March 6 is Employee Appreciation Day, so why not show your workforce their value by providing ergonomic workstations? Not only will they enjoy a new and improved work space, but when they spend their day at an ergonomically optimized work station, productivity will be higher and risk of injury will drop, reducing your costs in the long run.
Here we have put together a list of some of our favorite products that will help keep you and your workforce happy and healthy. Use it as a guide to see what kind of products are out there and how they can benefit you and your employees.
Sitting in front of a computer all day can raise some serious health concerns, including obesity and metabolic syndrome (increased blood pressure, high blood sugar, excess body fat, and abnormal cholesterol levels). If your job confines you to a desk, one of the easiest solutions to combat these risks is to alternate between sitting and standing during the day.
StandStand $69-$99: The StandStand is unique in that it is completely portable, collapsing to the size of a laptop and weighing in at 2 pounds. If it sounds flimsy, think again; the platform is extremely sturdy, supportting several times its own weight.
VERIDESK Pro, $300-$400: The VERIDESK is another product that sits atop your existing desk. It is delivered fully assembled and is spring loaded to make switching between a sitting and standing position effortless. It is designed to accommodate two monitors and comes in various sizes to accommodate the weight of your work equipment.
NextDesk Terra, $1,497+: More of a traditional-style standing desk, the NextDesk Terra is functional with beautiful design aesthetics. The power adjustment controls make it easy to switch from sitting to standing, but the company also offers fixed height standing desks.
When you do chose to sit, it is important that your office chair is adjusted to your body correctly. If your chair is not designed with the human body in mind, chances are you are putting yourself at risk for back, neck, wrist, arm, and circulation problems.
IKEA Markus, $200: This budget-friendly option offers adjustable tilt and height functions as well as built-in lumbar support. The back is made of mesh to provide good ventilation for your back during long periods of sitting. The good news is, you can try it before you buy it at any IKEA store.
Hermon Miller Aeron, $940 on Amazon: No list of ergonomic office chairs would be complete without mentioning the Herman Miller Aeron; the epitome of all office chairs. It features a wide, contoured back that alleviates pressure on the lower spine, armrests that slightly tilt back, and a seat with a downward slope that keeps the pressure off your thighs (keep that circulation going!). More than just being a wonderful fit to bodies of all sizes, it has ended up in the Museum of Modern Arts’ permanent collection because of it’s sleek look. Oh, and it’s 94% recyclable.
AllSteel Acuity, $1379+: This chair has a mind of it’s own, using your body weight to automatically make adjustments for reclining and lumbar support. With plenty of function and design options upon purchase, this chair is not meant to be run-of-the-mill. It looks classy and offers a good amount of back support.
Keyboards and Mice
Using traditional keyboards and mice can put some muscle serious strain on your hands and wrists, and repeatedly positioning them unnaturally puts you at risk for developing carpal tunnel syndrome. Although the somewhat unusual design of some of the ergonomic keyboards on the market may throw off your typing speed for a while, once you get a feel for it, it can reduce strain and normalize or increase your typing speed. As far as mice go, while they may feel large and unnatural in your hand, ergonomic mice give your hand and wrist the support they need.
Microsoft Ergonomic Keyboard for Business, $50: This popular keyboard offers a comfortable palm wrest that allows your hands to rest at a more natural position, while the split design gives your wrists the opportunity to work at a more comfortable angle. You can also customize the hot keys and take advantage of the zoom slider in the middle of the keyboard.
Goldtouch V2 Adjustable Comfort Keyboard, $115.00: This is one of the more flexible options for ergonomic keyboards. It has a 0°-30° adjustment range on the horizontal and vertical planes and features soft keys. No matter what discomfort you experience while typing, this keyboard is sure to have a position that suits your needs.
Logitech Wireless Mouse M510, $40: The simple, contoured design of this Logitech wireless mouse fits comfortably in right or left-handed users. The battery life is exceptional and the wireless receiver is small enough to plug it in to your computer and forget it is even there.
Anker Ergonomic Optical Vertical Mouse, $40: This vertical mouse is on a 45 degree angle, positioning the wrist in a neutral position, much like when you offer your hand for a handshake. Although the design is a bit out of the ordinary, your arm, wrist, and hand will feel like they are more naturally situated after you get used to the feel.
Appropriately positioning your monitor for the right focal length and height helps reduce neck and eye strain. A simple way to ensure your monitor is always in the right spot is to invest in a monitor arm, which usually clamps to the back of your desk and includes adjustment mechanisms so you can position your screen however you need.
VIVO Single LCD Monitor Desk Mount, $50: This heavy-duty mount supports up to 22 pounds and every joint can be tightened or loosened to make the monitor be as stationary or fluid as you want.
Halter Dual LCD Monitor, $100: For those who work with a dual monitor setup, the Halter Dual LCD monitor stand will keep both monitors at the right eye level. It can withstand the weight of two 27″ 16 pound LCD monitors, and is easy to customize the space in between the screens by adjusting the double-link swing arms. Monitors can even be rotated on the pole to allow viewing from nearly every direction.
Ergotron LX Desk Mount LCD Arm, $169: Ergotron’s sleek brushed aluminum design not only allows you to adjust your monitor height and distance away, but it includes guides to feed your wires through, creating an even cleaner desk space when it’s pushed out of the way. An theft deterrent anchor hole for cable locks are also included. This arm can hold up to a 27″ monitor.
If you work on a laptop sitting atop your desk, chances are you are peering downwards at the screen, which can cause neck and back strain along with bad posture. Notebook lifts bring the screen up to an appropriate eye level while giving the machine some room to breathe. It is best to use laptop stands with an ergonomic mouse and keyboard to keep your back, forearms, and wrists straight.
Allsop Monitor Stand Jr., $25: This solid monitor and laptop stand can hold up to 40 pounds and has ample space to store a keyboard underneath. Its simple, curved design makes for a nice addition to any office space.
mStand360, $60: Although slim, the single piece of aluminum that makes up the mStand gives it aesthetic appear and surprising resilience. It is tipped slightly forward, allowing better view of your laptop screen. The cable outlet allows you to clean up your desk space, and there is a space underneath to store your keyboard when not in use. This stand is made specifically for MacBooks, but is able to accommodate others as well.
Rolodex Two-Tone Mesh Laptop Stand, $70: The Rolodex two-tone laptop stand is adjustable from a 12-35 degree angle, including a raised edge on the front to secure your laptop. The mesh material adds to the cool design and allows for great ventilation of the notebook.
What are your favorite ergonomic office accessories?