The Ergonomics of Trump’s Workstation

In this series we look at the ergonomic set-up of ANY workstation. But the thing that we LOVE about this is that it’s entirely based on pictures. Here at ergonomicsHelp we strive to provide our readers and VIPs value with every post we do. So, what we are going to today is identify the ergonomic risk in a very notable person’s workstation (Mr. Donald Trump) and then offer a practical approach that would improve its ergonomics. We shine a light on aspects of workstation design that might not normally get any attention. Put another way, we want to highlight the negative affects of bad design to motivate our readers and VIPs to change their workstations for the better!

Here are some of our past posts:

So without further adieu let’s jump into today’s post. Today we focus on TRUMP. Let’s highlight ergonomic risk factors that are predisposing Mr. Trump to ergonomic risk. From our research we found that Trump has essentially 2 workstations:

  • The Main Workstation.
    • The key phrase to describe this desk is: The Paper Processing Headquarters. You might be asking yourself where his computer is. And, well, we will get into that in our next section.
    • This is Trump’s stereotypical desk. It is a large desk that is probably about 5cm/2.5″ above his resting elbow height. Albeit, this workstation should be considered to be pretty optimal for exactly what he is doing… processing paperwork.
    • Moving our attention to his chair, it appears to be a standard executive-type of chair with a lot of padding and non-adjustable armrests. For the ergonomics behind armrests, check out this post.

paperworktrump

  • The Secondary Working Area.
    • Trump’s main workstation did leave us a lot to ponder. Where the heck did he work on his computer? I mean, it is 2016 after all. This was such a intriguing question to us that we searched and search until we finally came across this post. For computer work, our best guess is that Trump uses a laptop computer tucked next to his main workstation and only takes it out when it is absolutely required.
    • So, the laptop is placed on top of his ‘Paper Processing Headquarter’ desk. This desk height is optimal for working with paper, not typing on a laptop. The laptop is much too high for Trump and for this reason he could likely have upper extremity discomfort. This could especially be true if he uses the laptop for any extended period of time.
    • Additionally, the height of the desk compounds the risks associated with prolonged laptop use since it is so much higher than what would be considered ergonomic.
    • For reference purposes, an ideal ergonomic posture is where: the typing surface is slightly below a bent/relaxed elbow position and the top of the computer screen is positioned slightly below neutral eye height. For these reasons, laptops usually need some sort of adaptations to be considered ergonomic to use for long periods of time.

Trump Laptop

Improving Trump’s Ergonomics.

Note: These suggestions are only practical if Trump uses his laptop for extended periods of time. There are 2 main areas that would improve the ergonomics of his set-up. These are to:

  1. Raise the screen of the laptop
    • The top of the screen must be raised to that its top is just slightly below a neutral eye height.
    • Options include: a laptop stand or an external monitor
  2. Lower the typing and mousing height
    • The neutral elbow height (elbows bent at about 90 degrees and relaxed to the side of the torso) should be slightly higher than the keyboard/mouse height
    • You can do this by attaching a keyboard tray with an external keyboard and mouse below the height of the desk or raising the chair high enough to do so.

There you have it! This is what we would do to improve the ergonomics of Donald Trump’s workstation. Sound familiar to you and not too sure what your next steps are?

 

Through the administration of countless assessments in both private and public sectors, Darcie has gained a wealth of knowledge and built a successful practice in the field of ergonomics. She has extensive expertise in conducting office ergonomics assessments in large scale workplaces for all different types of scenarios, from simple adjustments to incredibly complex cases. Darcie also has vast experience in delivering training presentations on the various aspects of ergonomics “best practices” in the workplace. Darcie is a Certified Professional Ergonomist through the Board of Certification in Professional Ergonomics, as recognized by the International Ergonomics Association. She also has a Masters of Science, specializing in ergonomics. A little known fact about Darcie is that she once scored from half, off a free kick, in a university varsity soccer (football) match!

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