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4 Office Ergonomics Tips To Avoid Pain

On February 9, 2018  Category:  In the Office, Wellness

Working in an office may seem harmless, but musculoskeletal injuries can develop over time, especially in those who spend the majority of their day sitting in front of a computer. This seated position tightens some muscles while weakening others and over time can lead to postural deviations, muscle imbalance, and joint pain.

The best ways to avoid these symptoms are by:

1) Moving your joints through their complete range of motion (ie. joining in for 5 Minute Hit), and
2) Ensuring you are seated with proper posture.

 

1. ADJUST THE MONITOR

If you experience neck pain or headaches during the workday, your monitor may be to blame. A screen that is too far away, too low, or too high can cause your head to push forward, leading to postural deviations, tight muscles, and cervical pain.

  • Your monitor screen(s) should be no more than one arm’s length away when you are sitting comfortably.
  • The top of your monitor(s) should be at eye height.
  • Bonus: Aim to keep your ears in line with your shoulders to promote good posture.

 

2. FIX YOUR CHAIR

  • The lumbar support should rest in the natural curve of your lower back.
  • Position the chair back completely upright.
  • Adjust the seat height so that your thighs are parallel to the floor and knees rest at 90 degrees.
  • Armrests can be burnt at the stake; alternatively, position them so they are flush with, or a 1/4 inch below, your elbows.

 

3. CHECK YOUR DESK

  • Your desk height should work synergistically with your chair height
  • Raise or lower your desk until your elbows can rest comfortably at 90 – 120 degrees.
  • Position your keyboard and mouse near the edge of your desk. You should be able to access these while keeping your elbows at their 90 – 120 degree angle.

Troubleshooting

If you unable to change the level of your desk, instead raise your chair to the necessary height and achieve proper leg/thigh position by resting your feet on a small stool.

 

4. SIT UPRIGHT

No amount of fiddling with your monitor or adjusting your chair will matter if you fail to sit upright. While you may think slouching to one side and using the armrest as a crutch looks cool, you are doing an incredible amount of damage to your body.

This incorrect seated posture puts you at an increased risk for muscular imbalance, skeletal deviations, recurring injuries, and nerve and tendon damage. 

These changes may not feel comfortable at first, but over time your postural muscles will strengthen and sitting upright will become second nature.

Yours in health,