Computer Ergonomics

By following some simple steps you can maximise work efficiency and decrease aches, pains and strains associated with working at a computer.

Environment:

  • Ensure good air circulation where your desk is set up.
  • Screen needs to be clear without any glare to avoid squinting and eye fatigue.

Chair:

  • Chair should feel comfortable to sit in and familiarise yourself with all the mechanical adjustments.
  • Hips just above knees around 100 – 110 degrees and knees at 90 degrees with the soles of feet on the floor, a stool may be required if legs do not reach.
  • Ensure your back is in contact with the chair that provides a gentle curve to maintain your spine in a neutral position.
  • Arms should be close to your sides with shoulders relaxed.

Desk and computer:

  • Keyboard should be close and elbows bent with the most used area of the keyboard in front of you – do not have any documents between you and the keyboard. If you need to refer to a document have it on a stand next to the computer or attached to the screen.
  • Mouse as clase to the keyboard as possible.
  • Your computer screen should be around an arm’s length away with screen at eye level.
  • If you use two screens make sure you swivel your chair to look at the other screen instead of twisting your neck.
  • Wrists should be straight and relaxed with no pressure on your wrists.

Office Equipment:

  • Continually turning or reaching to one side or too far in front of you can cause repetitive strains.
  • Ensure that any equipment that you use often i.e phone, printer, stationary is in easy reaching distance.
  • It’s a good idea to have equipment on both sides of your workspace so you are equally turning to both sides of your body.

Hint and tips:

  • Regular breaks are essential; you need regular movement to encourage blood and lymphatic flow. Aim to get up/move/ stretch briefly every 20-30 minutes. Sitting has been hailed as the new smoking so try to utilise your beaks to move and get some exercises.
  • Give your eyes a regular break from the screen by focusing on other objects briefly.
  • Have someone assess you in your computer setup, things may feel fine if you have got yourself into bad habits, correct posture may require some perseverance until your body adjusts.
  • There are many aids and gadgets out there to assist with ergonomics, if you’re having any problems, chances are there is something that can help you out.
  • If any questions or queries then your osteopath will be able to help you out.