How do I set my workstation up?

WORKSTATION SETUP

How much attention do you pay to your body whilst busy at your desk at work?Having your workstation well setup to support you in good spinal posture will reduce the load on your back and neck and therefore allow your body to perform better outside of work. 

Sitting for long periods can have many negative effects on your health, however it is not always easy in today's busy lifestyle to take a break and go for a walk.  Here are a few tips for correct workstation setup to reduce the stress on your body when  avoiding sitting isn't possible.

Chair Setup

                    Lumbar roll

                   Lumbar roll

Make sure your chair is height adjustable so that your knees are below your hips, feet rest flat on the floor and your elbows rest at the height of your desk.   Sit at the very back of your chair and support your lower back with the use of a lumbar roll.

Desk Setup

The mouse and keyboard should be close enough to your body that your elbows are positioned directly under your shoulders.  Use of a document holder can reduce neck strain when spending a lot of time looking at paper documents.  Position irregularly used items at a distance that requires you to get up to reach them. This will encourage variability in your posture throughout the day.

                         Document holder

                        Document holder

If working off a laptop for sustained periods use a docking station to elevate the height of the screen and tilt the keyboard downward to reduce neck strain.  Most importantly get up and move as often as possible. Varying your posture regularly throughout the day will minimise the increase in pressure on your spine. Even a 20 second break from sitting every 45 mins is enough to reduce the strain on your spine.

Reference: http://www.ergonomicsnow.com.au/resources/workspace-set-up


Kelly is a McKenzie Credentialled physiotherapist and Pilates instructor at Lifecare Ashburton Sports Medicine, who specialises in the treatment and prevention of neck and low back pain. To make an appointment or book into one of Kelly's classes please click here