One of the drawbacks of living in a modern digital era is that many of today’s jobs call for employees to be in a sitting position throughout the day, which can do more harm than good to the human body. Sitting for up to 8 hours in an average workday can lead to myriad back issues, in addition to other physical ailments and conditions.
However, with some relatively simple adjustments to improve your posture and sitting position, you can decrease some of the pressure on your back and help alleviate common pain symptoms.
To minimize back pain during office hours, try to remain mindful of the following:
To put the least pressure on your arms and shoulders, you must keep your elbows at an approximate 90-degree angle. Elbows should be positioned on chair rests in a way that doesn’t push your arms up into your shoulders.
An arm rest should be at a height where it lifts your shoulders, elbows, and arms just slightly. This will provide the optimal amount of support and relief from pressure. It also serves to prevent your body from slouching forward.
Furthermore, make sure that your keyboard or desk are positioned to enable a comfortable reach to them. Bear in mind that there are poorly designed desks and chairs that won’t allow you to get into a correct position even if you try, so starting off with the right office furnishings is an important factor in achieving proper elbow positioning going forward.
When in a seated position, thighs should be parallel with the floor. This will ensure that your lower back is in the correct position. If needed, adjust the height of your chair so that your feet touch the ground, and make sure that your hips are at a 90-degree angle.
If your chair is too low and cannot be adjusted, using seat pillows will help you attain the correct sitting position.
To check that your calves will have sufficient room for movement, sit all the way back in your chair with your back pressed against the back rest. While in this position, try and put your hands underneath your legs. There should be enough room between your calves and the chair for your fist. If there’s no room, then your chair is too large. If the chair can’t be adjusted, add some lumbar support for your back.
Establish low back support
A proper sitting position means having your back fit snugly against the chair back rest. Your lower back needs enough support so that you don’t need to bend forward as you go about your daily work duties.
Sit in front of your desk as normal and close your eyes, then open them and see where your gaze rests when looking straight ahead. If you are looking directly at your computer screen, your sitting position is ideal. If the screen is too low or high for your gaze, adjust your sitting position or computer screen until your vision lines up with what you’re viewing throughout the day.
Get Up and Move
Lastly, your body needs good blood circulation for best performance, so make sure to get up at least once every hour or so to walk or stretch your legs.