help alleviate a static posture!

With standing desks, if you are in a standing posture, it’s extremely easy to alternate your posture or move to reach objects. Additionally, if you use a standard office chair with wheels, you can wheel yourself in endless positions to reach your desired object or most comfortable position.

Portability of unit

The portability of an object often hinges on the weight of it. Kneeling chairs range from 16 – 29 lbs in weight, which makes them relatively lightweight.
The larger kneeling chairs, such as the backrest kneeling chairs are generally on the heavier side, which makes them more difficult to move.

In addition to weight, the size of the kneeling chair dictates how easily it can be moved.

X-frame kneeling chairs are usually the smallest and are easily moved, especially if they have wheels.

This is followed by rocker and saddle kneeling chairs. Backrest kneeling chairs can be moved, but it may require a 2-person lift if there are no wheels on the bottom. Furthermore, since they consume a larger footprint, they’re not a piece of furniture that you can easily pop in the back of the car or move up and down the stairs.

Standing desks range from 77.2 – 126.10 lbs in weight, so they are in no way light, nor are they small in footprint; therefore, standing desks are not suitable for being moved frequently.

Environment

Kneeling chairs are versatile insofar as where they can be used.

  • Office desk
  • Kitchen table
  • Study desk
  • Sewing station
  • Worktop bench
  • Living room

Standing desks are more restrictive regarding where they can be used and positioned. This is due to factors including the range of uses, portability and their large size. Standing desks are generally used in:

  • Offices
  • Study rooms
  • Workshops
Kneeling chairs v standing desks - Thatsit Balans by Varier kneeling chair office

Assembly

Many kneeling chairs come in flat packs meaning that you need to grab your toolkit and assemble it yourself or else find a chair that comes ready-built.

Based on reviews of consumers who assembled them, you should set aside approximately 30 minutes for this. Fortunately, some of the more established manufacturers provide video tutorials to walk you through the process.

Plus, if it’s a popular chair brand, there’s likely to be a video on YouTube demonstrating how to assemble it.

Standing desks generally require assembly by a technician, which typically involves them calling to the area, dismantling your current desk, assembling your new standing desk and connecting it to the power source.

There may also be a charge for providing this service if it’s not already incorporated into the overall cost of the sit-stand desk.

Some standing desks can be assembled by yourself, with the aid of a helper to lift the work surface into place. You’ll also need some tools or alternatively (and my preferred option), you can talk to Bob the Builder (or Wendy) and leave it in their capable hands!

Obviously, the amount of time it will take to assemble will depend on how familiar you are with assembling furniture, the quality of the instruction and any extra time involved in troubleshooting.

Some users are able to build their standing desk within 15 – 35 minutes, however, it could take longer if you are less familiar with the process.

Replacement parts

More reputable furniture manufacturers, such as Varier, tend to have some components available as replacement parts, such as castors, cushions and backrest frames.

Similarly, with standing desks, the more popular the brand, the more likely it is that replacement parts are available. As well as that, if you buy a quality product as opposed to a cheap chair or desk, it’s more probable that spare parts will be available.

Motors are an important replacement part in electric standing desks since they are generally the component that has the shortest lifespan. Other components that you can buy as spares include legs, brackets and crossbars.

Return policy

Kneeling chairs and standing desks tend to offer a 30-day return policy.

This is important if you are a first-time user of these products and you’re unsure as to whether you will enjoy the experience of using them.

That said, you ought to pay attention to the cost for returning the unwanted item as it’s likely that you will have to bear this cost.

Warranty

You should expect at least a minimum of 1 year warranty with a kneeling chair and a standing desk. Extra caution should be taken with regards to whether the warranty is broken down into different lengths for various components.

For instance, a standing desk may offer a 3-year warranty on the standing desk, but the motor may only feature a 1-year warranty.

Conclusion

While both are excellent options, it often boils down to cost, space, duration of use and purpose when choosing between a standing desk and a kneeling chair. Which one would you choose?

If you want further in-depth information on choosing a kneeling chair, and want to find out the 4 critical factors that will determine whether the kneeling chair you choose is even suitable, than this article will certainly be a game changer: How to choose a kneeling chair? 21 watch outs

I’d personally opt for a standing desk, as it allows more opportunities to change my posture and I could pair it with a kneeling chair (or any chair for that matter) further down the road if I so wished. The one I currently have my eye on is this thrifty and nifty Verve Standing Desk since it has a lifetime guarantee.

My aim with this website is to help you on all matters related to your home office and your work area. With that in mind, if you have any questions or comments on the above, please drop them in the box below. I’d love to hear them!

Sources

https://www.fully.com/en-eu/standing-desks/small-spaces/remi-standing-desk.html

https://www.ergotron.com/en-us/products/product-details/98-354#?color=black

Sharon

With years of both professional and first-hand experience in office equipment and work settings, I now want to help you avoid making mistakes that countless others do. Whether you're studying or working from home, this site will help you create the ultimate haven for working safely, comfortably and productively in!

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