Tag Archives: sit/stand

Sit-stand options promise brighter smiles for Dental Radiographic Technicians

Dental Maxillofacial Radiographic Technicians at the AADMRT’s 34th Annual Fall Conference in October were treated to some ergonomic tips and tricks by Ergotron’s own Carrie Schmitz, Ergonomic Research (@Giveafig) and Wendy McCubbin, Workplace Wellness (@Workfitwendy).

Better than a grape sucker, their “Positioning Your Digital World” presentation offered hope to association members facing the struggle of dividing their attention between patients, imaging equipment and computers.

The presentation brought to light ergonomic and wellness concerns prevalent within the dental radiologist offices, but common to many lab technicians throughout healthcare.

Annette Nelson and Nancie Grabow, of Cranial Facial Imaging, first approached Ergotron in June 2012 to speak at the event, but also to explore sit-stand mounting options for their Minneapolis, MN, location. As a result, Ergotron has been conducting a case study with the lab, outfitting several technician work areas with sit-stand workstations.

The goal of the year-long study is to gather information about what comfort and productivity gains could be achieved by staff constrained by factors common in their field which the team was already experiencing.

Ergonomic research shows that an individual’s physical and emotional well-being is enhanced when environments are personally controllable and predictable. According to Wendy McCubbin, “Empowering technicians to make these choices for themselves can improve their outlook and patient interaction.”

Carrie Schmitz agrees, citing the opportunity sit-stand workstations allow technicians in “modifying their work posture from sit to stand at any point throughout the day and as their body demands.” The act of standing more has natural and inherent physical and mental benefits while reducing the health risks that researchers link to prolonged sitting.

Increasing the effectiveness of patient interaction and caregiver health at the same time? That IS something to smile about.

5 steps to a killer sit-stand desk

Michelle Judd, Sr. Marketing Manager @ Ergotron

I got a call one night from a reporter asking, “How do you go about choosing a sit-stand desk? Is there a science to it?” It got me thinking. What is involved with choosing the right setup?

Here is my take. See if you agree. 
Continue reading

Ergonomics isn’t about perfect posture

Steve Adams, Senior Web Designer @ Ergotron notAboutPerfectPostureTry searching the web for “computer ergonomics” and you’ll find plenty of handy charts and tips:

Notice a common theme? Each page focuses on maintaining proper posture. You’ll find the correct arrangement for an entire workstation, from the angle of a monitor screen to the configuration of a chair. Good information to be sure.

But what happens when you dutifully follow those guidelines? Do you find ergonomic bliss? Do you experience computing so comfortable that you do it just to get an endorphin rush?

Of course the answer is “No”—because comfortable computing is much more than good posture.

Sitting in the same position all day, day after day, is a recipe for injury. As reported at Canada.com, “Sitting too long is the most common mistake employees are making.” In fact, even if a monitor and keyboard are at the ideal height and you have an ergonomic chair, the effect of so-called “static loading” will take its toll as muscles begin to atrophy. This is because, as a physiologist would describe, “The musculoskeletal system is unsuited for prolonged static work because the body cannot supply fresh nutrients to the stressed tissues.”

Indeed, the sad reality is as Peter Gibbs observed to Michael Bolton in the movie Office Space: “Human beings were not meant to sit in little cubicles staring at computer screens all day!”

So how does one find computing comfort?

Naturally, first set up your workstation according to the posture guidelines. But that is just the starting point.

The next step is to create a workspace and routine that accommodates movements your body wants to make throughout the day:

  1. Use adjustable monitor arms and keyboard trays to reposition your screen and any input device to where you are moving. Set up your chair properly and know how to use its adjustment features.
  2. Better yet, periodically stand while working whenever you feel like it. Create a sit/stand workstation.
  3. Take rest breaks: make excuses for quick walks—to the water cooler or wherever.

Once upon a time I pretended to be a mannequin for the sake of ergonomics and my body rebelled with shouts of pain and stiffness. But now I move—sometimes I stand, other times I sit, and there are all sorts of twists and turns continually happening in my cube. Heck, I even slouch now and then! And happily, all is well.

World’s Greatest Sit to Stand Workstation

Pete Segar, SVP Product Innovation & Chief Technical Officer, Ergotron

OK- I may be overstating it just a little- but I really do think that my computer workstation is one of the best in the world.   My computer workstation combines sit/stand ergonomics with dual monitor productivity all for <$1000.  It is an amazingly simple and convenient workstation that is perfect for the laptop road warrior.  

My workstation uses an Ergotron Neo-Flex Mobile Workspace cart fitted with a Combo Dual Monitor bow.  This allows me to position my 20″ Dell monitor next to my open laptop screen for a very nice dual monitor workstation.   When I come in the morning, I dock my notebook to the Dell docking station that is permanently mounted to the laptop tray of the cart, and open up the screen.  Then it is perfectly positioned for dual monitor productivity.   I find this provides a huge improvement in my effectiveness and prevents errors.  In my job, I am afrequent spreadsheet user, and the ability to have an email open in 1 screen, a spreadsheet in the other, and the ability to enter data into a spreadsheet without opening and closing windows is much faster and I am much less likely to make an error.

Sitting at my dual monitor workstation

Standing at my dual monitor workstation

Inserting my notebook into the docking station.  You can see the laptop mounting platform.

The cart has a 20″ vertical lift so I can easily sit or stand at any time.  I find that it really helps prevent back and neck problems to frequently reposition myself.   Plus, research has shown that you burn calories much faster standing vs sitting. There are many sit/stand worsktations that are commercially available, but they tend to be very expensive ($1,500-4,000) and difficult to use.  Motorized lifts need power, and take roughly 20 seconds to raise from sitting to standing-that can be very irritating.  Cranks are slow and very inconvenient.  The “Constant Force” lift technology is a smooth counterbalance that makes the lift very easy, simply pull up, it moves in place immediately, then it stays where you leave it.  Very intuitive and convenient.   Because it is easy to move- you WILL move it!

Finally, because this cart has nice smooth casters, it is really easy to reposition in the room.  I frequently pull my workstation out away from my desk, and over to the table in my room so I can share my displays during meetings.  We show presentation, meeting notes, etc, and then push it back to the desk when it is not needed.  This is really great.

 My workstation rolled over to my table for a meeting

The standard Neo-Flex Mobile Workspace cart works with either a notebook computer or else a flat panel monitor with a CPU.  I have a prototype configuration that uses the combination monitor/notebook mount from our new Neo-Flex Combo Stand to mount the monitor and notebook side by side.  I am very interested in seeing how much support there is for this type of product- so please provide feedback to my blog if you would like to see this product become available. 

I am issuing a “Dare to Dual” to you: combine a flat panel display with your docked notebook screen to achieve a cost-effective, efficient ergonomic workstation that will change your life!