Dr. Pavin Rakhra
At Home Ergonomics
Updated: Mar 30, 2020
First and foremost, we hope everyone is staying safe during these uncharted times. Who could have imagined how drastically and quickly things could change around the entire WORLD in a matter of days and weeks.
The current health climate has caused many changes for people around the world with the most uniform change being to Stay at Home.
With many of us now working from home, it may have increased the amount of aches, pains, and discomfort you may be feeling. One of the primary reasons for this is probably a less than ideal workspace set up.
Below we have listed Do’s and Don’ts when it comes to working from home! The above illustration represents an ideal ergonomic setup and is there for your visual reference, although it might not be 100% possible.
We’ve created a simple list of positive changes you can make at home to reduce your discomfort and/or chances of having a flare up.
1.Use a chair with good back support allowing you to sit upright, if possible adjust your seat height to make sure your feet remain flat on the floor. Arm rests on the chair are also ideal as they help reduce stress on the shoulders and give your elbows a nice place to relax.
2. Aim to place the top of your screen/monitor at eye level or below. Remember to keep your screen as centered as possible. This will create more ease and less stress through your neck while you most likely sit on the computer for hours at time.
3. GET UP! Every 30-45 minutes take a quick break. This can be a great time to get some water or practice a few stretches. Prolonged sitting is directly related to muscles tightness, stiffness, aches, pain, and fatigue. Set a timer on your phone or place a sticky on your monitor as a reminder.
Avoid sitting in bed or on soft couches while doing work on your computer. Although this may be easy and comfortable, your body will not appreciate it down the road or even later that day!
As mentioned previously, do not sit longer for periods of 45 minutes. Do your absolute best to get up and move around.
Here are a list of simple yet effective stretches that you can do at home.
* If either of the following stretches create any sort of pain or discomfort please stop immediately. Make sure to reach out to us if you have any questions or would like to learn more!
The Leg Lift
This is a great stretch to increase blood flow to your lower limbs after sitting for a long time:
1. Sit at the edge of your chair
2. Keep both feet on the floor, with your knees bent at a ninety-degree angle
3. Lift one leg off of the floor as high up as you feel comfortable
4. Feel a stretch along the back of your leg and hold it for 10 seconds, then lower back down
5. Repeat on the other side
Overhead Shoulder Stretch
This is an awesome stretch to release tension from all areas of your upper body, from your neck, shoulders, to upper back, all in one go.
1. Begin with your shoulders relaxed
2. Raise one arm directly overhead and bend it at the elbow
3. Catch the elbow with your opposite hand
4. Pull the upright arm towards the opposite side and hold for 10 seconds
5. Repeat on the other side