February 11, 2002
6:22 PM   Subscribe

Since I recently suffered a back injury, I have a new appreciation of ergonomically correct workstations. Are these the workstations of the future?
posted by alball (16 comments total)
Nice stuff, I've got a bad back too, and could never find quite what I needed on the market. I guess it all depends on what you are trying to avoid: CTS, poor posture, or poor circulation. Buying a desk and a chair at the same place and comparing adjustability is crucial. This place makes nicely adjustable desks. Building your own (blatant self link) is another option.
posted by machaus at 7:03 PM on February 11, 2002

Nice, machaus!
posted by rushmc at 7:34 PM on February 11, 2002

An alternative solution I heard about: crushed cockroaches in Diet Coke.
posted by Zurishaddai at 7:36 PM on February 11, 2002

That's quite an interesting unit, machaus!

I have often struggled with this problem, being one who suffers from a chronically bad back. The advent of Stumpf and Chadwick's Aeron chair for Herman Miller was a great improvement for ergonomics, but the 800 dollar price tag was always a bit steep for me. I have always thought a reclining position is the best one for long web surfing or programming experiences, and some of the devices in this post seem to be geared toward that. Perhaps Apple's new iMac will also allow for more flexible arrangements with the swivel arm thing.
posted by evanizer at 8:05 PM on February 11, 2002

That's quite an interesting unit, machaus!

I'm flattered, evanizer, but I'm married... :P
posted by machaus at 8:17 PM on February 11, 2002

"In April of 2000 while on a business trip I received a near-frantic email from someone with an unusual request. It seems that she represented a fellow with a company in Seattle (no, NOT Microsoft). Turns out that last September this guy was hired, and in his contract of employment it stipulated that he wanted a desk made out of LEGO.

"The hiring company evidently really wanted to hire this guy because their Human Resources department didn't scoff at the idea.

"Sure, he could have a desk made out of LEGO bricks."
posted by Tubes at 8:28 PM on February 11, 2002

Evanizer -- look on eBay and Craig's List (if it covers your area) for used Aerons, they're popping up all the time. But if you want a full-body work area solution for any and all economic difficulties that you might endure, and you have several thousand dollars to drop, you could try a Poetic Technologies people pod. I'm fond of the Aura myself -- I've always wanted a desk with built in heat and AC, plus a roof.
posted by Dreama at 8:35 PM on February 11, 2002

Oh, behave, machaus! I'm developing quite a scandalous reputation here on the 'Filter!

Thanks for the tip, Dreama. Since the Aeron was the chair of choice for the average defunct dod com, I have seen many go up at auction too. Just needs to coincide with my cashflow. When I have the extra money to spend, it usually goes toward hardware/software rather than furniture. And those pods are fantastic! The future I used to dream about is here I suppose.

I know someone who is nuts about the Alexander Technique; his computer chair (and piano bench) is a huge inflated plastic ball. I hear that Google has a lot of those same balls floating around the Googleplex. Sounds fun, but I like back support.
posted by evanizer at 8:54 PM on February 11, 2002

I'd need an caffeine-inducing IV to stay awake in some of those desks... I'm guessing that would cost extra, right?

Anyway, I'm not sure I want people saying "yeah, he makes his living working on his back."
posted by bschoate at 9:18 PM on February 11, 2002

My old boss used a similar reclining chair recommended by her doctor for easing the pain of her broken back. It's based on the zero gravity chaise position that NASA developed for astronauts during liftoff. Can't find her exact model- it was expensive, and covered with lawn-chair upholstery for indoor or outdoor use. We sat in it too sometimes, and I can attest that it was well worth the money. And yes, she was very productive.
posted by sheauga at 9:32 PM on February 11, 2002

"I have always thought a reclining position is the best one for long web surfing or programming experiences"

Funny you should mention that. I have a nice office chair that I sit in at my computer, and when I'm not typing, I'm always leaning back in it, at about a 30-degree angle by my quick estimate.
posted by CrayDrygu at 9:32 PM on February 11, 2002

Those stations make me sleepy just looking at them. Time for some coffee!
posted by Modem Ovary at 8:17 AM on February 12, 2002

Also, they look difficult to get out of quickly. What if there's a fire or a band of ninjas invade your office?
posted by Modem Ovary at 8:20 AM on February 12, 2002

I like the third and 4th ones the best. But I suspect, after awhile, it'd end up being "clickity!-click!-click!- - - Zzzzzzz.." after awhile.
posted by crunchland at 8:54 AM on February 12, 2002

thanks for all of the great links...I have a terribly messed up back (MTA bus + me on mountain bike in '95 = 3 perm. destroyed discs...only accupuncture has helped thus far!)...I gott a find a way for work to get me something more than a $300 "exec" chair...unfortunately, I werk from my home office and we have less then 50 employees...damn...oh well...

btw- Machaus' site rocks. (so do the home made desk set-up)
posted by ayukna at 9:16 AM on February 12, 2002

Hmm, something about having the workstation right between one's legs turns me off to this particular model. And it seems to also preclude crossing one's legs, something I love doing. Alas.
posted by beth at 10:05 AM on February 14, 2002

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