Which desk risers are best?
Standing desks are a great way to improve your posture and burn calories, but what if you’re hesitant to make the switch because you already own a traditional desk? Get a desk riser, which can be placed on your existing workspace and raised to the height of a regular standing desk.
These devices are sturdy, affordable and easy to use, but not all desk risers are made equal. For a top-rated riser with generous space and two levels, the Flexispot M3B 47-Inch Standing Desk Converter is a winner.
What to know before you buy a desk riser
Desk riser vs. standing desk
It’s no secret that a sedentary lifestyle can be detrimental to your health, but it can be hard to justify buying a standing desk when you have a perfectly good desk at home. Desk risers let you keep your existing desk and all of its storage, requiring only its surface to operate. These devices are more affordable than traditional standing desks and let you switch from standing to sitting at the simple pull of a lever. If you work at an office with an existing desk, you can easily carry your lowered riser from one location to another.
Desk risers aren’t perfect, however. Some of these desk converters have less surface area and can’t bear as much weight as conventional standing desks. Traditional standing desks may also feature wheels, shelves and hooks for hanging coats or purses. Ultimately, the decision between a desk riser and a standing desk is going to depend on your work situation and lifestyle.
Benefits of desk risers
- Working at a standing desk can burn more calories than sitting — up to 170 more calories in a single afternoon.
- When raised to the right height, a standing desk can improve your posture, thereby alleviating the back and neck pain caused by hunching over a traditional desk.
- Research has shown that using a standing desk after eating could reduce blood sugar levels.
- A sedentary lifestyle can lead to an increased risk of diabetes and heart disease, so working at a standing desk may lead to improved heart health.
- Some studies have shown that working at a standing desk for part of your day may reduce stress and fatigue, and could even contribute to your overall well-being.
- Research has also indicated that using a standing desk could make you more productive.
What to look for in a quality desk riser
Consider all of the items you’ll need to place on your desk’s surface when choosing a riser. Do you use one monitor or two? Do you need additional surface area for writing or drawing? Make sure that the riser is wide enough to hold all of your necessary items but not so big that it’s unstable on your desk.
Many desk risers have multiple levels: one for your computer monitors and one for your keyboard and mouse. This ensures that your head, neck, back and wrists are all positioned properly to maximize the benefits provided by a riser. Some high-end models might have even more levels for storage.
If you plan to take your desk riser from home to the office on a regular basis, look for one that’s constructed from durable yet lightweight materials. Most models weigh around 20-60 pounds, so plan accordingly.
How much you can expect to spend on a desk riser
The cost of a desk riser usually depends on its size and how well it’s built. Most people can expect to spend around $100-$300 for a reliable riser, a fraction of the cost of a traditional standing desk.
Desk riser FAQ
Are desk risers difficult to assemble?
A. Unlike conventional standing desks, desk risers usually require very little assembly beyond a screwdriver. Make sure you read the instructions when setting up your standing desk converter.
Do I need to wear special shoes when using a standing desk?
A. To get the most out of your desk riser, wear comfortable shoes with arch support and no raised heels. Running shoes and sneakers are usually a good choice.
What’s the best desk riser to buy?
Top desk riser
What you need to know: This popular standing desk riser has two levels and is large enough to hold multiple computer monitors.
What you’ll love: The spacious 47-inch surface area is enough to hold two 27-inch monitors. The height can be adjusted with one hand, and the control is smooth and precise. Users report a quick assembly and solid construction.
What you should consider: Weighing over 60 pounds, this desk riser is not particularly portable.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Top desk riser for the money
What you need to know: This affordable desk riser has a 32-inch surface area and a high-grade steel construction.
What you’ll love: Backed by a leading brand name, this versatile desk riser comes in white, black or dark walnut. The X-frame allows the converter to rise vertically in a single smooth motion and support up to 33 pounds of weight.
What you should consider: The additional level was too small to hold some users’ keyboard and mouse.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Worth checking out
What you need to know: This compact, 30-inch desk riser boasts an ergonomic shape and is constructed from real wood.
What you’ll love: A pneumatic spring controls the braking system, allowing for precise height adjustments. The keyboard platform is spacious and ergonomically designed to promote healthy posture. At only 30 pounds, this riser is more portable than many comparable models.
What you should consider: This desk riser doesn’t come with rubber feet, so it could scratch the surface of your desk.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Sign up here to receive the BestReviews weekly newsletter for useful advice on new products and noteworthy deals.
Patrick Farmer writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.
Copyright 2021 BestReviews, a Nexstar company. All rights reserved.