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5 Ergonomic Laptop Tips to Help You Feel Great and Work More Productively from Home

10 June 2024

Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, millions of employees worldwide are now working from home. Whether you have a temporary work-from-home arrangement or you are working from home full-time, it's important to carve out a space that separates your work life from your life at home. It's equally important to make sure that your workstation is fully equipped with the right ergonomic accessories to make the day more comfortable and productive for you.

Read the five ergonomic laptop tips and guidelines to help you feel great and work more productively at home while preventing damage to your spine.

Using Your Laptop Properly at Home is Critical

Most of the employees were sent home with a laptop in hand during the pandemic. This can be dangerous because most people are not aware of how to set up a workstation with their laptop such that it keeps their spine comfortable and prevent injury. As a result, there was a surge in the number of cases related to spinal discomfort during the pandemic, which is why we suggest that you need to learn how to use your laptop properly at home.

Technically laptops were not designed to be used as primary computers all day long. Instead, laptops were primarily designed to offer mobility during meetings and travel. However, since millions of people are now working at home and using laptops, it can significantly increase several health risks associated with prolonged laptop use.

Possible Ergonomic Risks and Helpful Ergonomic Laptop Tips

Let's look at some of the possible ergonomic risks of working on a laptop and helpful ergonomic laptop tips that will help you feel great and work more productively from home.

Constantly Looking at the Monitor Can Strain Neck Muscles

Risk # 1 – Constantly Looking at the Monitor Can Strain Neck Muscles

One of the most significant concerns of working at a laptop is the constant need to look down, which can strain your neck muscles. The problem intensifies as you choose to work with your laptop on your lap, on a sofa, or your bed. And while it is a concern for your neck, it is also not good for your eyes.

Ergonomic Laptop Tip 1

Make sure you place your laptop on a higher surface such that your neck doesn't have to bend down as you choose to work on your laptop. You can place your laptop on your desk. If you feel your desk is low, you can use a laptop riser to ensure that your eyes are looking at the top of the screen. Moreover, also ensure that your screen is no more than an arm's length away.

You can also choose to purchase an external monitor that provides the ability to adjust the screen just the way you want it.

Continuously Typing on the Laptop Can Strain Your Wrists and Hands

Risk # 2 – Continuously Typing on the Laptop Can Strain Your Wrists and Hands

While working on a laptop, another ergonomic concern that can arise that affects your productivity is a strain on your wrists and hands. As you constantly type on a laptop, you need to ensure that you are placing your hands in the correct position, or else it can lead to repetitive strain injuries like carpal tunnel syndrome.

Ergonomic Laptop Tip 2

While using a laptop at home, make sure you invest in a separate keyboard, and a wireless mouse as typing on a laptop continuously can strain your wrists and hands. Moreover, also ensure that you keep your hands straight and in line with your laptop as you type using your laptop. Lastly, always place your laptop or separate keyboard on a straight, firm surface to maximize your comfort and productivity as you type.

Working on Surfaces Other Than a Desk Can Lead to Pain, Discomfort, and A lot More

Risk # 3 – Working on Surfaces Other Than a Desk Can Lead to Pain, Discomfort, and A lot More

When you choose to work on your laptop while lying on the sofa or your bed, it leads to slouching and pushing you into awkward positions that can lead to pain, discomfort, and permanent damage to the structure of the spine, which in turn can lead to backache, neck and shoulder pain.

Ergonomic Laptop Tip 3

Given the obvious concerns associated with working on surfaces other than a desk, it is recommended to have a specific working area for you to work. Make sure your working area is firm and straight. If you do not have a desk and plan to invest in one, you can consider investing in a height-adjustable desk that is programmed to alter between sitting and standing.

One of the best height adjustable desks that you can find on the market for your home workstation is the Willow Solid Wood Standing Desk. The height-adjustable standing desk is made from an environmentally sustainable material and comes from a reliable manufacturer, FlexiSpot, that's just another name for durability and reliability. The strong and stable height adjustable standing desk is sturdy enough to hold the weight of your desktop, your laptop, its accessories, and a lot more. The high-quality, environmentally-friendly height adjustable standing desk will serve you just right for your home office workstation.

For home offices that cannot accommodate a height-adjustable standing desk, you can also consider investing in foldable tables that you can use for placing your laptop while sitting on your couch or bed to minimize the strain on your spine.

Working Without Adequate Back Support Can Be Dangerous

Risk # 4 – Working Without Adequate Back Support Can Be Dangerous

Many people, including both men and women, choose to work on their kitchen countertop, which is often not a wise decision. After all, working on your kitchen counter often means relying on a bar stool for sitting. Prolonged sitting without adequate back support can lead to irreparable damage to the spine. It can also strain the spine and modify the spinal structure and strain the neck, shoulder, and back muscles.

Ergonomic Laptop Tip 4

So if you are someone who is using a bar stool for working on the laptop, know that it is critical to support your back while you work. Instead of working at a bar stool that comes without back support, you preferably invest in an ergonomic office chair that provides adequate support to your back and hips. Moreover, an ergonomic office chair also supports your arms, so your neck and shoulder muscles are relaxed while you work.

If investing in an ergonomic office chair is not an option, make sure you opt for a setting that offers back support. If you choose to work on a bar stool, make sure you choose one with adequate back support. Moreover, also look for extra cushion and support under your feet, so your feet are firmly placed on the ground.

Working in a Space That’s Not Dedicated for Work

Risk # 5 – Working in a Space That's Not Dedicated for Work

Another significant concern while working on your laptop at home is choosing a space that's not dedicated to work. Many people working at home choose to work in their bedrooms on their beds or a couch in front of a television. Working in locations at your home that are not dedicated to work often means that your pets (or your children) may be a constant distraction. And let's be honest. Who can resist the temptation to hug your favorite pup or your crawling child while they are around? While it is a natural response when our favorite loved ones are around, cuddling a baby or playing with your pet while working on your laptop can be detrimental to your posture and spine.

Ergonomic Laptop Tip 5

While working from home, make sure you have a dedicated space to work where you can maintain your posture effectively. Moreover, it is critical to avoid getting into awkward postures when loving your child or pet and try to multitask as you do your work.

Furthermore, you can consider placing your pet or child in a designated area near your workstation where they can still be close to you without affecting your posture while you are working.

Final Words

Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, millions of employees have been working at home. While working at home may seem like a blessing for a few, it can only be considered a true blessing if you set up an ergonomic workstation at home. Or else, constantly working on your laptop can lead to strain and damage to your spine. Try out these five ergonomic laptop tips to create a more ergonomic-friendly workstation at home.