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The modern, sedentary lifestyle poses a number of health-related challenges. One big challenge is how to avoid assuming unhealthy positions that may lead to poor posture during long work hours sitting behind the desk and working with computer. Maintaining an optimal posture is important because poor posture is not only causes a number of musculoskeletal pain conditions, but may also result in breathing difficulties, altered hormone levels, and even trigger
Those who belong to professions that require sitting long hours slumped at a desk are at a greater risk of developing a bad posture. However, there are few simple ways that can help workers maintain a good posture at the workplace and safeguard themselves from the various injuries caused by a poor posture. Listed below are the top 3 of items to facilitate maintaining proper desk posture:
1. Give Your Work Space a Makeover for good posture
Proper office ergonomics, such as the right chair height and adequate placement of the screen, mouse and keyboard, is essential in order to avoid assuming a poor posture. Chose a chair that supports your natural spinal curve and adjust its height at such a level that your arms rest on the armrests with your shoulders relaxed. Make sure that the mouse and keyboard are in your easy reach and you do not have to strain your hands or arms to type or to use the mouse. The same applies to telephone and any other equipment that you routinely use at your workplace. The monitor should be placed in such a manner that its top edge is at or slightly below the eye level.
2. Avoid Sitting Still for Long Hours
If your job involves the use of computers, you cannot avoid sitting for long hours. However, there are a few exercises that you can easily perform while sitting at your desk to avoid the detrimental effects of sitting for a long time. Some of these are:
- Place your right arm over your left leg. Look over your left shoulder and twist your body slightly. Use the same technique to twist your body to the opposite side.
- Stretch your neck muscles, make a double chin to stretch the back of neck & look over your shoulders to right and left
- Stretch one leg with your toes pointing forward. Hold the position for 5 seconds. Repeat the same procedure for the other leg.
- While seated, go on your toes and your heels activating your calf muscles. This pushes the blood back to your heart and decreases joint stiffness and edema.
- Lift your arms over your head while keeping your elbows straight. Bend slowly to the left side and then to the right.
3. Learn how to strengthen your postural muscles
While exercises are generally good for your overall physical health, they can also lead to injury to tendons or muscles if not selected according to the physical needs of an individual. Therefore, it is important to visit a physiotherapist who can assess your postural habits, provide you postural education and training, and help you adopt a proper posture and stance. In addition to this, an experienced North York physiotherapist can recommend you corrective exercises and advice regarding workplace ergonomics to improve your posture and prevent injuries.
To learn more about how physiotherapy can help you improve your posture or to book an appointment with our North York physiotherapist, please call at 416 444 4800.