How To Use a Lap Desk

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Many of us love interacting with our laptop computers while sitting in bed or on our favorite couch. Although this habit is not always comfortable, many prefer it to a desk. Perhaps you’ve just started working from home and you don’t have a desk setup, or you don’t have a television but love streaming movies in bed. Whatever the case, you’d undoubtedly benefit from using a lap desk.

What is a lap desk?

A lap desk is usually a stable surface you can place on your lap and is mostly portable. You’ll find different models and brands, but they’re typically made of PVC, plastic, rubber, bamboo, or wood, among others. Most portable laptop tables are lap desks.

Laptop disadvantages 

Laptops and tablets are more popular than desktop computers for obvious reasons. Although portability and mobility are distinct benefits, they do come with some disadvantages.

  • Using a laptop on the run means you’ll often be working on a bed, couch, or chair with the device on your lap… as its original name so aptly hints at its purpose. But with a laptop in your lap, your forearm movement is inhibited as you must also balance the device.
  • A trackpad is suitable for many, but it’s inefficient for most and can slow down progress significantly. Sadly, with a laptop in your lap, you can’t readily use a mouse.
  • Poor posture is the most detrimental aspect of a laptop. You often sit with bent wrists, curved spine, and your head lowered, creating neck strain. You also risk headaches, back pain, and carpal tunnel syndrome that creates pain due to nerve compression in the wrists.
  • You will also learn quickly how hot a laptop can become, and it may burn your skin. After continuous exposure to this heat, you could develop ‘toasted skin syndrome’, which is not a joke. The scientific name is Erythema Ab Igne, and it’s a rash or hyperpigmented skin caused by heat.
  • Although placing a pillow under the laptop seems to be a good solution, it would still not be balanced, and the lack of airflow could make your computer overheat.

A laptop desk or tray will solve all the problems mentioned above since it addresses all areas of discomfort or adverse effects on your device.

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Lap desks should be as portable as your laptop. Look for a lightweight model so you can carry it around effortlessly. They are small enough to transport in hand luggage, and you can readily store it away in overhead or cabin luggage compartments.


Ergonomics is the science of arranging an environment to suit an individual’s needs, improving productivity, and simultaneously reducing human discomfort and possible injury.

When compared to original desktop computers, laptops are not designed ergonomically. For instance, the keyboard forces incorrect wrist posture – mainly when you’re not working at a desk.

A lap desk will elevate your device and improve your posture, reducing neck and wrist strain.


The human body doesn’t flourish when held in the same position for extended periods. A reputable lap desk will ensure your comfort for longer than the typical 15 to 30 minutes in the same posture.

The stable surface offers support and eliminates distractions from trying to balance your laptop on your lap. Lap desks also absorb heat and prevent the skin issues mentioned.

Lap desks are quick to set up. All you need to do is rest your laptop on it. Using a larger lap desk will make it possible to use your mouse and will provide space for pens, coffee cups, and other work paraphernalia.


The reasons for using a lap desk are clear, and the best option will:

  • Be big enough to fit any size laptop
  • Have a mouse pad area
  • Have proper ventilation to prevent your device from overheating
  • Provide space for your phone and other necessities
  • Won’t be slippery, so your device slides around at the slightest movement.

A lap desk will improve your working conditions. So if you experience pain or discomfort and fatigue, you’ll want to consider making a change. Your workspace should provide comfort regardless of where you sit or stand, and your health is always your top priority.

Start shopping for your lap desk today.

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