Our computers are productivity powerhouses, allowing us to multitask, work on different documents and files, and potentially collaborate with anyone in the world. At the same time, how we use our computers can affect our health. Good posture, regular stretching, and adjusting furniture are effective ways to reduce and eliminate the chance of repetitive strain injury to the neck, back, and shoulders. Use these four practical tips for health computer use.
1. Watch Your Posture
Keep aware of your posture and check that you’re maintaining a good working posture on a periodic basis throughout the day. An ergonomic office chair can provide the body with the support it needs during long sitting periods in front of the computer. Suppliers ofoffice chairs in Sydney(or your city) are usually able to recommendations. The US Department of Labor Occupational Safety and Health Administration provide guidelines on good posture at work:
Back. Backs should be fully supported with lumber support.
Shoulders. Shoulders should be relaxed while upper arms hang naturally to the sides.
Elbows. Elbows should stay close to the body and be bent at an angle between 90 to 120 degrees.
Arms and hands. Forearms, wrists, and hands are straight, in-line, and parallel to the floor.
Knees, thighs, and hips. Thighs and hips should be supported by a well-padded chair, while knees should be about the same height as the hips.
Feet. Feet should be fully supported by the floor or a footrest where necessary.
The Australian Physiotherapy Association recommends sitting in comfortable and adjustable office chairs. Backrests can be adjusted to support the curve of the lower back. Suppliers ofoffice furniture in Sydneycan assist with finding the right office chair to suit your requirements.
2. Stretch Regularly
Most people will understand the benefits of regular stretching and movement:
Stretch at least once an hour, and move your back, arms, shoulders, and torso. Get up and take a quick walk away from your workstation or office on a regular basis.
Take micro-breaks every 10 to 15 minutes. In your seat, move your hands, fingers, shoulders, legs, and back. Raise your head, blink, and focus on some distant object in your office for 15 to 20 seconds.
3. Adjusting the Monitor
Viewing Distance and Angle
Keep the monitor at a comfortable viewing distance and angle. As a general rule of thumb, the monitor should be positioned at arm’s length (20 to 40 inches or 20 to 100 cm), with the top border of the screen just below your eye level, straight in front of you rather than to the side.
Keep curtains and blinds shut to reduce monitor glare. If there’s an overhead light source that is producing glare on the monitor, adjust your workstation or computer. Check that the monitor is not too bright or dim and adjust accordingly.
4. Keyboard, Mouse, and Phone
Use a normal sized keyboard if you use a notebook computer. Ergonomic keyboards with in-built curves can be used for extra comfort. The keyboard should be placed in a comfortable position that’s not too high or too low.
Keep the mouse in a straight position to reduce wrist strain, and use mouse pads with wrist rests for additional support. Frequently used equipment, such as printers, phones, or scanners can be placed close to the desk to reduce the need to overreach.