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I'm Loving My Varidesk Adjustable Desk
A couple of years ago, I developed an icky issue with a vein in my leg, and had to get the whole thing lasered from top to bottom. Having varicose veins running on my mother’s side, the vein doctor said, “Well, you should really stand up and move around more often during the day instead of sitting at your desk all the time.”
This is easier said than done; however, once this icky vein thing happened, I began to get VERY distracted by sitting at the computer. Every little ache in my legs had me scrambling up and down the stairs for a minute or 2 to just keep from sitting down.
Now, I work from home, and it got to the point where I really wasn’t concentrating or focusing very well, and so I began to research some alternatives to my work setting. If I were working for an employer, I'm not sure what would have happened - I'd probably be fired for not being as productive as I need to be.
Search and Experimentation
There were numerous ergonomic solutions that I explored (kneeling chairs, balance ball chairs, etc), and finally decided that I needed to incorporate standing while working for different periods of time throughout the day.
I decided to experiment first by stacking large books on my desk to raise my computer monitor and keyboard to see if I COULD actually stand and work efficiently.
It turns out that I found it fairly comfortable doing so, and then began to investigate the different standing workstations - or, to put it more accurately, an adjustable height computer workstation, since I wanted to be able to easily alternate between sitting and standing.
So many choices...
Frankly, I admit to spending about 3 weeks analyzing (and over-analyzing) different solutions. I was able to quickly rule out any "treadmill" desk since I know myself, and I know darned well that I cannot work while walking.
Plus, this is not a portable solution. Because I live seasonally, my workstation needs to go back and forth with me.
So, this also ruled out any full-sized desks.
The search narrows...
So, now I realized that I needed a desktop solution. Something portable that would work on any table or desk, no matter where I am.
At first I was going to “cheap out” and buy one that was about $150 – nothing more than an adjustable platform for a monitor, and another one for the keyboard.
The problem with that one was that it wasn’t a simple “lift – set – go” type of setup.
Finally, after looking at all the options, I checked out the Varidesk adjustable desk-top station, which – at about $275 seemed a little steep at first (plus about $40 shipping when I bought it in January 2014), but after reading all the Varidesk reviews I could find, I decided to just go for it.
Delivery and Setup...
I received my Varidesk within 4 days of placing my order. Now, it is possible it would have taken longer to arrive if I ordered it to be delivered to my home in New Hampshire (I’m currently in Florida) – but regardless, I was pleased with the delivery time.
(Note: To see my own Varidesk, see the photos below – the one here is the photo that Amazon provides.)
The company suggests that 2 people handle it, because the box was about 50 pounds. I had no problem maneuvering it, but I do think it’s wise to have someone help you move it and take the Varidesk out of the box.
Set-up is a breeze
There WAS no set-up! Out of the box, and onto the desk top! Boom. Done! Just remove a few pieces of cardboard and you’re good to go.
Adjusting the Varidesk
Moving this thing up and down has got to be the easiest adjustment I have every used. It’s quite a smooth operation.
I just made a little video for you, demonstrating my Varidesk in action! You can see the video below.
Now, I saw a couple of Varidesk reviews that mentioned something about that it doesn’t have a separate keyboard platform. Well, in my opinion, you don’t need one. Again, if you look at my photos and video (below), you’ll see how I work when I’m standing. It seems like my monitor and my keyboard are aligned perfectly.
How I Feel
I seriously love this thing, and although I have nothing scientific to back this up with, I can tell you that I definitely feel more focused and can concentrate on my tasks better now that I have the option to stand and sit intermittently throughout the day.
Maybe it’s just because I am not obsessing over my icky vein issue now. Maybe it’s all in my head.
But one thing is for certain, this was one of the best office tool investments I’ve ever made. Yes, I do consider this an investment, because if something can make me feel like I'm being more productive, then that, to me is a good thing.
Oh – one more benefit is that I’m not “hunching” as much now at my desk, so my shoulders don’t ache as much as they did before.
I hope you find this helpful! Please continue down this page to see my setup and how I make things work even when I'm away from home and don't have my own desk. When I get home to NH, I'll show you the set-up in my home office. :)
Standing for intermittent periods while working feels great; however, I recognize that there is a lot of value in having a "cushion" under my feet - especially when I'm standing for more than a half-an-hour. The anti-fatigue mat seems like the one that's got the best reviews. Once I get home and order it, I'll update this report for you, and let you know what I think. Also, the balance ball has gotten great reviews (and it's a great place to stretch your back as well).
This is the anti-fatigue mat that I'll be getting when I get home. I have a nice carpet under my feet here in Florida, so I'm ok for the winter.
I know this looks a bit odd, but my limited experience with balance/core balls is that they are comfortable. It might be worth looking at to add to your ergonomic desk set up.
Hi! I made the following short video to help you see, first hand, how the Varidesk works. Please keep in mind that I have it set up on a folding table since where we are at our winter rental doesn't have an actual desk. But, this works great! When we leave to return home, we'll just pick it up, put it back into its original box, and load it into the truck.
Here it is folks! This is my very own Varidesk! This video was taken at our winter rental in Florida - but when I got home, I made another video - this time showing my actual computer desk. :)