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Health and wellness in the workplace is becoming more and more important. You may not have access to a height-adjustable or sit-to-stand desk, but you can still promote your own wellness by engaging in active sitting.

But, what is active sitting? Active sitting happens in any chair that allows the person to move – movement is the key, and it’s what promotes wellness. Office chairs aren’t new, but according to the article The Quest for the Perfect Office Chair, incorporating the science of ergonomics into chair design really didn’t start until the 1970s.  Since then, ergonomic findings have continued to make it easier to move while you sit.

Features like tilt tension or weight-activated controls make reclining easier and more comfortable. Having the ability to recline allows users to change positions, creating movement in the spine. Any movement in your back helps to nourish the vertebral discs. The idea of active sitting is to foster this movement so you aren’t sitting still for long periods of time.

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Another way to get a truly active sitting experience is to try a new seating option like Perch from basyx by HON. Perch provides a simple, new way to encourage movement while you work. Supporting both seated and standing-height positions, you can easily adjust the height of your Perch stool to meet your needs with a one-touch pneumatic adjustment. The pivoting base tilts forward to bring you closer to your work while promoting an open hip angle. The seat features a waterfall edge to improve circulation in your lower body and it also offers a 360-degree rotation with a return to center.  Perch is lightweight and easy to move with the flared handle design. And, Perch is available in five color options: Black, Charcoal, Red, Blue, and Green.

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So, check out the new basyx by HON Perch to take your active seating to the next level or try any of the great task chair solutions HON has to offer that help promote movement for a healthier workday.

The concept of active sitting is just one of many ways to take a healthier approach to how you work. While active sitting helps reduce the effects of sedentary behaviors, it is important to remember that it’s not a replacement for dynamic, full-body activity.

How does your office furniture or layout encourage movement?

 

Preside, a holistic table solution to fit your space and design aesthetic, just keeps getting better. Whether it’s used as a stand-alone solution or matched with existing HON desk lines, Preside was designed to adapt to the needs of any space, outfitting all areas: conference, meeting, café and commons, collaborative, engaging spaces and more. With so much to offer, what more could HON add? Well, this week we’re introducing three key enhancements that will make Preside an even more versatile solution.

1. From Conference Room to Collaborative Space
The Preside expansion addresses growing workplace trends with new collaborative table solutions. These new tables help bring people together and offer a clean, modern design. Available in 72” or 96” lengths, select from seated- or standing-height.  Like the rest of the Preside line, these tables are available with or without technology. Choose between a full or half modesty panel, or a stretcher beam and no modesty panel when powered. Even more reason to love these new collaborative tables, the modesty panels can now be specified in the same laminate as the top or a coordinating laminate for a dual finish look!

Preside is moving out of the conference room and into collaborative spaces

2. Power Up with More Technology Options
Everyone is plugged in and on the go, so quick and easy access to power is important in both the conference and collaborative spaces. Preside has always had power options, but our recent additions provide more flexibility. New Extron plates offer more data options such as DP, VGA, HDMI and USB. These plates fit into the existing flip-top ports making it easy to swap out when power/media needs change, creating a future-proof way to power up Preside tables. Staying connected is something to get excited about!

New Extron plates allow for more power options

3. Build-Your-Own Perfect Space
New credenza options make it easy to create just the right solution for any space.  The Preside hospitality credenza was revamped last year to add great features, like hidden drawers and ventilation for a mini-fridge. While these great options are still available, the recent expansion includes a smaller, 60” buffet credenza (also with ventilation) and new modular credenza components. The new modular models allow you to choose from a bookshelf with a door unit, an open bookshelf, or a box drawer and door unit. The units can be mixed and matched to create just the right credenza for any space. Units can then share a spanning top and a spanning back for a finished and custom look. Sizable, custom looking credenzas- who wouldn’t get excited?

New storage options and build-your-own credenzas allow users to create just the right space

Preside has always been an exciting solution, but these new expansions reinvigorate our excitement for this popular collaborative solution. Which new enhancement are you most excited about?

Sit-to-stand workstations are all the rage in office furniture right now, allowing each user to individually adjust the station to his own needs and preferences. Height adjustable tables are also a great ergonomic solution that help promote movement in the workplace. But, before you sell your next sit-to-stand solution, (or better yet, use one yourself) you’ll want to consider a few things:

HON Height Adjustable Bases

Surface height
A height adjustable table can be raised and lowered to a seated or standing position. In each position, the worksurface should be used at an appropriate height that enables the user’s forearms and wrists to be straight and parallel to the surface. If the surface is too low, the arms may pull or strain the back, neck, and shoulder muscles. If the work surface is too high, shoulders bunch up towards the ears, creating tension through the neck and back. Both positions (too high or too low) are less than ideal and lead to awkward postures that can cause soreness and muscle fatigue, so it’s important to make sure that your worksurface height is right for you.

Find the worksurface height that best supports you while you work

Monitor placement
When using a sit-to-stand solution, consider the monitor placement:

  • Be sure to place monitors where they will not impede the functionality of the height-adjustable table.
  • Monitors should always be placed in a direct line of sight. Avoid placing monitors off in a corner where the user will have to turn to view them.
  • Monitors should be positioned about an arm’s length away from the user, but this may need to be adjusted forward or backward depending on the individual’s visual acuity.
  • The top of the monitors should be aligned with the user’s eye level in both the seated and standing positions. If monitors are placed above eye level, users will start craning their necks up to look at the screens. To reduce likelihood of eyestrain, we should have a slight downward gaze while looking at monitors.

HON accessories, such as monitor arms and risers, can help put computer screens at just the right height and placement. Take the time to readjust your monitors after you transition from sitting to standing height to ensure they are still properly positioned.

Proper monitor placement when using height adjustable desks

Footwear
When fully utilizing a height adjustable base to the standing height position, be sure to consider footwear. This is true for men and women alike. Wear shoes that are comfortable and supportive. Flat shoes or shoes without a heel will help with overall posture and allow feet to be more stable on the floor.

Wear appropriate footwear when utilizing a height adjustable desk

Sit-to-stand solutions are trending right now, providing individualized adjustments to any workstation and encouraging movement throughout the workday. But, they are not the right solution for everyone and can be a big change in work style for many. If standing is new to you or your customers, be sure to work up to standing for longer periods of time. If the user starts leaning on the surface, shifting weight often, or locking knees, this can serve as a good indicator that it is time to sit down for a while.

Want to learn more about HON’s height adjustable solution -Coordinate™? Visit the spotlight page on hon.com or view the latest Two-Minute Tutorial video from the HON University team for extra tips and tricks.

What do you love about height adjustable workstations?

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, today’s workers spend an average of 4.6 years in each job position. If you’re between the ages of 25-34, you may only be in your current role for three years. With so much of the workforce exploring new opportunities as this trend continues, how can you make yourself stand out? It’s actually easier than you think.

Get to work on time

Get to work early

We have all heard the phrase “the early bird catches the worm.” There is still some truth to that. You may not need to be early, but getting to work on time is a great way to demonstrate work ethic. Of course, we all have mornings where everything seems to go awry and we end up strolling in a few minutes late. But don’t make a habit of it. The small act of getting to work on time can boost your character and shows you are dependable, responsible, and professional – qualities that go a long way when you’re trying to move up in your career.

Look the part

Dress how you want to be addressed

Speaking of professionalism, be sure your appearance reflects your work. Come to work rested and put together. Not adhering to your company’s dress code or just making unprofessional wardrobe choices could be giving your colleagues the wrong impressions of you. My best advice is this – if you have to ask “does this look okay?”, the answer is probably no. You can also take it a step further and dress for the position you want and not the position you have. If you want to move up, look at what people in that position are wearing and follow their lead. This simple trick can have you looking ready for the next career move.

Be a team player

Be a Team Player

Many of us (me included) are guilty of thinking we can control everything. But if you are looking to make a good impression, adopt a “we” mentality. Some small, simple things can help you be a team player and network with coworkers. Ask those around you about their weekend or current projects. Next, give credit where credit is due. If someone helped you on a project, be sure to share the credit. Also, give out thanks and compliments when deserved. You don’t have to compliment everyone on every little thing, but when hard work was put forth, acknowledge it. If someone helped you out or supported your successes, let him know he is appreciated.

Ask questions

Ask Questions

Finally, if you want to stand out, start asking questions.

  • Ask for clarification when needed but, more importantly, be sure to ask questions to understand the larger organizational reasons behind why a particular task or project is important. Taking this initiative shows that you’re engaged.
  • Also, ask questions to help you gain more responsibility. In what ways can you assist on another project? Is there any follow up that can be completed? Are there future projects you could get a head start on, if time permits?
  • Ask questions to expand your experiences. Is there a seminar or conference you could attend? A skill set you could work on? Many companies provide classes or other learning opportunities, so ask if you can participate. Even if you anticipate the answer to be “no”, it’s worth asking because it shows you are taking action to improve yourself and your work. Just asking the question can change someone’s thoughts of you and put you ahead of the pack for the next position.

What are your tips for getting ahead?

Welcome and Reception:

Welcome and reception areas are the first spaces someone sees when they enter a building; especially, for the first time. That’s why it’s important to use furniture in these spaces that is inviting and leaves a positive impression. Try to incorporate soft seating that draws people in to the space. Don’t forget the impact that lighting can play in making a space inviting. It is also nice to consider some sort of service area to make people feel welcome.

Welcome and Reception

Common Spaces:

Common areas are similar to welcome and reception areas in that they should also be inviting. However, common areas should be designed to accommodate larger groups of people. As you can imagine, more people means more furniture needs and preferences. Consider a variety of seating and table options in common areas so individual work styles can be addressed. Vary the heights of tables and offer a blend of café and soft seating in the space and you’ll commonly find people in the common areas.

Common Area

Private Spaces:

Private areas are the place for heads down, focused work, so these individual spaces should be designed to maximize productivity. Be sure to include ample worksurface space and easy access to a variety of storage.  Extended surfaces and overhead storage give a person more room to spread out and work.. Private offices should also have task chairs that accommodate an all day sit to ensure the worker is comfortable.

Private Office

Collaborative Areas:

Collaborative areas should bring people together and offer a break from individual heads down work, while allowing people to be productive. Consider integrating collaborative areas alongside individual workstations. Try to include worksurfaces that can be used to lay out documents and soft seating. Also consider lightweight, easy-to-move furniture (i.e. cushions or seating and markerboards with casters) for a flexible, fun way for people to meet.

Collaborative Space

In which type of space do you work best and why?

The summer months mean many things: cookouts, pool parties, camp fires, vacations, and all sorts of fun. They also mean you might want to be sure to have a few things in your backpack, purse, suitcase, or car.

1. Sunscreen

Sunscreen really should be utilized all year round, but particularly so in the summer months as people tend to spend more time outside. Pack your favorite sunscreen in a backpack, laptop bag, or purse to have on hand when you need it. If you are a frequent flyer, make sure to add a small container of sunscreen to your liquids bag. And most importantly- apply and reapply the sunscreen as directed.Sunscreen

2. Water

Water is essential as the weather heats up. It keeps you hydrated and can help cool your body down. The more you sweat the more water you should consume. As the heat increases, opt for cold water over room temperature water for the cooling effect. Carry a reusable bottle around with you wherever you go. Or, if you need to be in a car for long periods of time, pack a cooler and stay hydrated as the sun beats through the windshield.

Water

3. Bug spray

Being outside is a great way to enjoy the summer season, but bugs area nuisance. Keep bugs bug spray handy at all times in order to keep bugs away. Tuck one in your car and bag. Be sure to spray yourself, your family, and your pets! Caution- be sure to read the labels on your bug spray before using on your furry friends. Also, remember not all bug spray is created equal. Read the labels to ensure your favorite repellant will actually repel the pests you are trying to avoid.

Bug Spray

4. Light jacket or scarf

It might be a scorcher outside but the air conditioning is running full blast indoors. Pack a lightweight jacket, cardigan, or scarf to use when you transition from the outside to the inside.

Summer Scarf

What other items do you keep especially handy in the office during the summer months?

Ergonomics is a word many of us have heard before; especially, if we are in the office furniture industry. When the topic comes up we usually stand or sit up a bit straighter. But what exactly is ergonomics? And how can you control your personal workspace ergonomics?

According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, ergonomics is “an applied science concerned with designing and arranging things people use so that people and things interact most efficiently and safely.” One of the things people use on a daily basis is a chair.

You can begin to control your personal workspace ergonomics by appropriately adjusting your chair. There are four basic adjustments on a task chair that can significantly improve your overall ergonomics:  seat height, seat depth, arm rest position, and back/lumbar support.

Seat heightSeat Height

Your seat height should be adjusted so that your knees are close to a 90 degree angle and your feet are resting flat on the floor or a footrest. Having your chair too high or low can create pressure points throughout the day that effects circulation.

Seat Depth

Seat Depth

seat depth should be adjusted so your back comes in contact with the back of the chair. You should also still have enough space between the back of your legs and the front of your seat to place a couple fingers. Again this will eliminate a pressure point while sitting.

Arm Rest Position

Arm Rest Position

Arm rests should be used to support your arms in a relaxed position to elevate tension and pressure on your neck and back. Your shoulders should be square and not up by your ears. Your elbows should be closer to your body and not out like “chicken wings.”

Back Lumbar Support

Back and Lumbar Support

Back supports are intended to support the back while sitting and still allowing for some recline movement. You should sit back in your chair and position the lumbar support to support your lower back. Having proper spine alignment helps relieve back and neck strain.

These examples of adjustable chair features are just a few of many factors that contribute to a more ergonomically safe workplace. Visit hon.com today to learn more about HON’s practical seating solutions that can be customized to fit the needs of almost any user.

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