What a whirlwind of change over the past few weeks!
Since many office-based workers now have the ability and/or requirement to “Work from Home” I thought I would pass on some helpful ergonomic opportunities to improve your new or existing workplace comfort from your remote office location.
- Consider setting up a laptop docking station that may include a commercial laptop riser or reams of paper/books/telephone books (we know you’re not using those phone books anymore haha) on a table/desktop to allow you to view your monitor with a neutral neck position (not looking up or down at your monitor screen)
- Keep monitor at roughly arms reach (14-20″) away to minimize eye strain
- Keep the monitor perpendicular to external lighting sources to minimize glare; use antistatic cleaning products to improve reading surface and minimize eyestrain
- Attach an external keyboard and mouse roughly at elbow height, with wrists in a fairly straight position with their use
- Use a chair that allows roughly 90 degrees of hip, knee and ankle bend and provides support for your back and foot support on the floor or a footrest. Consider rolling a towel to support your low back curvature.
- Consider using a document holder if you are frequently typing from paper copies on your table top. This will greatly improve risk of developing neck pain from frequent neck bend and rotation of this task.
- Avoid setting the laptop on your lap on a soft surface ie. pillow, as it may limit airflow risking overheating. Use of a lap tray for brief use should allow the ability to keep your wrists neutral when typing and mousing; keep your back support and feet stabilized.
- TAKE BREAKS REGULARLY every 20-30 minutes to move, whether it is getting up from your workstation, performing relief stretches, or visual relief stretches (look at an object across the room and blink several times).
If you have any questions regarding Office Ergonomics, feel free to contact us at OSI Physical Therapy (651) 275-4706.
Lisa Hanselman, OTR/L, BA
Occupational Health Specialist