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Workplace Ergonomics

For most of us gone are the days, of hard labor on the farm. It may sound like a blessing but given the general condition of health of people around us, it looks like things could have been better. Our regular day jobs require us to sit in a chair for long hours, and the stress and time schedules leave little time for gym and regular workout. Improper sitting positions, cause further problems, and the stiffness and soreness in the buttocks, shoulders, and neck are all too common for the modern men and women. A little awareness about proper ergonomics and healthy practices at work may help with these annoying and avoidable problems.

1.The Chair

Your chair should support the lower back and neck more than anything else. In fact, if these two parts are taken care of your whole body will automatically align to the best most comfortable sitting position. Compared to popular belief sitting upright may in itself not be possible for longer periods of time, but if the lower back is in a single position, it is unlikely that you will have any back pain. Further, the neck needs rest too. Stretching the neck in all the directions sometimes is an absolute necessity.

2.The Desk

The best way to check if your desk is in the best ergonomic situation or not is to sit in the most comfortable ergonomically correct position and see if you can rest your elbows on the desk and type or write, etc., without any stress in your arms. We tend to not realize this stress at all, even if it is there, and in a longer period, tennis elbow, sore shoulders and painful wrist make us realize that we should have been more conscious and could have prevented these problems.

  1. Position Your Workstation

Sitting upright is not synonymous with sitting stiffly. Sitting upright means sitting straight with your back getting the support it needs. A simple adjustment should go something like this

  • Adjust the height of your chair so that while you’re typing your elbows can easily rest on the desk.
  • Once you have decided this height, sit in the chair and push yourself toward the back of the chair until your lower back is set against the backrest.
  • Look straight ahead and see if your computer or laptop is at level with your eyes, without you having to raise or lower your neck.
  • Make the required adjustments and if not always, try to sit in this position for as long as you can.
  1. Other healthy practices

We all know how important it is to take regular breaks, but it can get a little difficult to remember to do so. The best way to remind yourself to take short frequent pauses is to fill a bottle of water and keep it on your desk. Every time you look at it, take a sip. It is just as simple as that. This little act of lifting the bottle tilting your neck and drinking will give you the frequent stretching you need. Other than which the regular toilet breaks you will be forced to take with the increased water intake are not a negative either. Water should serve many purposes by keeping your vitals busy and active and keeping your system clean.

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