According to a recent survey, the average person spends 5 hours and 41 minutes per day sitting at their desk.
That’s nearly one-quarter of your day slumped over a keyboard…
reaching for a mouse…
looking down at a monitor…
and generally slouching in a chair.
No wonder 80 percent of the world’s population will experience a back problem at some point in their lives. However, most people are surprised to discover that back pain at work and workplace injuries are not reserved for people who lift, bend, stretch, or climb. Poor posture from a non-ergonomic workstation can cause injury as well.
Fortunately, back pain relief may be found in the very place you work.
Set up your station with posture in mind.
Ideally, your workstation should be set up so you can sit with your upper back straight and your shoulders relaxed at your sides. The backrest of your chair should support the lower curve of your back with your hips as far back in the chair as possible. While sitting, your lower legs should be between 90 degrees and 110 degrees from the seat of your chair and resting either on the floor or on a foot rest. If you work at a computer, the top of your monitor should be at eye level or just below and your keyboard should be positioned so your arms are at a 90-degree angle to your body.
Sound a little confusing? Check out our workstation ergonomics visual guide.
Check your posture often.
If you must sit in a chair for the majority of your day, set an alarm on your watch or phone to vibrate every 20 minutes, telling you to check your posture. These little reminders help you take a few seconds to make adjustments to the way you are sitting and working. While these adjustments seem like overkill, they can make a world of difference in the way your body reacts to being at a desk all day.
Take frequent breaks.
There is science behind taking frequent breaks throughout the day, especially when you are working at a desk. Taking a small break once an hour dramatically improves your focus throughout the day. Prolonged sitting has also been linked to higher incidences of Type II diabetes, heart disease and various types of cancer. Sitting for hours on end also takes its toll on your skeletal system, especially weakening your core muscles that are so important to back health. If you spend the majority of your day sitting at a desk, stand up for 5-10 minutes once an hour. Take a lap around the office, get a drink of water or stretch at your desk to encourage blood flow and reset your working posture.
Just because you work in an office, at a desk, doesn’t mean you have to suffer from low back pain, or neck or shoulder pain. Download our free Guide to Office Ergonomics and give your home away from home a makeover for better back health. Have an ergonomic workstation and still experiencing back pain?
Give us a call for a consultation (or schedule online) to find out how chiropractic care can help relieve your pain without medication.