Do you spend your work day behind a desk? If you answered yes you are like millions of Americans toiling away behind a desk every day. You may think that since it is not a physically demanding job that there are no physical side effects of working at a desk. Unfortunately, that is not necessarily true, as most office workers may start to suffer shoulder, back, and joint pain. With a few simple tips and tricks, you can sit your way to a more comfortable lifestyle.
It all starts with your chair. Choose a chair that conforms to your natural spinal curve. Sit up straight and adjust your chair height so that your feet are resting flat on the ground. Adjust the armrest height so your shoulders are relaxed and arms rest gently at a natural angle.
Keyboard and mouse
Place your mouse within easy reaching distance, and on the same surface as your keyboard. While typing and using your mouse, your wrists should be straight, with your hands level to your elbows. If your job involves repetitive typing, try setting up keyboard shortcuts to minimize strenuous repetitive motion. If possible, invest in an ergonomic keyboard.
If using the phone is integral to your job, make sure it is close at hand, and if possible use a headset. Avoid constantly cradling the phone between your shoulder and ear, as this places unneeded stress on your neck.
If your desk is too high, requiring you to raise your chair, get a footrest so that your feet can rest flat. If a footrest is unavailable try a small stool, or a stack of paper or books.
The best monitor placement is directly in front of you, at eye level, and an arm’s length away. Avoid straining your neck to look up or down at a monitor.