Many office workers sit at a desk day after day for eight or more hours. Sitting for prolonged periods of time can really put a strain on your body. Proper body positioning at your desk, standing up now and then and keeping your body moving throughout the day are vital to reducing muscle strain, circulation problems and loss of strength and flexibility in certain muscles.
Get up and go
Taking a mini break every hour to get out of your chair and move around – even for 30 seconds – really does a body good.
- Getting a cup of coffee? Take the long way to the kitchen to stretch your legs.
- Going to the restroom? Before heading back to your desk, find some stairs and walk up and down for five minutes.
- Lunch time? Don’t stay at your desk. Go for a walk. Find a nearby park or walk around your office building.
Can’t get up from your desk? These simple exercises will keep your muscles moving: rolling your shoulders backwards, turning your head from side to side, or stretching out your forearms and legs.
Look for a new position
Wait! Don’t rush out and look for a new job. We just want you to take a look at your body position at your desk. Proper positioning of your keyboard, computer monitor and chair can help reduce muscle strain and circulation issues.
- Your computer monitor should:
- Be directly in front of you
- Be positioned with the top of the monitor at your eye level
- Be at a distance where you can see it clearly without squinting or leaning forward or backward
- Your keyboard should:
- Be at a height that allows your elbows to bend at slightly more than a 90-degree angle
- Be high enough to allow you to slide your knees under the keyboard tray or desk
- Be close enough to reach without extending your arms or raising your shoulders
- Not be on top of your desk – unless you can raise your seat to reach the keyboard without straining
- Your chair should have:
- Five wheels for better mobility
- The ability to twist freely on its base
- An adjustable height
- Adjustable arm rests that allow you to sit close to your desk
- An adjustable seat that allows you to sit up straight
- Lumbar support
Make a plan
Our physical therapists are experts at modifying work areas to increase efficiency and prevent or relieve pain. Additionally, if you are experiencing pain that isn’t relieved by modifications to your office setting, we can help develop a treatment plan to relieve your pain and improve your mobility.