Maintaining Healthy Posture in the office is Important.
No doubt, you’ve heard plenty about the horrors inflicted on our health by sitting for long periods of time. It increases our risk of developing chronic disease, makes us less productive, prone to brain fog and more. While the reality of being able to get away from your desk for a lunch hour workout or regular ten-minute walks might be less than desirable, there are still plenty of ways to enhance health without leaving your space. May is Posture Month, so take time to evaluate your posture at work since it can have a massive impact on your health.
Poor posture compresses and weakens our core, and that leads to back pain, neck pain, and more.
Poor posture compresses and weakens our core, and that leads to back pain, neck pain, and more. The single best solution to these issues is to simply NOT sit all day. If possible, get a standing desk (or get creative – stack books, magazines, whatever is available to get your screen eye-level while standing). Of course, that’s not always an option. Here are a few things to be aware of when it comes to improving your posture in the office.
4 Simple Ways to Improve Your Posture at Work:
1. Evaluate how you’re sitting.
If you don’t have the option to stand, then find some ways to sit better. Stack your head over your shoulders, and shoulders over your pelvis for a straight spine. Make sure your hips are above the knees. Adjust your chair however you need to make this happen. Additionally, crossing your legs is also terrible for your posture. It causes a lot of stress to the leg muscles and low back. Try to sit with both feet grounded, knees also at 90 degrees.
2. Make sure your computer is at the same level as your eyes.
We touched on this above, but even sitting in your office chair, your screen should be eye level. When you have to look down at your computer, there’s an incredible amount of stress placed on your neck. The average head is about 10 pounds; leaning forward can make it feel like it weighs 27 pounds. Try to keep your monitor perpendicular to your gaze, and for best effects, at least one arm’s length away. Think about this next time you’re on your smartphone, too.
3. Use a headset instead of the handset on your phone.
Spend a lot of time on the phone? Try using a headset for calls. Many people tend to hunch or huddle forward when they’re on the phone, making for a painful, curved spine. Use a headset or be mindful of your body when on the phone. Better yet, stand or walk when taking calls.
4. Position your keyboard and arms of your chair allow your elbows to fold at 90 degrees.
Stretching your arms more than 90 degrees causes your back muscles to lose strength, resulting in pain. Keep your keyboard and mouse close, alleviating wrist pain as well. You may want to consider a wrist rest for your keyboard if you are on the computer for most of the day. This provides support and reduces muscle and tendon fatigue.
Finding ways to integrate less sitting with more standing and walking are the best ways to improve posture. Swapping out your office chair for an exercise ball used to be a popular trend, but turns out it’s just as easy to slouch and have bad posture on those as it is in a chair.
What tips do you have to improve posture around the office? Share with us in the comment box below!