Even if you average an hour of exercise a day, which is roughly what I get, you are spending a lot of time not exercising. If you work at a desk or are a writer like myself, you spend a lot of that time sitting down. With so many reports calling sitting the new smoking, that’s a bad thing.
When I first moved to Portland, I was selling a few of my items I didn’t need anymore. One was a large dresser. While I was waiting for the purchaser to come and get it (it took a few days) I had placed my laptop on the top of the dresser. I would stand there and do work while I set up the rest of my loft. I found I actually enjoyed standing while I wrote. The buyer came and took the dresser away. I tried to recreate it with a homemade version. That didn’t work too well. Then I tried a semi-desk but it was neither tall enough nor sturdy enough. To some extent I gave up. I bought a desk, and a chair and resigned to just sitting.
Quite some time ago, I heard of the product Varidesk. Then I stayed with a friend who had one and I used it for a few hours. I had to get my own. Which I did. I am now the proud owner of the Varidesk Single (pictured to the right). After using it for a few weeks, I wanted to give you my thoughts on how it worked for me.
Whenever I go to write a review of something I usually go online to see what other people have said. More specifically, I look at the most negative comments. I want to see what potentially could be the worst aspects of a product. I then compare them to my own experience and make a combination of what I like and what I may not like down the road. Here is what I came up with.
First and foremost, there is no assembly required with the Single (I don’t know about the others.). Pulling it out of the box, setting it on my existing desk and beginning to use it in ten seconds was just wonderful.
I am 6’1’’ and therefore a little on the tall side. I can see how the VariDesk might be considered a little too short for people my height and above. Then again, we have spent the vast majority of our working life with a monitor at eye level or higher. Who is to say that is the right height? But yes, looking down at the screen could possibly get a little tiring. So be it. It hasn’t bothered me so far. (And, in hindsight, can you blame the VariDesk if it does not go high enough? Maybe the desk it is sitting on isn’t high enough to begin with.)
When the desk is in the down position, and you are sitting (yes, I occasionally sit down as well when using it), it is a little high. If this bothered me at all, I would simply keep the desk in the upright position and move my laptop under the desk. It was like it was in its own little cave. Problem solved.
That’s about it when it comes to complaints. I feel there is ample room for a mouse and a mousepad, a few things plugged into the other side, and in this case, all the accoutrements I happened to have on my desk when I was typing this review. It is easy to move from the up to down position and back again. While it is a tad heavy, it is still sleek and cool looking. Best of all, I know I am doing something better for my health for the hours I spend writing. It also makes it much easier to dance while I type. I have moves like Jagger, FYI.
For anyone looking to get one of these, I would highly suggest you also get one of the mats they all sell on the website. It is extremely comfortable on your feet. Chances are you aren’t used to being on your feet and even in comfy shoes, you will need a little cushion. It is worth the investment.
As a runner who writes, this has been one of the best self-gifts I have ever given to, well, myself. My recommendation would be to not wait as long as I did and get yourself one ASAP.