How to Sit at a Computer (New Year’s Resolution)

Odds are you haven’t thought much about your office chair or desk – or were even consulted when it was provided to you by your employer. That’s common actually, but you should do what you can to make your office desk fit your personal ergonomic needs.

If for instance, you use a computer extensively (as many of us do) for over 3 hours a day, many experts suggest you consider and research proper workstation layout and posture techniques to minimize your risk of developing hand/arm, shoulder, neck and back injuries. Insidiously, these injuries develop over time and may set in more quickly if you spend long hours sitting in front of your computer at work – and then likely, in front of your laptop/tablet at home as well.


Symptoms of a Poor Ergonomic Fit

Are you experiencing numbness in the fingers or other extremities? Sore wrists? Lower back pain? The telltale signs of redness, temporarily blurred vision and headaches that are the hallmark of eyestrain? Just general aches and pains in the neck, shoulders, back, thighs arms? What about lower legs – called ‘postural fatigue’ or persistent pain and discomfort in muscles, tendons and other soft tissue (repetitive strain injury)? These are all symptoms that may suggest you’re having some mismatch between how your body wants you to sit, and how you’re sitting.


What your workstation should be set up like

Many experts say that the best workstation is the one that lets you work in neutral (aka natural) postures that minimize strain on your body. Any workstation that forces your body into uncomfortable postures such as hanging over, slouching, straining or twisting should be avoided. There’s a belief that working for extended periods of time in these unnatural positions may be of some relation to musculoskeletal injury. A chair that is the wrong height or size, or doesn’t support your back – or incorrect height of work surfaces such as your desk may lead to these positions. An ideal work surface height is dependent on your height, the work you’re doing and what you’re using. You should be able to maintain a forearm to upper arm angle of between 70 and 135 degrees. Many people prefer a slightly higher desk for handwriting and a slightly lower surface for keyboarding. If you’re taller or shorter than the average height (of about between 5’8” and 5’10”) you may need to adjust your work surface height or seating arrangements.


Experiencing any pain symptoms?

When it comes to pain management, we encourage everyone to take their time and ensure they are getting the best in medical care. If you have any concerns regarding back or other pain, or simply are looking for a second opinion about your medical options, contact Coastal Orthopedics Sports Medicine & Pain Management to arrange a consultation with one of our qualified and caring staff.


Contact Coastal Orthopedics Today

If your having any pain due to how you sit in a chair, contact one of our four offices in the Florida area. We help with pain management and can help the pain. Call today at 941-792-1404.


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