- Supports wide laptops
- Ergonomic design standards
- Cooling functionality built-in
- Manufacturer warranty
- Sturdy steel design
- Integrated cable management
- Cools heating laptop
- Easy to take on the road
- Holds most PC and Mac laptops
Laptop stands are a great addition to your desk. You will no longer have to slouch in your chair or strain your neck when looking at your laptop. They also create space by being able to store things below the stand. And finally, they make it very easy to switch your vision between your monitor and laptop. This is because laptop stands put your laptop at an equal height. We reviewed the best laptop stands for desks.
Guide To Buying A Laptop Stand For Desks
If you want to reduce neck pain and eye fatigue while using your laptop or monitor, you would be wise to buy a laptop stand. Commonly a laptop stand is also referred to as a laptop riser. Both names refer to the same type of product. These products add instant value, and perform a necessary job to enhance the quality and functionality of your workspace. By placing your laptop on a laptop stand, you can save space, elevate the height of your laptop, and open up new viewing angles while working. There are even more benefits which we will now explore.
How a Laptop Stand Will Help You
A popular and common laptop stand consists of a stand you can simply place on your desk, and place your laptop above it. It is common that a laptop stand will provide breathable space for the bottom of your laptop, so that your computer does not overheat. This type of design is particularly important for older laptops. Some laptop stands have a circular design and others have open space by which the bottom of your laptop can vent and exhale hot air.
All of the best laptop stands for desks share a few core common features. They tend to be lightweight, minimalistic, and designed to elevate your laptop at least a few inches above your desk. Because nearly all laptop stands range in price from $40 to $70, there are variables other than price that you should consider when making a laptop stand purchase. I will explore these variables which include design, space saving mechanics, and angles that a laptop stand provides.
Laptop Stands: Core Benefits
One of the most important variables is the angle at which your laptop stand will hold your laptop.
Some of the best laptop stands for desks are flat and you place your laptop directly on top of it. Other laptop stands project your screen at an angle, and this changes the way you view your laptop screen. Another important variable that distinguishes laptop stands is the material in which they are made. Some laptop stands, especially cheaper models, are made of plastic. More expensive laptop stands, in contrast, are usually made of metal alloys or steel. A final key difference is how a laptop stand can help you organize the cables that go into or out of your computer. Higher laptop stands also include cable management functionality. Lower laptop stands are simple boxes that you place your laptop above.
Today, essentially all laptop stands are light, durable, incompatible with your laptop. So it is common for people to make purchasing decisions largely driven by cost aesthetics. The Neetto Laptop, for example, resembles a small table that you can place on your desk. This stands in stark contrast to the Griffin Elevator Stand, which looks like an extension of Apple designed products. In both examples, the functionality offered is very similar. But the look, feel, and design standards vary greatly.
Why I use a Laptop Stand
I use a Roost Laptop Stand because it is adjustable up to one foot in height. This enables me to alter my viewing angle throughout the day. This helps me stay active and ergonomically centered. I love it as well because it is light and easy to move. This allows me to take it from one part of my home office to another desk or a table in another room. For many years I didn’t use a laptop stand and didn’t understand their core benefits. Once I started using one I can’t imagine not working with one in the future. This is because a laptop stand enhances my productivity, and will enhance yours too. I don’t type or often use the keyboard on my MacBook Pro. Plus, I have an external monitor, keyboard, and mouse. I place my computer on the stand and off to the side of my desk.
Protecting My Laptop
I then project and can glance at my computer but primarily rely on my monitor. Without a laptop stand, this type of work-flow setup would not be possible. Instead, I would still be cramming my hands onto the built in keyboard of my computer. Moreover, I care about preserving my computer especially because I paid a lot of money for it. In particular, I want to help my computer avoid situations where it might overheat. A laptop stand, among all of its key benefits, performs this task the best. By elevating my computer above the desk, I can keep my computer at a cooler temperature. This means I don’t hear the fan or the keyboard heat up. And lastly, if I spill liquid on my desk, it won’t ruin my computer. This is very important to me and a nice security blanket.
Overheating even more pronounced for older computers. I sometimes take out my 2014 Dell Notebook to look at old photos I have yet to transfer to the web. After only a few minutes on my desk, the machine slows down and starts to overheat. But when I use my laptop stand, I get a better and different computing experience. The machine stays cooler and performs better.
Ironically members of my family have older computers and frequently ask to borrow my stand. While I believe they should (and will) buy their own one day (or so I hope) a laptop stand is so light it can be picked up with a few fingers and moved and shared readily. A laptop stand therefore also makes for a nice shared gift. It adds instant value, will improve your work experience, and costs you so little. So what are you waiting for, go get one already!
Health Benefits Of A Laptop Stand
Would you be excited to learn that there is a solution for that annoying neck and shoulder pain you get from sitting at your laptop and working all day? Good – because there is! The solution is actually really simple and you’re going to wonder why you hadn’t made this change sooner. The solution is a laptop stand!
Most people feel pain in their upper shoulder region or in their upper back between their shoulder blades. One potential and likely reason for this is screen positioning. The screen you’re staring at for hours on end is in a position that propagates detrimental postural habits.
Positioning Your Laptop Stand
Ideally you want the top of your screen to be at about eye-level and positioned at about an arms length distance away from your face. When you do this, your spine and the muscles in your neck, shoulders, and upper back can maintain an ideal position while you work. When your spine is positioned optimally, your vertebrae (the bones that make up your spine) are stacked in a way where they most align like perfectly fitting puzzle pieces. Although the structures that make up and support your spine naturally deteriorate with age, this process can be sped up by perpetual excess stress.
Maintaining Proper Posture
However, it is not possible for your spine to hold the weight of your head without the support of your muscles. Your muscles must consistently contract to enable you to sit up tall and maintain proper posture. When your muscles are at their ideal length, that is when they are the strongest. Think of your muscles like a spring – if a spring is constantly held in a stretched position, overtime its coils will loosen and its ability to spring and produce power will also decline. This is similar to how your muscles weaken over time when they are constantly stretched in order to look at a screen that is poorly positioned; the only difference is our bodies are smart!
Your muscles will try to keep working and supporting. They do so by producing little anchoring points within your muscles in an attempt to produce more strength. However, this mechanism is a temporary solution with detrimental, long-term consequences. We can perceive this happening when we feel pain in the muscles that are being stretched. These are like “knots” when we try to massage out the pain.
What Else You’ll Need For An Ergonomic Workstation
As I mentioned, laptop stands that only have a tilting feature and not a vertical height adjustment feature may negatively impact how you use your mouse and keyboard so that your shoulders, arms, and wrists are not in an optimal position. In order to address this, it is best to purchase a keyboard and mouse that can rest on a lower surface than your screen. Your mouse and keyboard should be placed in a position that will promote your shoulders relaxing down away from your ears, your elbows bending approximately 90 degrees, and your wrists resting in a neutral position.
To further promote optimal postural positioning, it is also important to have a supportive chair so that your whole spine is supported and you are more easily and comfortably able to maintain good posture. A good chair is one that has full back support, ample cushioning, armrests, and is height adjustable. To fully benefit from an ergonomic office chair, you must keep your whole back in contact with the chair, keep your elbows lightly resting on the armrests, and keep both feet resting flat on the floor (see image below).
More Immediate Pain Relief Solutions
After making these beneficial changes to your workstation, it may take some time for your body to heal and for you to fully reap the benefits of your new at-home office setup. If you’re still experiencing neck and shoulder pain throughout your work day, here is a list of some simple ways to relieve the pain:
- Take a 2 minute standing break as soon as you start to feel any pain come on.
- Perform this 5 minute neck and shoulder stretch routine. If you don’t have a full 5 minutes to spare, complete as much of it that you have time for: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yt3CpkmFAfc.
- Place a neck and shoulder ice pack on for 20 minutes.
- Use a trigger point release tool to massage out any tender points. Here is a video that demonstrates how to use a Theracane to work through painful trigger points/adhesions in your muscles (watch from 1:07-3:15 to see how to work through the most common areas of pain): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ASsIQpBCwHU.
I hope this article will help you create a work environment that allows you to be pain-free, and sets you up for long-term success and health.