An Ergonomic Guide for Sitting While Working from Home

May 12, 2021

Ergonomic Chairs

Working to provide for ourselves and our family is in itself already a challenge. Try adding uncomfortable working conditions to the mix and surely you are in for a treat. 

Gone are the days where you go to and from your office. Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the whole world reacted in lieu to minimize the spread of the virus. Companies and the corporate world have shifted to the working from home setup. We cannot deny that many of us are working under less-than-ideal workstations. With all that we are thinking and worrying about, we have no time to think about the ergonomic conditions that we should even be considering. 

As long as it is in a place where there is proper light and ventilation, we are good to go. Whether in the dining room, living room floor, or even in the bathroom, we are up for the challenge. We just have to finish our job responsibilities for the day and that is it. 

However, if we keep up with this kind of setup, we are potentially harming our bodies. The more it is that we cause health conditions that may affect our productivity and work performance. 

To bring a solution to the problem, this article focuses on the right ergonomic positioning that you should be applying in your daily work. Not only does this help you be aware of your body and the right treatment that you can do, but this also aims to help you build a new habit that can do wonders for your overall health and well-being. Stay tuned and keep reading to find out the necessary information to guide you in your everyday work setup.

Importance of Ergonomics

Ergonomics is concerned with ensuring a good match between people and the objects with which they associate. This may include the items they use or the surroundings in which they live. Every product, system, or environment should be designed with ergonomics in mind.

Early in the design phase, ergonomics should be a priority. Ignoring ergonomics can result in designs that are destined to fail commercially, as they have in the past. This does not bring comfort to the user but causes more problems than solutions.

The key components of the concept are efficiency and security. Consider this scenario: you're sitting at your desk, typing away, and your neck or back begins to hurt. You suddenly don't care as much about finishing the job as you do about getting rid of the pain.

Working “efficiently and safely” is easier with an ergonomically optimized workspace. You'll be able to concentrate more on your job if you protect your body from injury (or chronic pain), which will make you a more effective and productive worker.

Having an Ergonomic Home Office

It will take some effort on your part to set up an ergonomically correct workspace at home. You probably have access to or may order, a variety of things at work to assist you in achieving the most ergonomic setup.

That might not be the case if you're working from home during the pandemic. You can't just go out and buy what you need at the office supplies shop. Even if you would, you do not want to spend the money or risk your health.

The ergonomic design of a workspace can be used in an office setting or anywhere else you find yourself operating. The way you set up your workspace and work has a huge effect on how much you use uncomfortable postures and how likely you are to get hurt.

Ergonomic Sitting Tips to Apply in Your Current Workstation

To make the most out of your working environment, you have to keep note of the necessary ergonomic applications to your workstation so that you can take care of your health and body even if you are exerting a lot of effort in your everyday work.

Focus on the Right Sitting Position

When it comes to sitting, there is no one-size-fits-all solution. By changing the angles of their hips, knees, ankles, and elbows, any worker can sit comfortably. The following are some general suggestions. Changes outside of defined ranges are permissible and, in some cases, helpful.

● Keep your hips, knees, and ankles slightly open (more than 90 degrees).

● Knee joints should be at or below hip joints.

● Keep your ankles in front of your knees.

● Maintain a three-finger distance between the back of the knee joint and the chair's front edge.

● Maintain a flat foot on the floor or a footrest.

You can also explore the wide variety of options for an ergonomic office chair on FlexiSpot's website.

Steps for an Optimal Sitting Position 

1. Make sure to adjust your chair or seat height so that your thighs are approximately parallel to the floor with the feet resting flat on the floor or a footrest. 

2. You should be able to adjust the seat so that your lower and mid-back range is properly supported. In addition, try to adjust the seatback height, angle, and tilt tension accordingly and sit back in the chair.

3. You must ensure that positioning of your hands and wrist are necessary to reach the keyboard. It should be at the elbow height for a sitting or standing workstation.

4. Make sure that your wrists are straight and that your hands are in line with your forearms. Do some necessary adjustments like the height and position of the keyboard tray to keep wrists flat.

5. Maintain proper posture by ensuring that your forearms are approximately parallel to the floor. What you can do is adjust the keyboard and mouse tray or desk height accordingly.

6. To reduce shoulder pains and any awkward positionings, you should be able to keep your elbows close to the sides. Adjust armrests so that the weight of your forearms rests on the arms rests. Also, as much as possible avoid hunching the shoulders forward.

7. Avoid having neck strains by reducing the awkward postures of your neck. Ensure that the placing of your monitor is at eye level. Your monitor should be placed at about 20-40 inches (about an arm’s length) away from the eyes. The monitor distance should be about 20 inches when using a small screen or a laptop screen and further away as the screen size gets larger. 

Conclusion

Working from home indeed poses some challenges that you need to get used to so that there would be no problems to be encountered. Hopefully, this article gives you a brief understanding of the importance of making sure that you are in an ergonomic position while working. This can help avoid any potential health issues that can threaten your overall work performance.

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