Seattle, WA: 206-521-5676 Olympia, WA: 360-236-8748 Portland/Salem, OR: 503-768-9742 Info@SolutionsNW.com
Office Design – Setting up an Ergonomic Standing Desk

Office Design – Setting up an Ergonomic Standing Desk

Office Design – Setting up an Ergonomic Standing Desk

Did you know that American workers spend five hours working at a desk on average? In fact, many desk workers may spend their entire workday at a desk.

The way your employees spend their time at work can take a toll on their bodies, especially repetitive desk work. Investing in ergonomic office equipment like ergonomic standing desks will make an employee’s time at their desk more enjoyable – whether they are working in the office or doing remote work at home.

How do ergonomic desks work, though? Can you just set it up and leave it at that?  While investing in a professional ergonomics assessment will yield the best results, below are some best practice tips for ergonomic standing desks from the ergonomics experts at Solutions Northwest Inc..

How to Set Up Your Ergonomic Standing Desk

Whether you are looking for ergonomic solutions for the office or home office, there are a few things your employees should keep in mind when they are first doing their ergonomic desk setup. For example, ergonomic desks need to have different settings for standing and sitting.

Standing While Working

If your employee is standing, their ergonomic standing desks should be set up, so their elbows are close to their body, their wrists should be at 180 degrees to the forearm, and they should be able to look straight ahead at their computer monitor. Ergonomics experts recommend that if they have the option, they should also have a standing desk mat and something they can rest their feet on, alternating between which foot is up at any given time.

Sitting While Working

According to ergonomics experts, when employees are sitting at an ergonomic computer desk, they should have their monitor at eye level. This prevents them from craning their neck to look up or down. Both feet should be on the floor or a mat, and their elbows and knees should be at 90 degrees. Further equipment is likely needed, such as an ergonomic chair, which would help with any backaches or injuries workers might develop as well.

Related article: “The Ergonomic Way to Sit at Your Desk and View Your Monitor

Common Ergonomic Standing Desk MistakesErgonomics Consultants, Office Assessments, | Solutions Northwest Inc.

Standing desk ergonomics can help employees feel better and ease employee’s aches and pains that can develop over years of repetitive work.

There are a few things office desk workers should keep in mind when using ergonomic tools like a standing desk:

  1. Using standing desks doesn’t mean workers only stand while working. Employees should be alternating between standing and sitting because staying in either position too long can lead to injury and pain for workers.The benefit of an ergonomic standing desk is that it will make it easier to alternate between sitting and standing. In fact, some ergonomic standing desks come with a timer to let you know when it is time to alternate – if not, consider using your phone to set a timer to remind yourself to alternate from sitting to standing.

  2. We also spoke about setting an employee’s ergonomic desk properly above. Consult the manual or get some expert advice from an ergonomics consultant on how to set up the desk. Having an ergonomic desk but not optimizing it can be a huge mistake.
  3. Employees should also make sure they are attempting to stand or sit with good posture. They should stand or sit with their shoulders back and head up, looking directly at their computer monitors. Hunching and slouching can lead to some uncomfortable issues down the line.

Related article: “The Truth About Working Sitting Down vs. Standing Up

Invest in Ergonomics for Happier, Safer, and more Productive Employees.

Ergonomic standing desks can give your employees the option to stretch their legs and avoid workplace injury. If your workers see you are taking an active interest in their well-being, it will also lead to happier workers. Happier workers are more productive workers.

Investing in workplace ergonomics will pay off in the long run, which is why it is important to remain proactive even if your workers are working remotely. Contact the ergonomics experts at Solutions Northwest Inc. to find out how you can have a professional ergonomics assessment performed. And be sure to check out our new virtual ergonomics assessment, designed for remote workers (all they need is access to e-mail or a smart phone).

Have questions? Contact us at SolutionsNW.com, we will be happy to help you!

At SolutionsNW.com we value the importance of a positive workplace culture. Part of a positive workplace is a safe workplace, Contact Us to schedule an ergonomics consultation or ergonomics assessment for your office today.

Subscribe to our ergonomics blog for more ergonomics tips from Solutions Northwest Inc., ergonomics evaluations available in: Seattle, WA, Tacoma, WA, Olympia, WA, Vancouver, WA, Kent, WA Renton, WA, Beaverton, OR, Portland, OR, Salem, OR.

Virtual Ergonomics Assessment available nationwide!

Contact the Ergonomics Experts at Solutions Northwest Inc. Below:

Multiple Locations

Corporate Office: 120 State Ave. NE #397
Olympia, WA 98501
Business Hours: 8am-5pm M-F
Corporate FAX: 360-866-4773
Email: Info@solutionsnw.com

San Diego, CA

877-976-9462

Olympia, WA

360-236-8748

Portland/Salem, OR

503-768-9742

Seattle, WA

206-521-5676

Contact our Ergonomics Experts

Surviving Office High Heels 101

Surviving Office High Heels 101

Post By: Celeste McLaughlin, Ergonomics Manager
Produced by: Solutions Northwest, Inc. (Ergonomics Experts serving Washington, Oregon, and California)

Office Heels Pain Workplace

“49% of women wear high heels, even though the majority of heel wearers (71%) complain these shoes hurt their feet.” American Podiatric Medical

Wearing high heels in the workplace may be your fashion style of choice, but it may also be a cause of foot pain. Is the added height, tall posture, and altered gait worth the pain? Is there anything you can do to both enjoy heels and avoid pain? This blog may serve as a survival guide for wearing heels in the workplace.

The physics of high heels

High heels transform the body’s stance and one’s movement due the physics of your body’s center of gravity shifting. Your walk changes as your body tries to keep itself balanced. The engineers at Illumin explain, “When standing in high-heeled shoes, posture changes so that the back is arched, the pelvis and chest are thrust forward, the buttocks stick out, and the calf muscles tighten. The shoe slant causes some muscles of the leg to remain flexed while the added height to the leg gives an illusion of longer legs, both of which are important contributions to the classic heeled shoe stance.

The hip swaying, swift bouncy strides, and prominent stance are all in reaction to a shift in centers of gravity or pressure. The illusion of muscular legs, on the other hand, is a result of positioning of the heel of the foot.”

Avoid pain when wearing high heels
Now that you have a better idea about how heels affect your body, here are some tips to avoid pain at work while wearing heels at the office.

  • Use an adjustable footrest at your desk
    It’s important to make sure your keyboard surface height, chair height, and monitor height are always correct. Set up your workstation as if you are wearing heels and use an adjustable footrest for when you wear flats. This way, you always have a comfortable option available to you.
  • Stretch your feet on your breaks
    Consider doing foot stretches and exercises while at your desk. Watch Solutions Northwest’s video series for ideas on foot exercises you can do while sitting at your desk. https://www.solutionsnw.com/2017/10/07/exercise-desk-foot-exercises/ 
  • Purchase Hybrid Heels
    Be on the lookout for heels which mimic jogging/basketball shoes with pouches of gas for comfort. These are sometimes referred to as comfort heels. This built in comfort works as a stylish alternative to using inserts.

In Conclusion

It’s important to feel confident and comfortable in the workplace, while still being aware of work injury risks. If you are reading this ergonomics blog, you’ve already taken the first step into a healthy and happy work place, which is to always remain proactive about your workplace health.

As always, be sure to share these tips with your co-workers or employees and for more guidance on all work related health and safety issues, visit SolutionsNW.com or Contact Us for more detailed information.

Don’t forget to subscribe to our blog for more ergonomics tips from Solutions Northwest Inc., ergonomics consultants located in Washington State, Northern California, Oregon, Seattle, Olympia, Tacoma, and Portland.

 

Contact our Experts

Learn About Computer Vision Syndrome

Learn About Computer Vision Syndrome

Post By: Celeste McLaughlin, Ergonomics Manager
Produced by: Solutions Northwest, Inc. (Ergonomics Experts serving Washington, Oregon, and California)

Avoid Computer Syndrome at the Office and Workplace

The average American worker spends 7 hours a day on the computer and 58% percent of adults have experienced digital eye strain or computer vision syndrome as a direct result.” (AOA) 2015 American Eye-Q

Whether you work on an office computer or use your smart phone to communicate, screen time is unavoidable for many American workers. In fact, “the average American worker spends 7 hours a day on the computer” (AOA).  As you may expect, too much screen time puts you at risk for eyestrain disorders like computer vision syndrome.

What is Computer Vision Syndrome?

Computer vision syndrome (CVS) is a term to describe the discomfort or digital eyestrain one may feel after viewing a screen for long periods of time. According to the Mayo Clinic, “CVS is similar to carpal tunnel syndrome and other repetitive motion injuries you might get at work. It happens because your eyes follow the same path over and over.”  Symptoms include headaches, eyestrain, blurred vision, dry eyes, fatigue, neck and shoulder pain.

Prep your workstation to avoid Computer Vision Syndrome

Now that you have a better idea about what computer vision syndrome is, how can you avoid it if your job requires screen time? Here are some tips our ergonomics experts at SolutionsNW.com have compiled to improve your work station:

  • Eliminate glare on your computer monitor – To reduce screen glare, dim any overly bright lights in the room. However, be sure to keep the room lit enough for reading or writing notes. Using glare reducing monitor overlays or tilting your monitor can sometimes reduce screen glare. It may be necessary to move the monitor and/or work surface to a different location or close the blinds if glare is coming in from the windows.
  • Avoid competing light sources – Make sure your monitor is not directly in front of a window, directly under a bright light, and there are no lights shining directly into your eyes.
  • Consider glasses – If you are having trouble seeing the monitor, it would be a good idea to consult your eye doctor. If you wear bifocals and use a computer regularly, you may want to ask about computer glasses in addition to your regular glasses.
  • Adjust your workstation properly – Your monitor height should ideally be adjustable, although this is not always necessary. The top of the screen should be at eye level for normal vision and reference materials should be as close to the monitor as possible to reduce excessive head and eye movement. If you wear glasses which require you to use the lower portion of the lenses to read the text on the monitor, try lowering the monitor a few inches below eye height.
  • Establish healthy habits – Take breaks from looking at the computer screen and learn how to do eye exercises. Eyes can be exercised to increase strength of focusing and convergence ability, build stamina, and enable you to change focus faster. Check out these 4 Simple eye exercises you can do at work: https://www.solutionsnw.com/2017/04/29/4-eye-exercises-rest-eyes-work/

In Conclusion

Remember to remain proactive for a happy and healthy work environment. For some of these tips, you may need to speak to your office administrator or human resources director. Additionally, you may want to consider contacting an ergonomics expert to assess your work environment.

As always, be sure to share these tips with your co-workers or employees and for more guidance on all work related health and safety issues, visit SolutionsNW.com or Contact Us for more detailed information.

Don’t forget to subscribe to our blog for more ergonomics tips from Solutions Northwest Inc., ergonomics consultants located in Washington State, Northern California, Oregon, Seattle, Olympia, Tacoma, and Portland.

Contact our Experts

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