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Ergonomic Furniture: The Myths and Realities

31 January 2024

Interior decor in homes and leisure spaces is completely different from how it works in the office. Naturally, since the space is built for, and meant for different kinds of activities, the decor used will reflect this difference. That's why you barely ever see a home designed like an office, or vice versa.

Office spaces place significantly more emphasis on ergonomics than homes, but because of how much ergonomics has grown over the past few years, it's understandable that plenty of myths have risen up about the subject as well. This could be harmful, because if employers end up believing them, they may not make the investments needed to enhance the workplace.

Let's look at some of the myths around ergonomic furniture, and what the reality is.

Common Myths About Ergonomic Furniture

Ergonomics is About Comfort

The whole point of ergonomics is to make sure that workers are able to stay comfortable in their work environment. This does mean that one of the major selling points of ergonomic furniture is the comfort it provides. However, many people assume that the comfort aspect of ergonomic furniture has more to do with the feeling, rather than the long-term effects.

Ergonomic furniture is not meant to be instantly comfortable, but rather to bring you comfort as a result of good design. Ergonomics is structured around good posture and healthy work habits to make sure that you don't suffer any long-term negative effects.

For example, couches are comfortable, but couches are not meant to make you sit with good posture. They do not promote good seating position, nor are they a good area to work in. In fact, if you were to spend a long time working on your couch, you'd end up feeling quite uncomfortable because of all the stress and strain you put on various parts of your body.

Ergonomic furniture is made with your health in mind, and as a result of good health, your comfort. Unlike other furniture which focuses on comfort as a superficial thing, ergonomic furniture handles underlying problems to bring about a solution.

Ergonomics Is Just a Trend

While it is true that ergonomics is trending, that doesn't mean it's all it is. Ergonomic furniture tends to come with a pretty heavy price tag, so it's understandable that people assume it's just a ploy for furniture companies to sell more furniture.

However, if you look at the research and understand how each aspect of the furniture is meant to protect your health, it becomes clear that it's more than just a trend. The high prices are because of all the safety features installed to make sure that users have a comfortable experience, and that they don't suffer any long-term effects as a result.

Most office furniture that is of the non-ergonomic variety will generally focus on functionality, with no regard for user comfort or safety. To combat the problems that could arise from using these items, ergonomic furniture puts extra care into making sure that users remain safe. Due to the positive impact this furniture has had, ergonomics is now booming, which is likely one of the reasons people may assume it is just a trend.

Ergonomics is For Offices Only

While it is true that offices need more emphasis on ergonomics than other setups, the idea that ergonomics is limited to office spaces is completely untrue. Ergonomic furniture is usually sought out for the purpose of preventing or resolving issues of wrist, neck, shoulder or back pain, and sometimes even eye strain.

Most of these problems come from the way office setups were done in the past, and that is why ergonomics is commonly associated with office spaces. However, ergonomic furniture is meant as a means to ensure better health and avoid problems like strains and pains which could develop into long-term concerns.

This means that ergonomic furniture is obviously not limited to office spaces - people who type a lot for their own personal hobbies at home, or people who have to spend the whole day standing, for example, would benefit from ergonomic furniture just as much as they would in an office space.

Ergonomic Furniture is Only For People With Injuries or Conditions

There is a common argument that unless you have a physical condition or injury that keeps you from using standard furniture, you don't need the ergonomic type. However, just because people look for ergonomic solutions to treat existing problems doesn't mean that that's the limit.

After all - better safe than sorry! Most users of ergonomic furniture are admittedly those who have already developed a condition like chronic pain or repetitive stress injuries, and are looking for a way to help resolve the problem. However, the purpose of ergonomic furniture is to maintain good health, and doing so is also a preventative measure.

Just like exercise is necessary for a healthy person to stay healthy, ergonomic furniture is needed to make sure a healthy office worker doesn't develop a physical condition as well. After all, anyone working a 9-5 is at risk of developing injuries or conditions, unless they just happen to be of the exact height and stature and build for standard furniture to work out for them.

Investing in ergonomic furniture doesn't just help solve problems, but it also helps prevent them in the future and minimize the cost of injury for businesses and corporations.

Ergonomic Furniture is Useless

With all of the above factoring in, someone who doesn't know much about ergonomics may just come to the conclusion that you don't need ergonomic furniture at all - it's useless, and expensive and you can do just as well with your standard furniture.

It is understandably hard to really grasp the positive impact ergonomic furniture can have on your body, since it takes time for the effects to really show.

Not to mention, since most people who use ergonomic furniture are those who are in the recovery stage, rather than the prevention stage, it takes an even longer time to be able to say that using ergonomic furniture helped, because recovering from a problem takes a lot of personal effort and other solutions as well.

However, as mentioned, ergonomic furniture can help with prevention, and is designed for comfort based on underlying causes. This means that it can do a lot to help businesses and corporations keep their employees safe and comfortable. This results in higher productivity and lower absenteeism, because stress levels are reduced. It also helps minimize the cost of injury.

Vici Duplex Standing Desk

When we think of ergonomic furniture, most of us will think of comfortable, fancy office chairs. Good office chairs are definitely an important part of ergonomics, but that's not all there is.

For example, height adjustable standing desks have become a big part of workplace ergonomics. FlexiSpot's Vici Duplex Standing Desk is an excellent example of a standing desk.

This desk has the option to let you adjust the height to one that suits you. Since having the correct height for your desk is necessary to make sure your arms, back and neck are in the right position, this feature is pretty much an essential when it comes to ergonomic furniture. The height adjustment also allows you to switch between sitting and standing which can be an excellent way for you to combat a sedentary lifestyle by switching whenever you feel like it.

The height adjustment is further made easy by the control panel, which lets you move the desk up and down to your preferred height. You can also save 4 preset heights so you don't have to mess around with the buttons every single time - you can adjust the desk to your preferred height with the touch of a button.

The Vici Duplex Standing Desk also has the additional benefit of having two tiers: that is, you can switch between a two-tiered desk and a single-tiered one. The single tier option is helpful for tasks which require more space, such as arts or crafts. However, the two-tier option allows you to arrange your desk in a way that has an ergonomic monitor placement so that your work becomes more comfortable.

You can also just use the second tier for accessories and livening up your workspace. It also works well for a collaborative workstation, in case the two people have different height requirements.

All of these features aren't made as a gimmick, though it's easy to dismiss them as such. These are important features that are added to the desk with the purpose of addressing some real problems that can cause injuries in today's work environment.

Ergonomic furniture is developed with careful consideration and research in mind to make sure that employees remain safe and healthy.