Workplace Fitness: Setting up your workstation

If you’re tired and fatigued after a long day’s work, it could partly be due to improper body posture and workspace ergonomics. In order to be the most productive, both at work and after work (you’ll be less fatigued), consider these tips for setting up your workstation to be as healthy for you as possible.

First check to make sure you’re sitting comfortably and in good alignment. Adjust your chair so your feet are flat on the floor and your knees are level with your hips. Try to avoid sitting with legs crossed or feet underneath you (I do both all the time!). Next take a look at where your computer is sitting, specifically your monitor. Ideally, the monitor should be about 12-30 inches away from your eyes — an arm’s length is about right. The monitor should also be as close to eye level as possible, and preferably at a right angle to any nearby windows to reduce eyestrain from glare. And it may seem like a minor detail, but experimenting with the monitor’s contrast and brightness settings can make a big difference.

Now, while sitting at your desk, look around and make sure all the supplies you use regularly are within easy reach. Things like your phone, stapler, and pen caddie should not cause you to do any undue reaching or stretching, as this can strain arm, shoulder, and back muscles. And to avoid straining your wrists, check to make sure they are comfortable and straight when using the keyboard. You may want to consider a wrist rest for your keyboard and/or mouse pad to help make sure you don’t bend your wrists up, down, or to the side while working. It’s also suggested to avoid using the computer mouse as much as possible by using keyboard shortcuts.

And last but not least, remember to take regular breaks throughout the day — especially if you spend a lot of time at the computer. Rest your eyes by looking away from the monitor for a few minutes, and if you can get up and walk around or do some simple desk exercises to help relax tense muscles.

Author by Rigel Celeste