Whether your working from home or an office, we all know the importance of good posture and a well designed work station that is ergonomically designed for you. But how many of us actually get around to doing it?
Why is an ergonomic workstation important?
Incorrectly set up work stations alters your posture and can lead to:
Your head or chin jutting forward or rearward which can result in your shoulders rounding over, this results in a bend through your upper back increasing and your lumbar spine losing its natural forward curve. Hips, ankles, knees and wrists can then become compressed. Headaches, eyestrain and pain in your neck, back, shoulder, arm and wrist can result.
An experiment to demonstrate!
- Locate a heavy book and sit holding it near to your chest. It will rest easily because the position requires little effort.
- Next hold the book out at arm’s length. Notice how quickly the book feels heavier? Observe how fast your arms weaken and ache. Poor posture increases the strain through the spine and body in the same way.
Setting up your work station and position.
To check your posture, set yourself up as usual at your desk and ask someone to photograph you from the back, front and sides. Take the photo’s into us at your next chiro visit or your allied health provider for advice, or assess yourself against these guidelines:
- Face Forward and ensure the curve of your neck is neutral
- The top of you of your monitor should be at, or just below eye level and an arms length away
- Ensure your lower back is cushioned by lumbar support (via an ergonomic chair) or a lumbar cushion that maintains your natural forward curve.
- Your elbows, hips, knees and ankles need to rest at around 90 degrees. You may require an arm rest and foot stool.
- Your wrists should be supported and straight, and your mouse and keyboard within easy reach to enable this position.
Wherever you work from, the correct ergonomic set up is worth the effort. Reach out to us if you need some guidance, and remember the importance of not sitting for to long (more information on prolonged sitting can be found here).