Millions of people work in an office environment, spending many of their hours behind a desk. But, is your job a pain…. Literally?
All that time at a desk might bring productivity, but it shouldn’t be to the detriment of backs, muscles and joints.
By analysing your office and workstation ergonomics, and perhaps making a few changes to them, you could save yourself and your staff from the unwanted aches and pains that can be associated with a desk job.
The average employee spends 5-8 hours sitting, but are the chairs they’re sitting on fit for purpose? If the answer is no, then it could be time to look at a quality ergonomic chair.
The right chair should be adjusted so that your feet sit flat on the floor and your arms come to a natural bend that’s even with the surface of the desk. Ideally, your chair will also have some form of lower back support and arm rests for comfort. By sitting up straight with your back against the back rest at all times, you’ll ensure an even distribution of pressure from your upper to lower back.
Next up is the placement of your computer monitor. Your monitor should be about an arm’s length away from you, with the top of the screen at or just below eye level. The brightness should be comfortable for you to look at without squinting or straining. If your office has windows, you may need to adjust your monitor for ideal brightness as the light changes throughout the day.
While typing, your wrists should be straight and lay flat as much as possible, rather than lifted from the keyboard or bent. Some people prefer to use a wrist support or ergonomic keyboard for this purpose. The mouse should be within easy reach and also be positioned so that the wrist is straight while using it.
Experts agree that taking short work breaks to stand or move around are good for your overall physical health. It’ll also get your blood flowing, making you more awake and reenergised to return to work. Sit stand solutions are now widely used in workplaces to allow workflow to continue without being static in an office chair.
The Health and Safety Executive offer guidelines with a useful pdf brochure. Following these few simple steps will not only help you and your staff be more productive at work, but more comfortable as well.