Ergonomics of the Home Office
Do you have a twinge in your neck that just won’t go away?
Has your back been sore for the last couple months?
It may be caused by your new work arrangements.
Many of us are now working from home in an effort to safeguard public health, however, this change may actually be detrimental to our bodies. Implementing ergonomic solutions will prevent musculoskeletal system damage and allow you to feel better and work more productively.
The Importance of Ergonomics
According to hundreds of case studies, ergonomics is an essential consideration in the workplace. Applying these principles saves money on healthcare costs, and improves productivity, quality of work output, engagement and overall comfort.
7 Ergonomics Dos and Donts
- DO stay hydrated and take a break for lunch.
- DON’T hunch over your desk or computer.
- DO ake breaks to get up and walk around throughout the day.
- DON’T let your feet dangle.
- DO sit in an office chair with adjustable features, if possible.
- DON’T work on your couch.
- DO use your home computer, rather than your laptop, if possible.
Inexpensive Ways to Improve the Ergonomics of Your Home Office
Sit on a pillow.
Sitting on a pillow, or even a folded blanket or towel, will go a long way towards making a hard chair more comfortable.
Prop up your laptop.
The top of your monitor should be just below your eye-level; therefore, laptops will never be ergonomically correct. Use books, magazines or boxes to prop up your laptop if you are doing a lot of reading. When you need to transition to typing, lower the laptop to a level so that your arms are bent at a 90-degree angle.
Change positions frequently.
Sitting in the same position or chair all day could lead to back, neck or shoulder pain, so it’s important to shift positions often. This could mean sitting or standing.
Elevate your feet.
Propping your feet up will increase your circulation and make you feel more comfortable.
Roll up a towel.
Need more lumbar support? No problem! Relieve lower back pain by rolling up a towel and placing it between your lower back and chair.
Take frequent breaks.
Stand up and take a walk around your home every 30 minutes or so. Regular exercise, even if it’s a simple walk around the living room, is an easy way to stay healthy and avoid pain.
Splurge on Comfort: Ergonomic Office Furniture and Accessories
Ready to invest some money into your home office? We’ve compiled a list of some must-haves to help you start your shopping list:
Electric Standing Desk with Programmable Memory
Easily transition from sitting to standing while you work with this adjustable desk.
SPACE Seating Professional AirGrid Dark Back and Padded Black Eco Leather Seat
With a 2-in-1 synchro tilt, built-in lumbar support, and adjustable height and arms, this office chair will help you stay comfortable.
Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000
This keyboard’s split ergonomic design promotes a natural hand, wrist and forearm positioning.
AmazonBasics Ventilated Adjustable Laptop Stand
Adjust the height of your laptop to promote optimal comfort with this stand. As an added bonus, it will also increase airflow to, and draw heat away from, the bottom of your laptop
Handstands Ergo-mat Memory Foam Mouse Pad
For just $12, you can add this ergonomic mouse pad to your home office. With its wedge shape and 4-degree slope, your wrist will stay aligned and comfortable as you work.
Relax The Back Self Inflating Back Rest
This back rest is portable lumbar support for your office chair, car, or any other seat! It provides support and pain relief for anyone suffering from lumbar pain, a herniated disc or sciatica.
Desk Exercises/At-Home Workouts
Working at a desk and in front of a computer wears down both the body and the mind. Taking time to stretch and incorporating exercise into your daily routine is a great way to counteract those effects, as well as boost your health and happiness. Check out the following resources for easy stretching, desk exercises, and at-home workouts:
- 25 Office Exercises: Easy Desk-Friendly Ways to Get Fit in 2020
- 10 Simple yet Effective Exercises You Can Do at Your Desk