Ergoman takes on Twin Cities Heart Walk

ergoman picks for web21

Ergotron’s Ergoman took a short break from his Heart Walk promotional activities this week to visit with a few folks from our headquarters. Ergoman (aka Justin F., Ergotron social media manager) will be taking on a few challengers this Saturday in the mascot race at the Twin Cities Heart Walk. If you are in attendance, cheer on the man in blue, fighting to end heart to disease and advocate for a more comfortable computing experience!

HeartWalkShirtErgotron is proud to support an organization doing so much to help kids, families and communities live heart-healthy lives. If you haven’t yet, take advantage of the great resources and tools they offer, like this information on understanding the warning signs of heart attack, stroke and cardiac arrest.

Their tagline sums it up best: Life is why™.

Team Ergotron will wearing blue on Saturday. Give us a shout if you see us!

78% of Office Workers Sit Too Much

8-5_parkingSedentary behavior in the office continues to be a rising concern across urban centers on every continent and highlight an issue that many businesses may not be ready to face. Their workers not only don’t like sitting for so long, they also worry about the negative impact of that sitting.

According to a new On Your Feet Britain survey (conducted by and the British Heart Foundation (BHF), nearly two-thirds of the 2,000 office workers surveyed were worried sitting at work was having a negative impact on their health. This statistic correlates with results from Ergotron’s JustStand® Index in 2013 which indicated 74% believed sitting so much could lead to an earlier death.

According to Lisa Young, Project Manager for the BHF’s Health at Work Programme, “Too many of us are tied to our desks at work, which could be increasing our risk of developing cardiovascular disease.”

And not only that, research links sedentary behavior to risk of developing Type 2 diabetes, obesity and more. Dr. Frank Booth, of the University of Missouri has identified 26 health risks associated with sedentary behavior.

With viable sit-stand solutions available on the world market to address these concerns, it is perhaps time to ask yourself if your business is ready for a sit-stand workstyle?

A few things need to be in place to support the growing employee awareness of issues like “sitting disease” and their call for a healthier workplace. Not every company can be the Apples of the world, with the creative and adaptive work environments. Most businesses are stuck with rabbit warrens of modular cube construction, undefined budgets for more investment in ergonomics, and no way of knowing if a sit-stand environment would have a meaningful impact on productivity and healthcare costs.

Gavin Bradley, from Get Britain Standing, told the BBC News: “We need new and innovative ways of addressing the issue.”

Here are five ways for your company to get started:

  1. Design to accommodate sit-stand work environments. Rather than addressing it as an afterthought, bring it forward right at the beginning of a new build or rework. Even if you don’t adopt sit-stand from the start, you will have planned for it down the road. And keep in mind collaborative spaces as well as workstations or conference rooms. Integrating standing options throughout the company helps it become a habitual approach to business.
  2. Investigate your sit-stand options. Truly, there never was a better time for finding the right workstation to meet any employee need. Take time to find the workstations that fit your decor, technology requirements, and price range, then create a list of approved sit-stand desk options. The key is to have it in place when your employees coming knocking at your door for one.
  3. Better be prepared because your employees will come knocking. They’ll send you an email. They’ll bring in a doctor’s note. They make their own sit-stand station out of old toner cartridge boxes they find by the printer. Some percentage of your employee population has already heard the sit-stand message and is currently pondering what to do about it. Be ready for them. Here’s one employee’s feedback. Micah R. told us recently: “Just so you know, when I bought the work fit station I was the first person in an office of about 200 people to stand while working. I was worried that I would create problems by doing this, but what has happened has shocked me. Dozens of people have followed my lead and are now standing at work and every year now on my review I get positive feedback on the influence that I have had on my coworkers and my commitment to a healthy lifestyle.” 
  4. Help your hurting employees right away. Nothing sways productivity more than people who are hurting because of their chairs, unable to concentrate or who, all too often, are being whisked away to doctor’s appointments. Giving this population access to sit-stand computing will help them alleviate back strain by allowing frequent posture changes. Studies show it makes a difference. And many employees self-report a reduction in back pain, or a reduction in health related care, like chiropractic visits, when they integrate sit-stand into their work routines.
  5. Don’t neglect your healthy employees. Incorporate a three to five year strategy for sit-stand work environments into your wellness planning to safeguard healthy employees before they start to hurt. The costs associated with not addressing a worker’s emerging health issues can escalate quickly. Preemptive support to help healthy employees remain healthy has an impact on their productivity and your bottom line.

Where you take it from here will be truly exciting!

It’s not just sit; it’s not just stand. What is becoming very clear now? It’s sit and stand. This postural rotation back and forth is what is associated with the many positive health results we are seeing in existing and emerging research. This is good news for the global community coming to grips with the impact this sedentary behavior is having or will have on our lives.

Our last point could have been: Educate, educate, educate. But in reality, there are many great organizations doing that for you like, in conjunction with BHF, who are sponsoring the inaugural On Your Feet Britain Day today. A few other organizations with similar bents:

When 78% of your work force turns their eye on you regarding this issue, will you be ready?


Earth Day: A great time to reuse, recycle…







Did you know that only 12.5% of e-waste is currently recycled? E-waste, of course, being the electronic gadgets, etc. du jour that somehow become immediately obsolete seconds after we use them. Who doesn’t have extra keyboards, extra cords, extra phones, and heaven forbid, gasp, an old CRT?

Earth Day is always a great day to remember these e-wasters and make a plan to dispose of them posthaste!

In the document, “11 facts About E-Waste,” reminds us that e-waste represents 2% of America’s trash in landfills.

Fortunately, there are groups like that are helping us become responsible e-citizens, and that organizations exist that will analyze “e-waste” to determine if it is waste at all. Here at Ergotron, 100% of our e-waste is recycled through an outlet that either gets these materials back in circulation or recycled for materials recovery.

Joanne P., contacted us one day about a resource she found helpful. If you are a Verizon customer, they have a program that provides a safe way to dispose of unwanted electronic devices, and they’ll reward you too. Best Buy does something similar, accepting nearly all electronics and large appliances at no charge.

Looking for other outlets? Spring and Fall are two seasons for neighborhood cleanups. Agencies and businesses come together to help neighbors recycle everything from construction waste to, you guessed it, e-waste. Contact your local recycling center to learn about dates scheduled in your neighborhood.

Of course, there are county-wide organizations that accept your used e-waste all year long. Sometimes for a fee. Still, spending a few dollars to keep it out of a landfill is a good thing.

Each year at the Minnesota State Fair the DNR creates an Adopt-a-River Sculpture create a sculpture out of all the things they dragged out of the Mississippi River. It’s astounding. If you are faced with the choice of the garbage can, the river, some ditch on a remote country road or spending a few minutes researching local resources online, please choose online!

You could even organize your own event, or partner with a local recycler like we did yesterday morning to help celebrate Earth Day. It was surprisingly easy to find a few volunteers, communicate it to the company, and gather up the 330 plus pounds of e-waste.

In the end, Earth Day is always a good reminder…whatever your waste is, recycle responsibly.

HIMSS15 Recap: What we learned in Chicago

This year’s Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) annual conference took over Chicago’s mammoth McCormick Place with 43,129 attendees and 1,300 exhibitors – a record!

We enjoyed seeing everyone at our booths and had great conversations about healthcare workflow and supporting care in every part of the hospital.


Our aim was to bring the hospital to HIMSS15 attendees, allowing them to experience the difference that comfortable computing can make in the digital workflow. The response was overwhelming. Our visitors told us over and over: Seeing is believing! They appreciated being able to see our “situation room” and imagine how it might function in their own workplace.

“Every hospital and clinic has its own unique set of challenges and we’re fortunate to have the widest variety of solutions to help bring EMR’s right into the workflow and triangle of care in a way that is ergonomically correct and that caregivers will adopt,” said Bob Hill, marketing manager for healthcare at Ergotron. “On average, nurses spend about 35% of their 10-hour shift doing documentation. With all the other job hazards nurses face during the shift, that 3.5 hours documenting shouldn’t be the cause of stress, strain, or injury.”


Giving attendees the chance to experience workflow solutions in a staged hospital setting makes it easier to understand how Ergotron and Anthro are supporting care everywhere. The two companies joined forces to give attendees a hospital-view on point-of-care StyleView carts, wall mounted workstations, radiology desks, and other computer stations for the entire facility.

We were also trend spotting outside the booths. Social media was huge at HIMSS15. At one moment on April 15th, the hashtag #HIMSS15 was trending at number eight in the U.S.!

Nobody did a better job of keeping up with the social media conversation than our friends at CDW Healthcare. (Chicago is their hometown, after all, so they were in the thick of it from the get-go.) For the best tweets each day – covering interoperability, Big Data, telehealth, etc. – check out CDW’s posts, like this Day 4 recap.

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One of our favorite informatics nurses, Brittney Wilson, BSN, RN – A.K.A. The Nerdy Nurse – attended as a HIMSS Social Media Ambassador. A super-knowledgeable influencer, she tweeted that the biggest buzz at HIMSS15 was about Apple Watch apps. (Top trend: wearables are slated to be the next generation of health IT devices.) She also tweeted that she was “really impressed with the offerings from @VoceraComm and @TeleTracking.” Vocera uses the Apple Watch and an enterprise-class platform for hands-free clinical communications. Tele Tracking is an enterprise solution for optimizing hospital operations and patient flow. We’re impressed, too, by these new innovations and so many more that we saw at the show.

As healthcare moves to the cloud, connectivity and security are becoming pressing concerns. Many presenters and exhibitors at HIMSS15 addressed the associated risks.

That’s one of the reasons we’re already looking forward to HIMSS16 in Las Vegas, which will feature tours of cloud hosting facilities. (Remember, Vegas is the home of Zappos.)

We’ll get a first-hand look at how these IT pros ensure privacy and security of data in the cloud.  Hackers are learning that stolen health data is more valuable than bank or credit card info. (It has a longer shelf life.)

We’re excited for what’s next in healthcare IT.  Healthcare pros, we’ll look to you to continue inventing the future and we promise to continue to support it.

We’ve almost recovered from #HIMSSanity! How about you?

[video] WorkFit-T: Setup So Simple…Blink And You’ll Miss It

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While we don’t supply the super-speedy IT elves, we do supply an out-of-the-box experience you’ll love! Available in white or black, the WorkFit-T Sit-Stand Desktop Workstation will open the door to a healthier workstyle. Ready when you are!



We’re Bringing The Hospital To You At HIMSS 2015


HIMSS 2015 is off to an exciting start! This year Ergotron and Anthro are joining forces to give you a hospital-eye view on point-of-care carts and imaging furniture for the entire facility. Step in an experience the difference comfortable computing can make in the digital workflow, supporting care giving and patient engagement everywhere you are.

We’re highlighting everything from our sixth generation StyleView® medical carts, to the latest Telemedicine and telepresence solutions, and everything in between.

Looking for things to do? See Anthro’s What to Expect at HIMSS in Chicago, for First time Attendees blog, learn more about our booth promotions, or follow along socially at @ergotron, @ergohit or @anthrocorp.

Is Your EHR Hurting Your Nurses?

HospitalRXNurses are on the front lines of the industry’s radical transformation in EHRs (electronic health records), spending, in a typical shift, 35% of their time on documentation—that’s 3.5 hours of their workday entering information at a computer. Considering that about 30% of hospital executives report being unhappy with their current EHR system (survey by Premier), there’s a good chance that nursing executives, and the nurses who work for them, are equally unhappy.

WhenHealthcarehurtsUnderlying every EHR implementation is the goal of doing business more efficiently, but so much focus is put on the availability of the systems that certain parts of the implementation and logistical concerns may not be getting the attention they deserve. If nurses have complex systems to master, have equipment that doesn’t fit within their workflow, have equipment that doesn’t properly address privacy concerns or is uncomfortable to work on, the systems will never reach their full potential.

This news comes at a time when nurses may already be feeling unsettled about nursing shortages or the fact that nursing has the third highest reported injury rate of any profession. In a recent survey of full-time nurses, 60% are concerned that their job is negatively impacting their own health. Nurses are 48% more likely to have wrist, back and ankle sprains or strains, and 53% of nurse injuries are due to overexertion. Twelve percent have been injured on the job over the course of just one year and over 50% of nurses commonly suffer from back pain and sore necks. When considering these statistics, a few things quickly become clear. Their time spent documenting should not be an additional source of exertion and musculoskeletal injuries. But it is. Forty-nine percent of nurses report feeling some level of discomfort while inputting charting data into a computer workstation.

WhatNurseWouldDoWhat can be done? Fortunately, wrist and neck injuries related to time documenting are preventable. Planning and training is key. Nurses need the right support crew, in the form of adjustable and ergonomic workstations, whether mounted on the wall or in mobile formats that give nurses the power to improve their comfort during charting while also allowing them to deliver the same or an even better level of patient care.

In order to maximize your EHR implementations successfully, include evaluating current and future workflow processes and plan for the right equipment. Get input from nurses upfront, then be sure to train them on how to best use and adjust the equipment, making the act of documentation a positive experience for their bodies, wherever their shift takes them. With careful planning it’s possible for the implementation of EHR to work in your nurse’s favor rather than becoming a pain point.

When nurses feel good, it improves their quality of care. Conversely, injuries and physical discomfort directly affect patient interaction. Nurses admit feeling less friendly or engaging with patients and modifying or limiting their activity on the job if their body is hurting. Having the proper equipment is a win-win for nurse comfort and EHR implementation success.


Poor usability, time-consuming data entry and interference with face-to-face patient care are just three of the prominent sources of professional dissatisfaction with EHRs (2013 RAND report). While these factors won’t completely go away when improving computer interfaces, some challenges can be addressed to help ensure that in addition to adhering to government mandates and compliance, nurse health and safety remains a top priority.

Steve Reinecke, MT (CLS) CPHIMS
AVP of Healthcare at Ergotron

Steve R


DIY Standing Desk?

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Let’s all salute the office pioneers who, braving co-worker ridicule and IT angst, reached for the boxes, books, and other cube accessories to create stand-up desks in their sit-only landscapes.

Folks like Nikki, Amy, Ryan and the others, what were they hoping for? More energy, more focus, or maybe even for a back pain free day away from a sit-only workstyle. Like them, Ergotron is focused on pioneering workstations that get people moving too.

Have a DIY desk you want to share? Send us your pic on Facebook!

Obama Administration Requests $1 Billion in Education Funding


Recently, District Administration and other news outlets like it, reported the Obama administration’s request for $1 billion in funding for American Indian education, including millions for schools needing new construction or significant repair.

Native American children are considered “at risk” students, not only for lower high school graduation rates, but also for the occurrence of Type II diabetes and obesity, which has reached epidemic proportions as compared to Non-native populations.

Recognizing that Ergotron’s product base gives educators the ability to activate classrooms where children spend much of their sedentary time, we joined forces with the Mayo Clinic at one Minnesota school, Nay Ah Shing Elementary, on the Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe Reservation. The Mayo Clinic was investigating the impact of incorporating more movement (Prevention, 2010) in the classroom on student health, behavior and performance and Ergotron was able to provide sit-stand workstations as intervention.

Physical activity in US schools averages less than 45 minutes per day although the government recommendation is 60 minutes. In the effort to improve academic achievement many schools have sacrificed physical education classes and recess. At the same time, statistics predict that obese adolescents stand a significant chance of becoming obese adults. The health risks associated with a growing population of overweight and obese citizens include cancer, diabetes, heart disease, dementia and early death¹.

Building on observations made during the pilot project at Nay Ah Shing, researchers are now studying students using Ergotron LearnFit™ Adjustable Standing Desks at Belle Terre Elementary in Palm Coast, Florida and Fountain Hills Unified School District in Phoenix, Arizona. The theory is that once kids get moving, standing, and walking around in the classroom during their learning time not only will it impact their health and risk for disease in the future but also it will increase their learning, processing and academic test scores. As at Nay Ah Shing, Belle Terre and Fountain Hills, students are tracking student activity and educators have been instructed how to teach in an active mode.

The US government encourages manufacturers like Ergotron to collaborate with scientists and research institutions on projects like Nay Ah Shing with the goal of improving the course of the lives of children. Students that may have otherwise left school will have more incentive to stay the course and, ultimately, become high performing adults. In addition, any funding that helps with the adoption of more active learning environments can tackle the issue of overweight students and play a part in preventing the onset of related (and extremely costly) diseases².

We will be blogging more about this important topic in the months ahead.

1. Jeffrey Levi, Chrissie Juliano, & Laura M. Segal, 2006
2. G. F. Dunton1, 2009


Safety First – A Super Bowl Reminder


Last night, the wall of melty cheese greeted me as I walked into my local Walmart. Must be the Super Bowl, right? With the big day fast approaching, people all over the country are getting their supplies together.

In the spirit of game day, here’s our list of the top three things to do to help ensure that the party is a safe day for everyone invited:

  • Try standing for part of the game. Sure, you might pop up for the occasional high-five when an outstanding play occurs, but most of time you’ll probably be sinking back into the couch, snarfing down the carbs. Standing, even for a short time every twenty or thirty minutes, will keep your metabolism moving, and give you more energy for the after the game play-by-play rehashes.
  • Encourage your guests to stand too. It’s never too late to help spread the message about reducing sedentary time. Make a game out of it for the whole family, like musical chairs after every commercial. Or try tracking how many Fritos® you just burned by standing with our Caloric Burn Calculator. Be the role model for your kids and help them learn healthy behaviors early in life. This way, maybe future Super Bowl parties can be healthy ones too.
  • Assess the needs of your home theater, and in particular, your TV mount. TVs in a room full of moving people can vulnerable to upset if not properly mounted. Check out OmniMount’s blog on TV safety and take time to remind the kids that TVs can tip.

Of course, I might even add, watch the sodium intake, but what am I, your mother? Maybe I am just trying to remind myself. Have other tips to share? Let us know!

Michelle Judd, Sr. Marketing Manager, Global Communications @ Ergotron