A desk that helps with active working sounds like a paradox but that is what the Yo-Yo Desk® allows you to do. It is an innovative intervention that allows for a half-way solution between having to use a desk for long hours and helping to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

I have spent two weeks reviewing a Yo-Yo Desk® MINI  which was supplied by Sit-Stand.Com® and am delighted with the lifestyle changes that it has enabled me to make. Much of what I do involves sitting at a desk. I am studying for a postgraduate qualification, I blog and I have a day job. For most of the working week I am sitting at desks for hours at a time and, often, late into the night. Much as I enjoy blogging, studying and working I need to stay active because I suffer from Restless Legs Syndrome and am diabetic.

It is imperative for me to keep active which is why I was delighted to review the Yo-Yo Desk® MINI . Quite simply, the Yo-Yo Desk®  is a ‘standing’ desk riser that sits on top of your workspace, with the ability to simply adjust its height so you can work sitting or standing. It is easy to set up and needs to be placed on a strong sturdy surface to be used at standing height. There are various settings for the user to get it to a height that is suited to them.


Do be aware that this is not a portable standing desk product. It is perfect if you have a home office or dedicated workspace, but is not the standing desk for you if you need to be moving it from place to place. The Sit-Stand.Com® website gives full details of weight and dimensions of the Yo-Yo Desk®, which comes in a variety of sizes to suit all needs.

The health benefits to using the Yo-Yo Desk® are numerous. I have felt more inclined to stretch my back every hour or so and have less niggles and discomfort. I realise that standing for a long time will not suit people who suffer from serious back problems. Standing time will have to be adjusted accordingly in these circumstances.

When you work from a standing position, it is advised to use an active standing product such as the Yo-Yo Mat®. It’s a supportive anti-fatigue mat that encourages incremental movements when you are standing, reduces fatigue on your joints and the aching feet you can suffer from standing on a hard surface. Experts recommend it.

Sufferers of Restless Leg Syndrome move their legs frequently to stay comfortable. It is an affliction that can strike at any time and mostly at night. Over the years I have often wished for a standing desk of some sort that would enable me to keep working while doing ridiculous things like jumping up and down or kicking my legs around. When these restless moments strike at 2am, or whatever hour of the early morning, the tension between having to be quiet so as not to disturb the whole household and having to be active is hard to say the least. Instead, I have been able to confine myself to one room in my home, lights switched on with legs moving while still working on my computer to keep my mind occupied.

My fitness level has gone up too since working at my standing desk which helps with managing Diabetes Type 2. Previously, I would get so tired at the end of the day that I was more likely to forego getting on my exercise bike. Standing, somehow, has made me more inclined to exercise. Perhaps I was far too lazy to get off the chair and exercise whereas the laterality from standing to exercising seems far less of an effort. A placebo effect perhaps but it works.

My Yo-Yo Desk® MINI is large enough to accommodate many books and my IT gadgets such as Tablet and phones. There is more than enough space for a laptop and writing material to be used at the same time. There is a tray upon which you can place a keyboard too. The mini desk comes in two colours – Black and White and in three sizes. I have a Black one which suits the décor of my home.

I would recommend a Yo-Yo Desk® as a way of combating long hours spent sitting whether this is at the office, at home or, as in my case, in both scenarios. It is affordably priced at just over £200 and can be directly purchased from Sit-Stand.com. 


Kirsty Harrower, 16, is my lovely niece. She loves watching Disney movies on a loop, belts out Little Mix songs on her Karaoke machine and is a dab hand at colouring and drawing. More than anything, Kirsty is a lovely little lady with barrels of personality and is a treasured member of the family.

So this is what that has happened to me this week. I ignored all the warning signs and ended up in an ambulance on Friday.

I started to feel abnormally cold at work and was falling asleep. This escalated into severe chills over the next two days which left me shivering uncontrollably. Turning the heating up to 80 degrees, plus sitting next to a portable heater with three layers of clothing did not help. I took myself off to the GP and was diagnosed with a kidney infection and given antibiotics.

However, my relief was short-lived. Only hours later my chills became much more severe. I thought I was going to collapse. The GP came out and declared that I was indeed in danger of collapsing and quite possibly hitting my head on something because my blood pressure was extremely low. He called an ambulance who told me upon arrival that they would only take me into hospital if I was deemed serious enough. After 10 minutes the Paramedics decided that they could not stabilise my vitals nor guarantee my safety so I was taken in.

If only I had heeded the warnings of my severe chills instead of putting it down to stress or overwork or a brewing cold.

At the hospital the blood technicians were unable to draw blood after 30 minutes of trying because, I was told, my body was severely dehydrated and my blood pressure was too low. “It’s like you don’t have any blood”, one technician told me. The consultant whom I was assigned to managed to get blood out of me some hours later after I had been administered some treatment.

Contrary to what people think severe chills are not just associated with kidney infections. In fact after a scan my kidneys were declared clear. I have a viral infection instead. I have lost a stone in 5 days and this wasn’t the way that I had envisioned losing weight in the new year.

I have also learnt that water is not the best way to hydrate yourself, milk is the best option. I have switched to drinking Alpro Soy with Coconut and my energy levels have started to crawl up. I am no where near normal but am getting better.

Helpful medical related posts to read:




I had two encounters with Max Clifford, the PR supremo who died today from a heart attack. The first recollection involves a baby, a dummy, WH Smith and Waterloo Station. It happened in 1999. The second chance meeting took place when my daughter was 12 years old in 2011.

Way back when my daughter was about four months old I had taken her to WH Smith in Waterloo Station. She was never separated from her dummy apart from when she would think it was funny to throw it on the floor. Of course, being a baby, like others who pick the most inconvenient of moments to be difficult, she threw her dummy on the floor of the store. It was rush hour. I was sure someone would step on the dummy and squash it. With no spare dummy in the nappy bag I was dreading the consequences. A man blocked the way and picked it up. He gave it to me and I was stunned upon recognising him. Max Clifford was constantly in the news then for breaking stories that were salacious and earned his clients lots of money. I thanked him and he gave my baby a big smile. I literally dined out on that encounter for a long time.

Almost 12 years later we were passing through Waterloo Station again. Max Clifford was waiting for his train. I seized the moment to tell him about the dummy story. He was tickled pink. We had a chuckle and he very nicely offered his help if we ever needed it. There was never a cause to call upon him for.

Soon after the scandal broke about his crimes and he was jailed. I never would have guessed.

My daughter, Maelo Manning, obtained 2 A*s and 2As in her A level exams. Her first choice of university and course has been confirmed. It is to read ‘Philosophy, Politics and Law’ at King’s College London.