Do you sometimes experience feelings of stiffness and muscle pain after spending the entire day at your office? If so, you may not be taking the right posture at your workstation.
Office workers often complain of muscle discomfort and injuries. Fortunately, it is possible to prevent or minimize these problems simply by moving around, adjusting your workstation or changing your work habits.
Check the position of your body
When you work in the same position for an extended period of time, especially in an abnormal position, you may feel a sense of discomfort or persistent pain in the muscles, tendons and other soft tissues.
To remedy this problem, adopt a relaxed and natural position, with arms along the sides. When you are on the keyboard, the forearms must be parallel to the ground. As for the hands, they should form a straight line with forearms and elbows should be close to the body. Your head should be aligned with your body and slightly tilted forward. To get the right posture, adjust the height of your chair or workstation.
If you are using a computer monitor, the top of the screen should arrive at eye level or slightly below. This will allow your eyes to see the screen at a comfortable angle, and you will not have to tilt your head or contract the muscles of the back.
Your chair should support the lower lumbar curvature and be adjusted to a height so that your thighs are horizontal and so that your feet are laid flat on the floor. Make sure your work equipment is within reach. If your work takes you to make heavy use of the phone, using a headset can help you prevent neck problems.
Give your body some relief by lifting, stretching or changing positions on your chair during the day. You can perform some stretching exercises at the workstation. Whenever possible, take a break to avoid discomfort and fatigue.
Give yourself a good chair
A high quality, adjustable armchair can help you get good posture, promote good blood circulation and reduce muscle effort, as well as pressure on your back. All good stores now have ergonomic chairs that meet the needs of today’s office workers. Here are some good tips on buying an armchair:
- The chair will adapt to the needs of the user, not the other way around.
- The chair should be stable and fully adjustable when sitting.
- The seat tray and the kidneys should be covered with air permeable material.
- The height of the seat plate should be adjustable and the seat tray should allow weight transfer to the buttocks and not to the thighs.
- The backrest should be tiltable and adjustable in height and tilt according to the movement of the body for adequate lumbar support. A forward inclination of the seat plate can reduce stress on the body by allowing the backrest to move forward.
- Since most office work requires mobility, the wheelchair should be provided with wheels or wheels (hard wheels for soft floor coverings and soft wheels for hard floor coverings), as well as five legs for more stability.
- The front of the seat should be semi-rounded so as to clear the thighs and not to impede the blood circulation.
- If you are performing tasks requiring frequent lateral movements, choose a swivel chair.
- If you can not adjust the height of your chair or workstation to reduce tension below your thighs, use a footrest.
- This should be placed at a good angle and covered with a non-slip material, so as to provide good foot support.
Avoiding Repeated Tension Syndrome
Repetitive strain syndrome (RTS) is defined as any injury associated with repetitive movements. Even though at first you may not feel pain at work, you may feel it at night. Early symptoms of STR include pain in the muscles and joints, stiffness in the fingers, hands and neck. If you have these symptoms, do not ignore them since this syndrome can be easily treated at the beginning.
The vast majority of computer-related injuries are attributable to keyboards. In this regard, wrist pain is probably the most common repetitive strain injury. To prevent these muscle pains, the arms should be along the sides, and the forearms, parallel to the floor.
Do not force uncomfortable and abnormal positions on your arms and wrists. You could create inflammations of the fragile muscles, which will exert pressure on the median nerve, which passes through the carpal tunnel (a narrow passage between the forearm and the hand).
Here are some symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome: tingling and numbness of the hand and fingers; Sharp pain in the wrist and forearm; And difficulty in clenching fists or seizing small objects. It is important to recognize these symptoms early. Untreated, carpal tunnel syndrome can cause severe discomfort, intense and prolonged pain, or even loss of use of a hand, which may even require surgery.
Anyone who is asked to sit for a good part of the day should be aware of these injuries and take the necessary steps to avoid them.
When you spend a good part of the day on the keyboard, keep your forearms, wrists and hands in a rectilinear position.