The 10 Best Lap Desks
This wiki has been updated 29 times since it was first published in April of 2015. Whether you're watching a movie, updating your social media accounts, surfing the internet, playing video games, or actually working, you might as well be comfortable. There's no need to be restricted to a regular desk or table if you have one of these lap desks, which let you use your tablet or laptop in a comfy chair, on the sofa, or even in bed. They're great for eating and reading books, too. When users buy our independently chosen editorial selections, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki. If you'd like to contribute your own research to the Wiki, please get started by reviewing this introductory video.
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January 17, 2020:
Even though it's handsome and made from eco-friendly materials, we're concerned about how easily the Songmics Adjustable gives its users splinters — so we have opted to remove it at this time. The LapGear Schoolhouse, though unique, is just too heavy for day-to-day use, so we removed it, as well. Instead, we like the LapGear Designer and its range of fun fabrics. It's not so big that you can't carry it along with you, but not so small that you'll feel cramped working on it. For a simpler version, we still like the Sofia & Sam All-Purpose, but note that the padding for your legs isn't as soft as on some models. If you need adjustability, you might take a look at the Mind Reader Lap Holder or the Executive Office Aluminum. The former won't accommodate a mouse, while the latter will. There's also the Avantree Neetto. It's not going to win any style awards, but the simple, straightforward design makes it a go-to for many. Finally, we kept the Sofia & Sam Multitasking Memory Foam thanks to its integrated reading light and tablet slot. Unfortunately, though, the mouse pad is very slick.
Why Using A Lap Desk Is Beneficial
A lap desk can provide a buffer between your legs and the computer.
Sitting at a computer for extended periods of time can cause many back and neck issues, some of which come from slouching. Lap desks offer placement versatility. Many have adjustable legs and can be put on any surface, elevating them to a more comfortable height. Those who do want to put a laptop in their laps have probably found that computers can get very hot. Letting an overheated computer be in direct contact with one's skin for extended periods of time can result in several skin irritations. A lap desk can provide a buffer between your legs and the computer.
Research has also shown that facing a window can boost productivity better than facing a wall. Moving an entire desk to a window is not always an option, but working on a lap desk gives users mobility so they can work anywhere. A lap desk gives users the option to even work on their computers outdoors; a change of scenery can boost morale and energy, too. Those who live in very small apartments may not want to fill precious real estate with a full-sized desk. Using a lap desk instead, which can easily fold up and be stowed away, can save a lot of room.
Those who often travel for work likely bring their computer on airplanes, trains, and buses. But the folding tray tables on these forms of transportation can be covered in bacteria that most people don't want touching their computer. A lap desk provides a sanitary place to put your computer at any time.
Bonus Features Of Lap Desks
Some lap desks have, as previously mentioned, legs with adjustable height. Many also have a table top with an adjustable angle for a totally adjustable viewing experience. Those who use their laptops to watch movies or view photos will greatly benefit from this feature. Those who like to use wireless mice should look for a lap desk with an integrated mouse pad on either side for left- or right-handed individuals. Some even provide part of a full-size desk experience with side storage pouches for items like paper and pens. A few also feature an extra-wide table top and curved shape. These offer enough desk space to take notes on paper next to the computer, enhancing the full-size desk feel.
Some lap desks have, as previously mentioned, legs with adjustable height.
Lap desks can be quite comfortable, too. Many have padded wrist guards to reduce pressure and boost circulation on the wrists. Some even feature dual-bolster pillows that conform to the user's lap, reducing pressure points on the thighs and knees. Memory foam technology has been integrated into the bottom of many models, too.
People who work late but don't want to disturb their roommates or family members with bright lights should get a lap desk with a built-in LED light. These environmentally friendly bulbs do a wonderful job at illuminating the desk while leaving the surrounding areas dark. People who need a true multi-purpose accessory can get a lap desk with a USB charging port and phone dock. Those who like to work and eat in bed will appreciate lap desks that double as food trays. These are usually made from moisture-resistant and antimicrobial bamboo.
How A Lap Desk Helps With Office Work Ergonomics
When sitting in a chair with a lap desk, computer users should try to hold their posture such that their hips, shoulders, and even ears align with the vertical parts of the chair. This ensures they are sitting up straight, which is not only good for the back but can even boost happiness.
It's also important that the weight of your arms is always supported.
If the lap desk is height adjustable, arrange it such that the typing surface is about elbow level. When your wrists and arms are perpendicular to the floor, this will put the least pressure on joints. One of the benefits of using a lap desk is that a person can sit in any chair they want. Choose one that has a back rest. This will allow you to lean back, which is important for lumbar support.
It's also important that the weight of your arms is always supported. If they aren't, they will inevitably pull down on your neck and shoulders and cause you pain. Many lap desks are designed with extra wide wrist and armrests for this exact reason. Leaning towards a computer or reaching for it can be problematic. Any time a person transfers most of their weight in one direction for an extended period of time, this can cause spinal problems. Working on a lap desk lets you keep the computer as close as possible and avoid leaning.
If there is not enough room underneath a desk to place your knees and thighs, this too will force you to lean forward. There is never an issue of under-desk space with a lap desk. Screen glare often causes people to crane their neck for a better view. Lap desks with an adjustable angle can help reduce glare.
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