Businesses are allowing more and more of their employees to work from home, conveniently suspending the daily commute. While working in your favorite pj’s can be fun, there are some ergonomic challenges to be aware of. Follow these five tips to keep you injury free.
- Although it’s likely the coziest place in your home, especially on a cold, winter day, don’t stay in bed to work. Typing with a laptop positioned on your stomach is not ideal. Instead, sit at a desk or table and make sure your monitor is positioned about an arm’s length away from your chest. Adjust the height of your chair so your feet are flat on the floor and your knees are bent at a right angle.
- Take breaks as often as your work will allow. Remaining in static postures for long durations can increase blood pressure, compress the discs in your spine, and promote tension in muscles that perform everything from walking to typing. To increase mobility, schedule micro-breaks in your calendar or phone and walk to the kitchen every 30 minutes to get a drink of water.
- If background noise helps your productivity level, tune the television or radio to something you’ve never heard. Studies show human performance decreases when a familiar stimulus is introduced.
- To avoid eyestrain and awkward neck postures, ensure your work space has appropriate overhead lighting. Reduce glare on your computer screen from ambient light by positioning your monitor perpendicular to any windows.
- Laptop computers were designed for short-term use. If using full time, be sure to use peripheral devices, including a mouse and headset. Working without them may decrease efficiency and increase discomfort in the upper extremities.