Your computer is essential in the workplace and at home. Yet, lack of proper ergonomics at your workstation may impact your health long after your projects are completed.
This “10 tips checklist” will help you determine what you may need to change for a more ergonomic and healthy workspace at home or at the office. Remember, in most cases, small adjustments and simple ‘tools’ can make a huge difference!
1. Your back:
1. Provide adequate lumbar support to reduce stress to your lower back. Sit all the way back in your chair or select a back cushion that provides the right support like the IMAK back cushion.
2. Your feet:
1. Make sure your feet rest firmly on the floor or use a footrest.
3. Your arms and elbows:
1. Adjust the height of your chair so your upper arms are relaxed at your sides and your elbows are at even height with your keyboard/mouse. (If your chair has armrests, use them to support your elbows and lower arms).
2. Arrange your keyboard and mouse within reach of your seated position. Center keyboard in front of you and place other accessories within arm’s reach.
4. Your neck and shoulders:
1. Place the monitor directly in front of you about 2-3ft from your head.
2. Prevent neck pain by adjusting the height of the screen so the top of the screen is a few inches above your eye level when seated. The monitor should be facing your head so you do not have to twist your neck up or down.
3. Place reference documents used for typing near the monitor to limit repetitive neck movements.
5. Your wrists:
1. Your wrists should be straight and ‘float’ above the keyboard. Relax your hand when placed on your mouse to prevent cramping.
2. For wrist pain relief, use the IMAK SmartGlove® to keep your wrist in a safe ergonomic position.
3. If you have nighttime pain or tingling and numbness, (Be sure to check with your health care provider if you are experiencing these symptoms as you may have be developing carpal tunnel syndrome.)
4. For wrist support and comfort, use IMAK Wrist Cushions for Keyboard and Wrist Cushions for Mouse. They not only support and cushion your wrists, but the ergoBeads filling is so comforting to ‘knead’ that you end up exercising and massaging your hands throughout the day. This helps ensure good blood circulation and healthy and strong hands. This even helps relieve your stress!
6. Your hands and fingers:
1. Touch the keyboard keys lightly when typing to reduce the impact on your fingers. The average computer user hits keys many times harder than necessary.
2. Keep your hands and fingers relaxed when typing.
3. You should rest your wrists only when you are not typing, i.e. thinking, downloading, etc
7. Your eyes:
1. Reduce glare by placing the monitor away from overhead lights or near a bright window.
2. Adjust the brightness and contrast settings of the screen or use an anti-glare screen in front of your monitor.
3. Adjust your onscreen document’s font size to make viewing easier.
4. After a day of staring at the computer screen, rest your eyes and relax
8. Limit repetitive motions:
1. Create shortcuts to handle repetitive tasks in your documents to reduce your keystrokes.
2. Use the scroll lock feature on your mouse or keyboard shortcuts to reduce mouse use.
3. Squeeze an IMAK Stressball throughout the day to relief your stress and develop strong and healthy hands.
9. Take breaks!
1. Take frequent mini breaks — “eye” breaks by focusing on objects far away, and mind and body breaks by taking a few deep breaths and briefly relaxing your whole body.
2. Take stretch breaks every 20-30 minutes.
10. Laptop Users:
1. Keep your hands and wrists healthy by using the IMAK Computer Glove. It protects your wrist from the hard surface and sharp edges of your laptop.
2. Prevent your shoulder strap from digging into your shoulders causing you pain.