Did you know that an improperly positioned computer monitor can lead to eyestrain and neck or shoulder pain? If you’re craning your neck or looking to one side to see your monitor, you could be risking injury. And, the problem is usually simple to solve.
Your monitor should be positioned directly in front of you, and the center of the screen should be at eye level. A monitor that’s positioned too low makes you tilt your chin down, and a monitor that’s placed too high makes you tilt your chin up. A monitor that’s off to one side makes you turn your head and neck while you’re using the computer. And, holding these positions for most of the workday isn’t good for your overall health.
Many people need to raise their monitors—especially if they’re moving to a standing desk. A desktop computer monitor stand will help you position your monitor at a more ergonomic height. You may also need to move your monitor closer or farther away to achieve the ideal position: for optimal comfort, your monitor should be 20 to 30 inches away from your eyes.
To help prevent eyestrain, don’t forget the 20-20-20 rule! The American Academy of Ophthalmology recommends taking a break from looking at your monitor every 20 minutes . During that break, shift your focus to something that’s at least 20 feet away, and look at it for at least 20 seconds.
To place your monitor at the optimum ergonomic position, consider a monitor stand. You can find height adjustable monitor stands in many sizes. Check the measurements of the monitor stands you’re considering buying beforehand, to be sure that your monitor will fit on it, and that it’s sturdy enough to hold it—especially if you use an all-in-one.
If you don’t know how much your monitor weighs, you might be able to find the weight on the monitor manufacturer’s website. If that doesn’t work, look for a similar monitor online—that way, you’ll at least have an estimate. And, you can always weigh it, if you have a scale available.
Additionally, consider what the desktop computer monitor stand is made from. You don’t want to buy a monitor riser that will bend over time—you want to buy something that will last. And you definitely don’t want to buy something that’s too fragile for you monitor and risk having your expensive equipment tumble! So check the weight limit of the monitor riser along with the dimensions.
A height adjustable monitor stand lets you move your monitor up and down as needed. This can be helpful if you alternate between sitting and standing while you use your computer. You’ll want to learn about how the monitor riser adjusts, to find out if it’s easy to adjust. If the monitor stand is difficult to adjust, it can not only take up your precious time, but you could risk injury.
So, break out your trusty measuring tape to find out the height of your eye level when sitting and/or standing. Then determine the height of your work surface, and subtract it from the eye level height measurement. That number will tell you how tall a monitor stand you’ll need to place your monitor in the optimum position.