So, you use your computer pretty heavily, sit for hours in front of the monitor as you work, play, or browse the web. However, being hunched over your short desk is not exactly comfortable. Is there a way to raise your monitor to sit more comfortably?
What is a monitor stand?
A monitor stand, (also called a mount, arm, or bracket) is a device that holds the monitor of your computer at a certain height or angle, usually higher than the default position.
As you can probably guess by the variety of names, there are many different types of stands depending on the size of the monitor you need to hold up, the angles you want, and the type of desk it stands on.
Some stands and wall mounts require a bit of installation. You will have to drill the bracket onto your desk or wall and then put the monitor into it. However, most others are pretty simple to use.
They usually come in two flavors, a stand held in place on your desk by a clamp and mounts that are mini desks for your monitor. The disadvantage of the latter is that you can´t adjust their angle, and you can barely move the height, but they tend to be cheaper.
Stands mounted with clamps that secure them to your desk tend to be more versatile and robust. The grip holding it in place is quite strong, so there´s little danger of knocking your monitor to the floor. Plus, they usually have a metal or plastic "arm" that you can move and adjust until the monitor is just where you want it.
But why would you want to move the monitor?
Why you should use a monitor stand.
Using a monitor stand is more ergonomic.
Ok, it´s not more ergonomic per se, but it can be if you adjust it right. As we discussed in our previous article about back and wrist pain, it´s better for your body if you sit upright while using a computer.
One key aspect of maintaining a good posture is keeping your back straight. If you have to keep looking down and twisting your neck to read the screen, chances are that your posture is no good. Therefore, a stand allows you to adjust the height of the monitor so that it can be somewhere near eye level and you can read without having to twist your neck.
Of course, a monitor stand is not the only way to fix this issue. A taller table or shorter chair can also work to bring your eye level near your monitor, but most of the time, a mount will be a cheaper alternative if you are looking to improve the ergonomics of your computer station.
This even works with laptops and notebooks, which are probably the worst offenders when it comes to uncomfortable postures. If you are tired of hunching over your laptop, there are specialized mounts that can hold it in place.
It lets you use multiple monitors.
If you want to use two or three monitors at the same time, your desk is probably going to run out of space on where to put them, or at least, you´ll have to place them at very awkward angles.
So, if the idea of having multiple monitors is enticing, either because it makes work easier or to have an even greater "big" monitor to enjoy games on, you will need to buy a couple of stands.
With a monitor stand, all you have to do is install them. Put the screens next to each other and line them up however you want to use them. There are even specialized mounts made to hold up two monitors at once, so you don´t have to buy extra.
They free up space on your desk.
This applies more to the "arms" than the stands, but using them can free up a bit of space in your desk "under" your monitor. It´s not much but it can help you organize, and your desk can look a bit better with the extra space.
They let you use your monitor as a TV.
Another use for a monitor stand doesn´t involve your computer or desk at all. Some monitors can be hooked up to a Chromecast or a gaming console like the Nintendo Switch. If you have a stand, you can prop your monitor up on any table and use it instead of a TV. It´s probably not as big, but it should do the work at just a fraction of the cost.