When it comes to the design of the human body, you can argue back and forth quite a bit about what the body is engineered to do optimally and what it is not ( that is the case in the area of human nutrition for example). One area where there is very little controversy is the area of sitting. The human body is clearly not engineered to sit for very long. Not just for the musculoskeletal system, but also for the cardiovascular system and the central nervous system. A while back I uploaded to the blog a longitudinal study on the mortality rate associated with the number of hours the average adult spent sitting during their day.  The results were not pretty. 4 hours of total sitting seemed to be the upper end of what the body could take before the health outcomes fell off a cliff. Back pain was the least of their problems in the end, while rates of strokes and dementia went up steeply.

Thankfully, furniture design has come to the rescue of the majority of the US adults who derive an income from working full time at a desk/phone/computer.  And the good news is that there is a big range of retrofit options at a variety of price points. Some are as simple as a desk stand to perch a laptop. Intermediate options include a sit-stand telescoping platform that sits on your desk but does not require any hardwired installation. The upper echelon of sit stand workstations can hold multiple monitors and electrically adjustable height. 

The HR policies about employees requesting and receiving adjustable workstations still vary a lot.  Some will do it simply upon employee request for accommodations, while other still request cumbersome medical notes and a lot of paperwork. Most employers do have a policy for that particular situation, and the HR department is the place to contact.

 For an idea of what may be available out there, this article is a good starting point. As you begin using a sit stand station, increase your standing time gradually, and aim for a total of no more than 4 hours of sitting per day. Also remember that you will need to bring with you shoes that are compatible with standing.