Do you spend most of your day at a computer? Does your body hurt during or after a long day of work? Do you feel tension and muscle strain in your upper back and neck? These are common complaints I hear from clients who work on a computer daily. Proper ergonomics at your workstation is critically important to avoid injury to your back and neck.
In my office, not only do we correct the alignment of your spine, but we also discuss workplace ergonomics and make suggestions to improve the workstation. Below are some suggestions you can incorporate into your workspace.
- The seat height should be set to allow your feet to sit flat on the floor with your knees and hips at a 90-degree angle. In other words, your knees and hips should be at the same height. If this seems difficult, place a box or stool under your feet.
- Recline the back of your chair slightly beyond 90 degrees.
- Reduce the height of your arm rests low enough for your shoulder to be in a relaxed position.
- Many workstations require the user to reach for the mouse. This should never be the case. Position the mouse close enough to your body so that your elbow is aligned with your side.
- Ideally the keyboard should be placed in a keyboard tray. The tray should be positioned low enough to type without your shoulders being elevated.
- Place a pad in front of the keyboard for your wrists to rest on. Your wrists should sit slightly above your knuckles when you are typing.
- Position your seat so that it is at least 12 inches away from the screen.
- Position the monitor so that it is slightly above eye level. You should not be looking down at the monitor when you are using the computer.
Above are some general guidelines to address ergonomics in your office. Many of our clients at Precision Chiropractic & Massage Center are working professionals. Strain and discomfort in the upper and lower back are common symptoms they experience when they begin care. We help these individuals feel better by adjusting their spine and providing relief to their muscles through massage therapy. I also suggest simple stretching exercises that can be completed in the middle of the work day to relieve muscles tension.
When I begin working with a client, I believe it is critical to discuss the case from every possible angle. This means talking about exercise, sleep habits, nutrition, spinal care and workplace ergonomics. Often pain and discomfort are multifaceted and need to be approached as such. If you feel that your workplace ergonomics are causing you issues, please feel free to ask me for an ergonomic consultation at your next visit.