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tips for buying office furniture

Adjust Your Task Chair with These 4 Simple Steps

Ergonomic desk chairs are more than just additions to a workspace: The Occupational Safety & Health Administration recommends the use of ergonomic chairs that foster a neutral, comfortable working posture. Ergonomics not only promote good posture and, in turn, physical health, but can create a more pleasant work environment that promotes productivity.

1. Adjust the chair to your height

One of the most important aspects of ergonomic seating is the height of the chair. Sitting in a chair that is too low can force one to raise the arms to reach the keyboard, causing strain in the neck, shoulders and upper back. It also encourages rounding of the spine and places added tension on the tailbone and buttocks. Adversely, seating that is too high places pressure on the thighs and back of the knees, cutting off circulation in the lower extremities.

A good chair height supports the thighs evenly and allows the feet to sit flat on the floor. The Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety outlines suggestions for adjusting the chair to your height:

  • Stand up in front of the chair and raise or lower it so that the top of the seat cushion when parallel to the floor is at a height just below the knee cap.
  • Sit down on the chair with feet flat on the floor. Ensure there is about 2 inches of clearance between the front edge of the seat and the calves. Achieving this may require you to adjust the tilt.
Herman Miller Aeron chairThe Herman Miller Aeron chair has a tilt function that echoes the natural body mechanics.

2. Tilt according to your task and comfort

In general, a slightly forward tilting chair is the most comfortable for basic computer usage. However, variation is key to avoid placing continuous pressure and strain on certain parts of the body. A backward tilt allows the user to recline slightly, and a horizontal seat is ideal for sitting erect and upright.

“The key is selecting a highly flexible ergonomic office chair.”

Since tilt should be adjusted regularly to mix up position, the key is to select an ergonomic office chair that is highly flexible and easy to adjust quickly while still providing a frame that disperses pressure and allows the feet to sit flat on the floor. For example, the Herman Miller Aeron chair is designed with a tilt action that echoes the body’s mechanics and provides support that stabilizes the pelvis for a natural curvature.

3. Alter the armrests

Adjustable armrests are an important feature to ergonomic office chairs, as improper arm positioning can lead to strain in the neck and shoulders. When armrests are too low, the user might be more inclined to slouch forward to rest his or her limbs. If too high, the user may be forced to hunch the shoulders when placing the forearms on the rests.

The proper armrest height for good ergonomics should be at around the same height as the point of one’s elbow when bent at a 90-degree angle, according to OSHA. This positioning allows one to place his or her forearms on the rests with the arms slightly lifted at the shoulders, taking weight off the shoulders and shifting it to the elbow.

Adjustable lumbar support allows you to easily alter the chair back to conform to your spine's natural curvature.Adjustable lumbar support allows you to easily alter the chair back to conform to your spine’s natural curvature.

4. Adjust the backrest for optimal lumbar support

Perhaps the most essential feature of an ergonomic office chair is lumbar support, which minimizes tension on the back and prevents slouching. The aim is to match the backrest to the contour of the spine when seated in a neutral position. You may need to adjust the backrest by raising or lowering it so that it fits snugly in the natural curvature of the spine and pushes the back forward. However, high-end chairs such as the Herman Miller Celle provide a lumbar adjustment function. The lumbar support should feel firm, and you should not feel any pressure points in the back.

– See more at: http://blog.officedesigns.com/health-well-being/4-simple-steps-to-adjusting-your-task-chair/#sthash.k1GyB3Dn.dpuf

If you need help picking out the perfect office chair, please don’t hesitate to contact us at (757) 855-2800.


The Link Between Plants & Productivity


According to the article by Caroline Webber, studies have shown that the environment we work in has a huge impact on how we think, act, and feel. Sure, painting the office green will boost moods, but we could take it a step further than that.  A study was done in which bees (whose brains have very similar molecular structures to humans) were exposed to the smell of recently cut grass. Within a few minutes, the behavior of the bees changed from agressive to calm.  So what does this mean for you? 

Plants not only improve air quality, they improve your well-being.  According to an article posted by Leading Company, when you increase the amount of greenery, the complaints about things such as being too cold or having headaches decrease.  Productivity is said to increase by at least 12% when people have plants in the room that they are working in.  Is this enough to make you want to buy more plants?

For more details, click on the following links:

Click here for full article

Click here for full article


Workspace Woes Are a Thing of the Past

Tips below from Avery on having a great office space and creating the right impressions.

Workspace Woes Are a Thing of the Past

Like it or not, we’re often judged on the state of our desk or office. Establishing and keeping your workspace organised and tidy helps you look good, find things more easily and work with less stress. Adding a personal touch with colour or something from home makes your work environment a better place to be.

Tips to Picking a Sought-after Office Location:

A window seat is a great seat! You’ll get the benefit of natural light and a view.

A workstation that is away from high traffic or noisy areas of the office minimises disruptions from the general office noise

Consider the air conditioning in your office. If you feel the cold, you don’t want to be stuck under a vent that blows cold air!

Create the Right Space

Organise your space functionally and effectively with adequate shelving, a sizable desk, and a comfortable and adjustable chair. You’ll work better with furniture and space that suits your requirements.

Prioritise the items that you use frequently, storing them within easy reach. The items that you use less often can be stored in a cupboard or filing cabinet (where more effort is required to access them). It means you can access your information easily, and then also return them to their home easily. You’re more likely to retain the organisation and keep your desk tidy when it is less effort to do so.

Style Your Way

Select your desk accessories to tone down what you want to hide and contrast what you want to accentuate. This will help your workspace sit ‘comfortably’ within the existing interior and colour scheme while still having some colour that makes you feel good about your work environment. Then personalise your space with photographs or something that helps make the day to day desk time more fun. This way you can give your workspace a personality that you want to be around!

Label It!

Use a labelling system to mark folders and files to ensure they are always easy to grab when you’re rushing to a meeting, or need someone else to grab the file. Your colleagues will be super impressed with your desk if they can find what they need (and return it afterwards) when you’re not there.

Clutter-free From the Start

Ensure your paperwork doesn’t get lost in a pile by using letter trays, magazine file, binders and expanding files. Contain clutter with the help of desk drawers and pen holders. ‘Hide away’ the mess by managing frequently used working documents in manila files and document wallets.

If our desk is a good place to be, we feel better about our work. If our workspace is tidy and organised, it’s a better work environment for us, and for our colleagues. It’s time to make your workspace woes a thing of the past!

via Workspace Woes Are a Thing of the Past.

Tips On Putting Together A Home Office

Interesting article on putting together a functioning home office.  Office Furniture Outlet sales people are experienced in helping clients fit an office into a particular space.  If you are in need of a home office and don’t know where to start, give us a call – (757) 855-2800.

Home is where the office is…

Feb 10, 2012

Ventilation and natural light are the two most important aspects when it comes to creating an ideal work environment. The office space should be demarcated from the home environment, writes Bindu Gopal Rao.

With advances in technology, whether wireless Internet or state-of-the-art communication systems, accessibility and affordability have meant that working from home is a reality. A home office is considered an important part of a home.

So, how does one go about creating one? Shweta Gupta, Partner, Soulscape Furniture & More advises, “First you need to write down what you will be doing from your home office. Your office space at home could be used for a conference with your team or it could serve as your private corner for very serious work.

Mostly the home office needs a computer linked to the web, printer, scanner and telephone. Some more elaborate ones also need tablets, speakers, mic, camera and gaming consoles. In all, this could mean a lot of cables which must be concealed.” The interiors should neither be overly professional and understated nor too loud and informal. “

The office space should be effectively distinct from the home environment. Personal preferences of colour, choice of design and layout, whether contemporary, modern or traditional should be kept in mind. Don’t use dark colours; use shades of white, pastel shades of blues and green which will lighten your mood,” says Harshawardhan Jayant Honmode, Division Manager for Architectural Markets, 3M India.

It is preferable to have your home office in a designated space where you can work in isolation, away from distractions. Ventilation and natural lighting are the two most important aspects for creating an ideal work environment. “Make sure that the room has ample doors and windows to let in enough fresh air and sunlight.

A bright and airy room makes for an ideal workspace. In case this is not available, then consider investing in full-spectrum lights and using a couple of air-purifying plants. Also consider the use of an AC to maintain air quality and temperature where natural ventilation is not possible. Use carpeting and create barriers to block noise. If you can afford it, consider wiring the walls with the new hybrid telephone cable that mixes traditional copper lines, coaxial cable and fibre-optic technology,” says Kochutommen Mathew, Kochuthommen Associates.

Furniture and furnishings

It goes without saying that the furniture in the home office needs to be both comfortable and ergonomic. The area also needs some storage to keep your laptop/system, books, CDs and stationery. “The chair used should be ergonomic with height adjustment, tilt and adjustable arms,” says Gupta. Modular fittings work well in this space. “Instead of a real desk, you can opt for one or two dining tables with a comfortable chair. You should have the space to work, so go for the biggest option possible,” says Christian Beettjer, Head Design, OMA Living.“

A home office desk unit in durable materials like wood, steel or glass and which integrates compartments for all PC parts and also storage for essential items will help transform your home office into a professional environment. “

While choosing a desk, it is better to avoid solid/chunky ones as this makes the room look smaller. A built-in shelving unit is perfect for storing books and objects in a small space. If the space needs to be flexible then consider furniture that can be folded and made compact or have wheels so that they can be moved around easily,” says Mathew. Sachin Sehgal, Director, Studio a+i advises, “To maintain economies-of- scale one can always re-upholster the existing furniture befitting the design and decor. However if someone is not adept at it they can always go for multipurpose customised home-office furniture available in the market or search online.” via

Read More:  Home is where the office is….