Introducing ESI Ergonomic Solutions!

October 17, 2012

We’re excited to share that ESI Ergonomic Solutions products are now carried by Anderson Interiors!

In celebration, take a peek at our introductory specials!  Our CFO has, and highly recommends, the Solstice desk light.

ESI Ergonomic Solutions is committed to improving efficiency in the workplace through the use of accessories that promote comfort, mobility, and flexibility. They’ve been providing unequaled ergonomic accessories to offices, healthcare and educational environments for over two decades and we’re delighted to have the opportunity to share in that vision!

Like Anderson Interiors, ESI Ergonomic Solutions is a woman-owned business and has been awarded national certification.

Introductory offer is valid through December 31, 2012.

For more information, please phone 412-828-7420.

Take a Stand for Better Health

February 9, 2012

Medical research suggests that sitting for long periods of time can have a negative effect on one’s health.  According to a recent study, sitting for more than 6 hours can substantially increase the risk of heart disease, diabetes, and even certain types of malignancies.

But, here’s the good news. You needn’t be a marathon runner or even a regular at a gym to lower your risk. It’s suggested that simply standing can reverse or preclude the harmful effects of being seated.  That’s right, stand up from that sofa, desk chair or car seat and you’ve lessened your risk of developing a serious disease.

In addition, standing prompts your body to consume three times the amount of calories that are expended when you sit. Yes, three times. Your waistline will thank you, too.

It sounds easy enough but it can seem to be a challenge for those whose jobs involve long hours behind a desk. Except, not really. Stand while talking on the phone, and set a reminder for yourself to stand for a few minutes every hour, regardless of what you’re doing.

Or, you might consider getting one of these:


Height adjustable desks by Sunway enable you to stand while you work;  for an hour, for a while, for a day.  Simply change the height of the desk with the up / down control switch, custom fitting it to your mood and your needs. A quiet motor ensures that you won’t disturb co-workers in the process.   Stand and work or enjoy the ergonomic benefits of the desk while seated. Your body will benefit either way.

Ergonomic Desk Setup

September 22, 2011


In addition to having an ergonomically correct chair, it’s important to consider proper desk setup to minimize the opportunity for awkward postures that can potentially cause a variety of physical problems.  Taking note of a few key elements can result in less fatigue, more focus, and a generally more comfortable work experience.

The first thing to consider is the size of the desk in relation to the tasks to be performed. A desk that doesn’t have enough surface space results in illogical placement of components and devices, forcing the user to assume awkward positions to reach or see them.  

The work surface should be sufficiently large to accommodate a monitor that’s placed at least 20 inches away and directly in front of the person viewing it. If additional monitors are required, an angled desk should be considered, allowing for seating in the corner rather than along the straight edge.  Ideally, the screen should be at eye level or just slightly below that.

Other items on the desk should be placed within easy reach. To determine optimal placement of phone, mouse, and other frequently used items, simply raise your arms and extend them to each side.  While keeping your arms extended, move them towards the center of your body while noting the area that is within that boundary. That is considered your normal reach zone. Positioning frequently used items and devices within it prevents stretching and uncomfortable movement that can ultimately lead to stress and strains. Place items that you need less often outside of that zone.

You should also verify that the desk is neither too high or too low. Consider installing a height adjustable keyboard and mouse tray beneath the desk surface.  When typing, your elbows should be at a 90 degree angle and your wrists should be straight. Resist resting your wrists on the surface of the desk or tray while typing.

It’s also important that the desk allow for enough space for legs and feet. Do not store anything beneath your desk that would restrict foot placement. If there is not sufficient clearance for knees and thighs, consider removing any drawers beneath the desk surface. Another alternative is to remove the keyboard tray, placing it on the surface of the desk instead. If this option is exercised, the height of your chair should be adjusted to allow for proper arm and wrist placement.

Give the Gift of Ergonomics!

December 2, 2010


Give the gift of comfortable typing this holiday season!  Ergonomic keyboards like this one offered by Teknion encourage optimal placement of the hands and wrists, reducing the possibility of discomfort or injury due to long-term use.

Ergonomically correct office and desk accessories facilitate ease and efficiency while performing associated tasks.

For more information, please visit our website or phone 412.828.7420.

Help for Lower Back Pain

October 14, 2010

Lower back pain is being experienced by increasing numbers of American workers each year and  is now the second most common cause of disability in the U.S.  It’s believed that over three-quarters of Americans will encounter it at least once in a lifetime, a staggering statistic that has prompted more attention to prevention, possible causes, and treatment.

Researchers cite several factors that might be contributing to the number of reported cases, including weight, increased awareness, lifestyle, and occupation.  Unfortunately, office workers aren’t exempt.  Sitting in a chair for long periods of time can potentially cause a pre-existing condition to worsen or can even prompt periodic episodes of discomfort for those with no history of back problems.

Sitting, sitting, and then more sitting can wreak havoc on one’s back due to the tendency to not maintain good posture. Slouching in one’s seat can cause the lower back to bend in an unnatural position, potentially leading to strain and even damage.

Are you sitting up taller now? 

The good news is that you don’t need to read an article on the Internet as a reminder. An ergonomic chair can provide continuous back support and help maintain good posture, resulting in less potential to assume positions that are less than ideal for lower back health. A properly adjusted ergonomic chair can reduce the opportunity for stress and strain, lessening the chances that you’ll hear from an unhappy lower back on a regular basis!

But what about other chairs that you spend time in during the course of a normal day? While it’s not practical to cart your office chair home with you (even though you may want to!), you can enlist the aid of a lumbar support cushion to help make that dining chair a bit more comfortable, too.

Lumbar support cushions are available in a number of different sizes and price points. To find the right one for you, sit upright in the chair for which you plan to use it. Using your hand, reach behind and measure the approximate distance between the curve of your lower back and the chair. Try not to lean forward or back while doing this.  The thickness of the cushion should be in that range.  Then estimate the height of the curved area of your back. That will correspond to the height of the support pillow that will work best for you.

Alternatively, you can make your own cushion using a foam wedge like those commonly sold at fabric and department stores.  Or you can even use a bath towel or small baby blanket. Simply fold the towel in half and then roll it until it’s the proper thickness. Snip the remainder away, then secure both ends to prevent the towel from unraveling.  If you prefer a more finished look, cover the cushion with a pillow case or fabric, securing the ends with ribbon or string.

If you have any other tips for alleviating lower back pain, please comment and let us know!

Selecting a Desk Chair

March 29, 2010
Most people who work in an office setting inherently know that having the proper desk chair can greatly increase comfort and lessen the risk of back strain and other undesirable outcomes. In fact, a proper chair is considered the single most important aspect of one’s office space.

Desk Chairs by Teknion

The ideal chair encourages good posture and allows one’s arms and legs to rest in neutral positions that decrease the opportunity for stress on muscles or nerve endings. When selecting a chair for yourself it’s important to consider several design features.   

Back Support   

The backrest of the chair should be height adjustable to provide adequate support to the lumbar or lower portion of your back.  Simply put, the curvature of the chair should conform to the corresponding area on you. You should also note if the backrest includes a tilt feature.  A slightly reclining position is considered optimal for most desk work and you might find that you appreciate a chair that allows that option.  


The ability to adjust the height of the armrests is an important detail. Verify that they can be moved to facilitate various tasks, including reading, writing, and keyboard use.  Proper arm placement can lessen tension in your  shoulders and neck, resulting in increased comfort and decreased opportunity for fatigue and soreness.   

The Seat   

Ideally, the seat pan should distribute your weight evenly.  A curved or waterfall edge can also contribute to overall comfort, eliminating pressure points to the back of your legs.  When deciding on a specific model, verify that there is adequate space between the back of your knees and the chair edge. The standard rule of thumb is 3 to 4 inches, or the same number of fingers away from the seat.  

Adjustable Height  

Verify that the chair is height adjustable.  When seated, your thighs should be parallel to the ground, feet flat on the floor.  

Stability and Mobility  

If you plan to use the chair in a reclining position, a five-point base can help prevent tipping. In addition, take note of casters and swivel features, both enable mobility and virtually eliminate the need to twist or turn when reaching for items on your desk or surrounding furniture.  

Another important consideration is fabric or other seat and back coverings which can also influence comfort as well as durability. Most chairs come in a variety of colors to fit most any decor.

The average office worker spends more time in a desk chair than on a sofa, chair or mattress in one’s home.  Selecting an ergonomically correct chair can offer benefits that far exceed the time spent to accomplish it.

The Eyes Have It

November 11, 2009

When designing an ergonomically correct office setup, it’s tempting to focus primarily on the optimal chair, or ideal mouse and keyboard position. However, it’s equally important to pay attention to lighting and other design and equipment elements that can contribute to eyestrain, resulting in an uncomfortable- and less productive- day at the office. 

Who needs another reason to have one of those?

Here are a few ways to help ensure that it doesn’t happen.  At least due to eyestrain. We’ll tackle the other reasons in subsequent entries. You know, along with “The Office” triva and exploring meaningful career paths for Desperate Housewives in Multiple U.S. Cities.


It’s important to note that eyestrain can translate into different things for different people. Symptoms may include;  burning, dryness, pain at varying degrees of intensity, blurring, watering, and headaches. Not pleasant by anyone’s standard.  Fortunately, you can readily adjust your work environment to lessen or even eliminate any or potentially all of the common symptoms.

First, take note of the lighting in your office, including ceiling, task, and natural. Glare is one of the primary causes of discomfort, prompting the eyes to react or possibly encouraging posture adjustments to facilitate better vision. Position your desk so that you are not directly facing any light source, paying special attention to changes in natural lighting at various times of the day. Lighting that’s placed to the side of your computer monitor is more eye-friendly, eliminating glare from above and / or behind the screen.

It’s also important to consider the distance from which you are viewing your computer screen or other work materials. Ideal placement varies according to age and visual acuity but a general rule of thumb is further is better, providing that the material is close enough to be seen easily. 

Taking frequent breaks from what you’re doing can also go a long way toward making your eyes happy. Focusing on an object at the same distance for long periods of time strains the muscles in the eye, prompting a negative response. Remember to look away from the screen periodically, deliberately focusing on something at a different distance. Or, better yet, stand up and stretch.  Your back, neck and legs will be grateful, too!

Of course, one should always consult a doctor when experiencing any of the symptoms of eyestrain but if the diagnosis signals your eyes simply aren’t pleased with something you’re doing, you can readily change that!