Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Do You Slump When You Work, or Proper Posture at Your Computer

Do you spend hours every day sitting down at the screen typing away?  Ask yourself these questions to see if you're stressing your body by not doing it properly!

  • Do your ears line up with your shoulders and hips (like they should if you are sitting up straight)?
  • Is the top of your screen at forehead level?  (hard to do if you're on a laptop!)
  • Are your mouse and keyboard directly in front of you at elbow height?  (The answer is 'no' if you're sitting at a desk or table with your laptop.)  (Your elbows should be bent at 90 degrees.) 
  • Is your upper arm hanging straight down?
  • Is your lower back supported by the backrest of your chair? 
  • Feet flat on floor, thighs parallel to floor?
  • Don''t forget to walk around and "circulate" regularly, as well as get regular exercise.

And here's a picture of proper hand posture:


My office has a semi-ergonomic setup, and I'm working on making it better.  I just bought a large monitor that I can connect up to my laptop that is at eye level.  Trouble is, I often get sick of working there and tend to take my laptop to work in a sunny room, especially when the weather is nice.  So I often catch myself slumped over my laptop, squinting at the screen.

Here's to proper posture to increase our endurance while we work!  Now, if someone could only come up with a few more hours in each day...


PT handout:  A Self-Guided Ergonomic Assessment for the Seated Compouter Operator E.K. Benner,, M.A., P.T., O.C.S.



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