As qualified workstation DSE assessors, we’ve seen just about every workstation niggle there is over the past 10 years.
As a nation, we are getting taller but furniture proportions have been largely untouched for the past 30 years with the industry-standard desk height remaining between 720-730mm.
If you are tall, you might be familiar with the agony of knocking your knees on cross beams under your desk or perching on a chair that’s too small for you, but there are some simple adjustments you can make to ensure a much more comfortable and ergonomic way of working.
If you are tall or have particularly long legs, your desk is going to be one of the biggest barriers to an ergonomic setup.
In Scandinavian countries, height adjustable desks are fast becoming the standard instead of a fixed height desk. The benefit of height-adjustable desks over fixed height is that the employer can adjust it to fit any user, as well as giving the end-user the option to stand at work.
If you have a fixed height desk currently, the first option is to raise the desk with some simple desk risers that will safely raise your desk height by a couple of inches. If you are on a long bench system that you share with others, it would be impossible to raise just your section of the desk. In this case, we would recommend using a sit on top desk riser such as the Ergotron TL as a more cost-effective option than replacing the entire bench desk.
When you are sitting or standing at your desk, you can check whether your desk is the right height by the position of your forearms. As shown in our trusty standing guide, stand or sit as close as possible to the desk, keep your shoulders relaxed and ensure that your forearms are parallel with the desk.
With such a wide variety of chairs, it’s difficult to choose the perfect one. Taller users will need to ensure that their spine is protected with a higher backrest. In addition to this, their chair will also need a deeper seat to ensure that their thighs are supported. The Solid Back chair, Flo chair and RH logic 400 are excellent investments for taller users as they cater for both needs with high levels of adjustability and comfort.
Now that you’ve got the basics set up and you are feeling a lot more comfortable, adjust your screen to the correct height by making sure the top of the screen in line with your eyebrows. If your screens’ own adjustment doesn’t go up high enough, try using screen risers or better yet, an adjustable monitor arm.
Taller users may also, in turn, have broader shoulders and larger hands. Keep this in mind when choosing a keyboard and mouse. To cater for this we would recommend a larger keyboard to prevent rounding the shoulders in, and a handshake shaped mouse for better wrist posture.