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Work from Home Ergonomics

Where are you working nowadays? If you said “the dining room table” or “the couch”, you’re not alone and this blog post is for you.

Ergonomics is about optimizing human performance, not just “sitting up straight”. Let’s face it: we could all use a little more ergonomics in our lives. It’s important to ensure good ergonomics to prevent injuries and promote wellness.

Here are some tips that can help improve your ergonomic setup without a lot of fancy (and expensive) equipment:

  • Choose your work area. Working from the couch may seem great until you start experiencing back issues from straining to look at your laptop down on your lap. It’s better to choose a work surface you can fit comfortably under and which is the right height for you.
  • Support your body. Don’t sit on the edge of your chair – allow the back of your chair to support your back. This will help prevent fatigue and relieve muscle tension. Your forearms should be parallel to the floor – you may need to raise your chair or put some pillows on your seat to position yourself correctly. If you can’t rest your feet flat on the floor, place books, a box, or pillows under them.
  • Keep it close. Keep everything you need for work close at hand to avoid reaching. Use an external keyboard and mouse when working on a laptop and pull these close to your body.
  • Adjust your monitor. Keep your monitor centered and at the right height. A good rule of thumb is to start with the top of the monitor level with your eyes, and then make small adjustments until you’re comfortable.
  • Take frequent breaks. Taking breaks throughout the day will improve your productivity and allow you to move around and adjust your posture.
  • Avoid work creep. It’s easier to work longer hours than intended while working from home. Keep your work confined to normal work hours to ensure you have an adequate break and can return refreshed the next day.
  • Get enough sleep. Most adults need 7-8 hours of sleep per night. Limit use of electronics before bed to prevent delays in your body’s release of melatonin.

Safety Partners will be holding a live webinar entitled “The Ergonomics of Working from Home” on July 29th with more tips and tricks to support your health and wellness. We’d love to see you there! #SaferTogether

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