The Importance of Ergonomics
Ergonomics has quickly become an important factor for office based businesses around the world. The habits of office workers have a cumulative effect, as these habits are maintained for 8 hours a day, 5 days a week. When I first entered the work force in 1997, I had a healthy back. I was a college wrestler, and anything that I wanted to do physically, I could do. As far as I knew, my body had no limitations. But once I started working for 40 hours a week, sitting at a desk, typing away at a computer, it was this lack of movement that started to really wreak havoc on my back.
I learned the hard way just how important it is to consider ergonomics. Only when I got my first ergonomic furniture did things start to turn around. Here’s some recommendations that you can use to save yourself the hardship of recovering from the effects of bad posture.
1. Get an ergonomic chair
An ergonomic furniture that helps to foster a healthy posture will save you from pain and injury in the long run. If you’re used to sitting with poor posture, at first an ergonomic chair is going to be uncomfortable. The goal is to get you to sit upright and straight so the bones of the spine can align on top of themselves, this requires a little work from the muscles, which you might not be used to. This certainly was a challenge for me when I first started taking care of my back.
One of the most popular ergonomic chairs is the kneeling chair, also known as the knee stool. The kneeling chair is designed to give more space to the hips which provides relief to the muscles of the lower back. Highly recommended for those having a hard time remembering to sit up straight and who have pain when doing so.
2. Position your monitor
You want your eye level to be directly in-line with the middle of your monitor. This prevents your neck from creeping forward and your upper back rounding. My chiropractor told me that this is the easiest, and quickest fix I could make to my office setup. And its true. I felt better after a week of making this simple change.
3. Take frequent breaks
When I was an athlete, aside from a few bruises and scrapes, I never had any pain in my body. Definitely not anything skeletal related. It was sitting at the computer in a fixed position that really started to mess up my body. I started setting a computer alarm to remind me to get up, walk, and stretch every 30 minutes. This has been extremely helpful in staying loose and pain free.