Working from home has presented a plethora of challenges over the past several months. Neck and back pain are just a couple of those issues that have arisen. Poor posture and a less than ideal workstation set up can be a real pain, literally. Poor posture can lead to neck pain, shoulder pain, back pain or wrist pain leaving you feeling drained, sore and even with a headache by the end (or middle) of your work day. How can we prevent these aches and pains? Here are a few tips to make sure your work from home set up is best serving you!
1. Make sure you have a supportive chair.
- A supportive backrest helps keep you sitting up tall with proper spine alignment.
- Adjustable armrests allow you to maintain relaxed shoulders, elbows at 90 degrees
and minimal bend in wrist while typing.
- Adjustable seat to allow hips and knees to be at 90 degrees and feet supported on
ground (you may need a foot stool to ensure proper support).
2. Make sure your monitor is at the proper height.
- The top of your monitor should be at eye level and can be slightly tilted if needed.
- Make sure you are not sitting too far from your monitor (approx 18-24 inches away).
- If using multiple monitors, adjust monitors to be in front of you and minimize the need
to turn your neck from side to side.
3. Take breaks!
- Having good posture is important, but sustained sitting posture in general is not good
- Every 30 minutes get up and take a standing or walking break.
- If you have options for standing workstations, take advantage throughout your day to
change from sitting to/from standing to switch things up.
- Take time during your breaks to stretch wrists, shoulders, neck and upper back to
keep muscles and joints from stiffening up.
- Hold each stretch 20 to 30 seconds, 4 to 6 times each
Here are some examples of stretches to keep you moving:
Thoracic extension stretch
Pec stretch (in corner)
If you have tried these things and are still feeling pain or discomfort, a physical therapist can help set you up for success!
There are a variety of hands on treatments and exercises that your physical therapist can provide to help reduce your neck, back or extremity pain. Your physical therapist can also give you individualized coaching on how to best set up your work from home station to reduce pain and let you focus on your tasks at hand.
Contact us at Dynamic Physical Therapy & Wellness today for your individualized treatment to help you Perform Better, Live Better, Get Better!