How to Light Ergonomic Adjustable Standing Desks
Ergonomic adjustable standing desks that let you work standing up are a great start for spinal and general health in the workplace. If you’re going to spend seven hours clicking around for work, the worst thing you can do is not put your body into a coma by sitting the entire time. But you can do even more, complimenting your adjustable standing desks with proper lighting. In fact, lighting and establishing proper distance between your face and the computer screen is the most important thing you can do at work for the health of your eyes.
The average desk lamp combined with mediocre ceiling lights are not enough to protect your eyes. The problem is that a computer monitor’s strong light creates a harsh contrast that can strain and injure the eyes. Other common, computer-related lighting problems include glare, other harsh lighting contrasts such as windows behind the computer, unnatural lighting tones that increase strain, and general eye fatigue. There are a number of simple steps you can take to create a more ergonomically lit work environment.
First, keep in mind the general idea that you want warm, even, natural light diffused throughout the area around your computer and office desk to create less contrast. The easiest way to do this is to start by setting up your standing desk so that your computer is perpendicular to a natural light source. Natural sunlight diffusing through a window creates the perfect amount of lighting during the day. You can supplement this with a few artificial lighting options that are especially necessary when it’s dark outside.
The first is a floor lamp – not some awkward, halogen ceiling lights that create glare on the monitor, and not a narrow, desk spotlight, but a conventional floor lamp that will flood the room with warm, even lighting. If that’s not an option you can use a lamp at your desk, but it needs to be an older style room lamp that throws soft light across your entire desk and behind the monitor, not just one bar of light beaming down onto the screen. If you have to use an adjustable standing desk lamp, the pros say it should be roughly 15 inches above the desk and aimed to create even lighting.
After that, other options include under-shelf lighting and more advanced tools like specialized bias lighting that synchronizes with the colors on the screen to control overall contrast. But if you take the basic steps above, the only remaining task to get the most out of your adjustable standing desk is changing your habits.
No matter how good your lighting or how effective ergonomic adjustable standing desks are, you should also take breaks. For the eyes, use the 20-20-20 rule; for every 20 minutes of work staring at a screen, spend 20 seconds looking at something at least 20 feet away. For the rest of your body, take a five-minute walk around the office to get a drink of water once every 45 minutes or hour or so. Giving your entire body a short chance to reset will increase focus and productivity, as well as protect your body. You will feel better and more productive when you combine breaks with effective lighting and an ergonomic standing desk.