Work-related back pain is one of the major reasons of missed work. Slouching over a computer for 8h and then going home where you do the same thing can cause serious health consequences. Not only does continual back pain distract you from your work activities, but it can also affect your personal life at home.
The ergonomic office workstation and regular exercises are the most important techniques for preventing back pain.
Bad posture at desk can worsen any back condition. Correct posture can significantly alleviate back pain. Position the chair so that it is close as possible to the desk. When you sit, your back should be straight against the back of the chair. The chair should have low-back support in order for you to have good posture. We will talk about chairs later. The feet should rest flat on the floor with your knees bended at 90 degrees angle. The same applies to your arms. Make sure your elbows are close to the body and that your forearms rest on the desk bended at 90 degree angle. The front of the seat should not press the back of knees. The distance between thighs and the chair should be one finger width.
Desk Objects Position
Office ergonomics does not include posture only. Everything on and under the desk can cause back strain. A telephone, printer, scanner, papers, everything you have on your desk should be placed in the way they can be comfortably reached while sitting. If you need to reach something, but you cannot do it sitting on the chair, always stand up. Place the mouse close to you and at the height which requires minimal bend wrist. The wrist rest can help you during brakes while typing. Put heels and palms of your hands on wrist rest during a break. Make sure your wrists are straight while typing. Use a headset if the job requires you to talk on the phone and type at the same time. The top of the screen should be a little bit below eye level.
Exploit advantages of technology as much as you can. Did you know that there are ergonomic keyboards, ergonomic LCD mounts, ergonomic CPU holders and mouse pads?
Choosing the Right Office Chair
Ergonomic office chairs are one of the best chairs you can opt for. Ergonomic chairs have adjustable height and armrests, low-back support and 12 to 19 inches wide backrest. These chairs are made in order to minimize back strain as much as possible.
On the other hand, good reception chairs are not to be underestimated. As much as you care about yourself and employees, you care about your customers. There are comfortable high-quality reception chairs on the market you can choose from.
Taking regular breaks every hour and so is another way to stop back pain during work. Whenever you can, stand up and stretch. You can also do stretching exercises. Office stretches include shoulder stretch, upper arm stretch, chest stretch, chin tuck, head turn, side neck stretch, lower back stretch and standing thigh stretch. It is a full body workout except it is much easier.
Hit the Gym
In order to minimize stress on your back, you should strengthen both your muscles and your bones. Even though office stretches are highly beneficial for your health, regular exercises are important, as well.
Apart from regular exercises, active back exercises can help you, too. We have mentioned various methods of prevention, but you should know some basic exercises which can help you when pain becomes unbearable. They are done if you need to alleviate back pain. The exercises include stretching for back pain relief, specific hamstring stretches for back pain relief, back strengthening exercises and low-impact aerobic exercise.
Keep Stress at Bay
Stress is another cause of back pain, believe it or not. Stress creates muscle tension which can worsen a back pain problem and which can make you more vulnerable to injuries. In this case, a regular workout can relieve you from any negative emotions.
According to orthopedic surgeons, abovementioned daily habits cannot guarantee you that you will never have back problems, but they can decrease the frequency of pain episodes to the minimum. You know the saying, prevention is better than cure. Do whatever you can to prevent back pain to lead a happy and stress-free life.