Health blog

How to Adjust your Workspace

How to adjust your workspace

By Association des chiropraticiens du Québec 

Many people are now working at home because of the COVID-19 crisis. Here are some simple tips to help you adjust your temporary workstation at home with what you have around.

Chair

Adjusting the chair must absolutely be the first step. An office chair would be ideal. A couch is not recommended…

Key position: Elbows are bent at 90 degrees and they are close to the body. Shoulders stay relaxed. Elbows should be at the height of the table in this position.

If you don’t have an office chair at home: choose a comfortable chair with a lumbar support if available. A cushion or a pillow can be placed in the lower back to serve as a lumbar support.

If you are short: it is possible that working at the kitchen table causes muscle spasms in your trapezoids. If so, you can put a cushion under your buttocks to raise yourself up. You can also use a box or a dictionary as a footrest if your feet are not lying flat on the floor. The goal is to keep your knees and thighs in a 90 degrees angle and parallel to the floor.

Screen

Key position: The screen should be located in front of the user and at an arm’s length away. The top of the screen should be at eye level. If the screen is too low: just raise it with a stack of paper or books. In short: use what you have around!

Be aware: Wearers of progressive lenses must adjust the height of their screen according to their type of lens. The key position is to keep the cervical spine in a neutral position that is neither in flexion nor in extension.

Laptop

The laptop’s design, with attached screen and keyboard, limits the number of adjustments that can be made. In order to make this option a little more ergonomic, the best would be to equip yourself with an external mouse and keyboard.

Always remember :

  • Keep your elbows as close to your body as possible when handling the mouse;
  • Avoid crossing your legs;
  • Use the hands-free function of your phone as much as possible;
  • Take frequent breaks and take the opportunity to do some stretching exercises.

Our tips in video !

References

Ici.Radio-Canada.ca – Télétravail et COVID-19 : gare aux troubles musculo-squelettiques

Isarta.com – Ergonomie : Quelles postures adopter en télétravail?