Old office standing desk:
The new job’s standing workstation
Michael and Chris,
Re: CR76, on the topic of standing desks, ergonomics.
I would encourage you guys to use standing workspaces. Built one for work, I converted a book-shelf into one at home for my home office as well. (Pictures on my blog). I find it really helped me with lower-back pain.
There are just three tips to the ergonomics:
There are a lot of tricks. Like switching your pointing device (mouse to trackball and back) at every pomodoro break. Eye exercises to reduce eye strain. And as you guys are both in the role of employers, all these are things you can steward in your employees.
Sometimes I need a sit break. I keep a large ball in the office to sit on and I tilt my workstation keyboard shelf up to do that. But I don’t need to do that for very long. I find it more useful to keep the ball around to do backwards upper neck/back stretches that counter “computer slouch.” (Recommended by my chiro.)
While in college, I suffered from a lot of wrist RSI, and wore wrist braces. These were my bad habits:
When I stopped living on-campus and started bicycling to school and around town, my RSI cleared up. A major aspect of RSI is getting good oxygenation to your tissues — good circulation. I would also encourage you to bike to work and for shopping as well. We need the exercise, we don’t really like our cars as much as we think we want to.
As programmers and sysadmins, we are in a population faced with major health risks: sedentary life style leads to heart disease, diabetes (like me), gout and chronic stress (which compounds all the above). And the best advice I can provide is to build activity into your day by removing chairs (cars, sitting while programming).
I’ve posted about how my previous endeavors to work at a standing workspace, at work, and at home. It has not gone sour on me yet. Presently at
Candelatech I’ve been sitting on an exercise ball with three landscape monitors. It’s a lot of screen realestate! I love not needing to maximize and minimize windows and the ability to glance at my debug window and at log output at the same time.
I feel like I slouch a lot more when I’m on the exercise ball–I’m eager to bounce up to the standing work space again. And soon I shall. I have built a wooden monitor rack from lumber reclaimed from a few projects around the house. I have hauled the pieces to work on my bike. It looks like nothing you’ve ever seen before. Expect photos soon.st
Interesting news about how drivers act around bicyclists…there seems to be a space about 3 feet away from the curb. Too close to the gutter, and they assume they can pass closer. Also, lack of helmet and having long hair apparently promote further passing distance. Read more at cyclious and streetsblog. Remember — be conspicuous and predictable. Don’t duck between parked cars, cycle in a straight line as if you had a bike lane besides parked cars…otherwise you’re constantly mergine back into a lane of traffic.
Here is a rather precise article comparing Seattle pedestrian, bicyclist and auto accidents with the citation rate between 2008-2010. It’s one thing to promote “share the road” but it’s also another thing to actually make streets safer. It appears about 10x more dangerous to be a pedestrian than a cyclist, and traffic citations appear to have dropped over some periods. The comments in the article are cogent.
Good post. Bruce Schneier probably has something similar to say on a lot of these topics. Teaching our kids to be afraid of everything definitely has consequences. A lot of things we casually do – like eating while driving, are far more likely to have severe consequences than letting them walk to school.
#carmageddon as a hash-tag seems so strangely appropriate for something as mundane as a freeway closure. It doesn’t deserve any more hype than what Twitter could provide, the subject really exposes society’s relationship to inconvenience — something hardly worth celebrating to begin with.
I think it’s great to see these transportation challenges. I imagine that if teleportation was an option, TSA would still have such long lines and slow policies, that it would take longer to teleport than to bike places, too.
(@Wolfpackhustle woulda dropped me in the first 0.1 mile, but I’ve been happy to ride that route. Seriously, LA has plenty of non-car commuting opportunity, just ask the locals.)