If you’re reading this from either your smartphone or laptop, stop whatever you’re doing. Now, focus your awareness on your entire body. How’s your posture? Is there any pain or discomfort that you’re not aware of?
With the rapid rise of modern technology, accompanied by the increase in flexible working arrangements, more and more entrepreneurs and employees are working from home offices.
If you’re someone who spends most of your day sitting behind a desk, chances are you know how terrible it can make you feel at the end of the day. Here’s how to exercise proper ergonomics in your workspace to keep you comfortable and injury-free, all while maximizing your productivity.
1. Maintain Neutral Posture
A neutral posture is when your spine is in a state of natural alignment. When the spine is not aligned from slouching or injury, it may cause spinal compression, nerve pinching, and muscle tension.
To better visualize this idea, imagine a straight line that connects the dots on your head, elbows, hips, and knees. When you are standing straight from head to toe, it means you are in a neutral posture.
But what about when sitting? A neutral posture at work can also be achieved even if you sit behind a computer. Here are some guidelines on how to improve your posture while sitting:
- Keep your computer monitor at eye level
- Pull your shoulders back and keep your back flat against the chair
- Rest your feet on the ground, forming a 90-degree angle
- Sit up straight and avoid slouching
Proper work ergonomics is built around the neutral posture concept. By maintaining a neutral posture as often as possible, you can reduce your chances of injury and developing chronic pain. There are many tools that can help you achieve this, which brings us to...
2. Invest in Good Furniture
To say that your chair is your ultimate office companion is an understatement. This amazing apparatus supports your back, your hips, and most importantly, your posture.
Think about it, if you are going to spend a lot of time working sitting behind a desk, the least you can do is to invest in a reliable ergonomic office chair.
Sitting at a desk for extended periods of time can put extra tension on your spine and lower back, which can lead to unwanted physical problems in the future. The combination of ergonomic office chairs, desks, and office accessories will help promote better posture, giving your body the balance and support it needs.
3. Take Frequent Breaks
At the end of the day, you have to understand that human beings are not designed to sit down all day. We are created to move around and stay active.
No matter how ergonomic your workspace is, physical activity is the only thing that can combat the health issues of a sedentary lifestyle in the long run.
Pro Tip: A good rule of thumb is to get up and move for every 30 minutes you sit down, whether you’re stretching, getting a glass of water, or just simply walking outside for some fresh air, it’s important to keep yourself active to stay engaged and productive at work.
And there you have it, three simple tips to exercise proper ergonomics, both at home and the office.
Ultimately, your goal is to work with comfort without adding unnecessary strain to your muscles and joints. Remember, that you are your greatest investment. Make sure to take care of your body and workspace while eliminating ergonomic hazards.
If you follow our simple recommendations, you’ll be sure to have a wonderful day at your home office, every day.
About the Author
Jason Tjugito is the Editor-in-Chief for officesolutionpro.com, a website dedicated to office ergonomics and productivity. He is a copywriter, translator and a location independent entrepreneur.