Kitting out an office with the essential furniture and accessories to meet ever-growing ergonomic demands can be a challenging and costly business if you take the wrong step in your decision-making.
The good news is that it doesn’t always have to cost the Earth to buy the most effective and acclaimed products on the market that tick every box on the brief.
We’ve sourced our five most recommended products to help shape a genuinely ergonomic office without breaking the bank…
5. Ballo Stool
We kick off with a dynamic new spin on the traditional office chair.
Designer Don Chadwick is the driving force behind the Ballo – a multi-purpose stool which injects healthy dollops of vivid colour, life, and energy into a thriving corporate environment.
The Ballo is most definitely not recommended for an office more geared towards laid-back slouching. The rounded bottom ensures that you need to use your legs and core strength just to keep upright, promoting low intensity physical activity and healthy postural training.Comprised of non-slip dimpled air-filled domes (with a concrete counterweight to ensure that it stays rooted to the spot when not in use), the ultra-lightweight design makes it ideal for picking up and quickly moving around the office wherever needed.
It wouldn’t be your top choice of seat for longer periods of work, but the Ballo Stool is perfect for short-term focused blasts of energy, or for introducing fun and intensity into lively brainstorming meetings.
4. Elev8 Touch Desks
(from £529, officereality.co.uk)
Standing up all day at work might seem quite hardy and impressive, but it’s pretty tiring and tough on the poor old feet.
Flipping the coin, sitting down all day at work is much more comfortable and relaxing but can hardly be recommended for promoting energy or good health.
One winning solution for a more flexible working environment is the Elev8 Touch range of desks.
These cool desks give employees the freedom to easily and quickly switch between a standing or sitting position throughout a busy day at work.
The twin motor design delivers speedy movement between the two states, so you’re not left hanging around for ten minutes whenever you need to make the switch.
Available in a range of different sizes and styles – including our personal favourite, the super-swish Radial End Boardroom version – these desks are a great choice for boosting productivity, improving posture, and burning those calories.
3. 3M Keyboard Tray
(Approx £226, Amazon)
FACT 1: Keyboard Trays are perhaps one of the most essential yet overlooked components of a forward-thinking ergonomic office.
Providing the ability to independently move your keyboard and mouse without messing around with the rest of your desktop set-up or altering your sitting posture, keyboard trays can play a crucial role in eliminating the risk of poor typing posture and alleviating back or wrist pains.
FACT 2: A lot of keyboard trays on the market are cheap, flimsy rubbish which don’t do the job. This possibly explains why they get overlooked or disregarded so frequently in the first place.
FACT 3: There are some great examples of highly effective and affordable keyboard trays out there if you dig deep enough.
Our favourite picks are the premium quality keyboard trays from 3M.
Engineered with reassuringly Easy Adjust technology and working equally well for both right-handed and left-handed users (a key requirement that often gets forgotten in cheaper models), the 3M Keyboard Trays even allow you to move the keyboard and mouse platforms independently of each other to ensure perfect posture and prime positioning for every element of your workspace.
2. Herman Miller Aeron Office Chair
(£1,070, John Lewis)
We’ve already covered seats for short-term bursts of dynamic activity, but what about the ultimate ergonomic office chair for longer periods of work?
It’s very easy to get lost in crazy prices when considering the most luxuriously comfortable chair for the corporate office. When you put the words ‘corporate’ and ‘luxury’ together in the same product description, you can usually get away with slapping an extra grand or two on the retail price for no sound logical reason.
Priced at over a thousand pounds, you might think that the Herman Miller Aeron Office Chair is stretching the reasonable boundaries of affordability.
But the key point here is that you really are paying for the quality and craftsmanship of a chair which reigns supreme over other options with a far higher price tag.
Designed by Bill Stumpf and Don Chadwick, the elastomeric suspension seat and backrest deliver the impression of pleasantly floating in the air, with a beautifully bouncy effect for ultra-responsiveness.
The range of adjustment options for tilt, height and range of motion is quite frankly jaw-dropping and ensures that you can perfectly customize the chair to suit your shape, posture, your exact requirements and very probably your mood.
It’s the only chair in the world to have grabbed a spot at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, but we think it serves a far greater purpose in the office.
1. Humanscale Quickstand
In terms of providing a brilliantly efficient and flexible solution to switching between standing and sitting positions and saving a bundle of money in the process, the Quickstand from Humanscale is a clear winner in our list of the best affordable ergonomic products for the office.
We’re not alone in this conclusion either, as it’s also scooped the ‘Best Office Accessory of the Decade Award’ from Interior Design magazine.
Instead of splashing out a fortune on installing new custom sit to stand desks with buzzing motors throughout the entire office, the ingenious thinking behind the dual ergonomic function of the Quickstand is to quickly and affordably upgrade any old standard desk into a truly dynamic desk.
The adjustable-depth clamp mount is incredibly easy to install and gives you the instant freedom to place your monitors, keyboard and mouse in optimum position for any occasion.
Designed to take up very little room and free up the rest of your deskspace in truly liberating style, the Quickstand also comes packaged with a fully integrated cable management system.
In short, it’s the smartest way to achieve an incredibly innovative transformation of the whole office in just a few simple steps.