It's a given for many of us that going to work means sitting in front of a computer, or working on a laptop or on a phone for hours at a time. Long hours of improper posture over long periods of time can not only add complications to your work life, but can have adverse health repercussions. If you want to feel more supported and comfortable while sitting for long periods of time, if you want to be kind to your spine and body, check out these tips for how to set yourself up for success working at a desk job.
1. Support your monitor—the top of your screen should be eye level, the monitor itself an arm’s length away. Monitor stands or laptop stands are the best way to do this.
You can make your own stand with a stack of books or an inclined surface—just make sure if you’re supporting your laptop that the bottom of the stand allows your machine’s fans to work.
Laptop users might also consider investing in in a separate keyboard and mouse so that you can have more distance and ease and relax your shoulders down and back.
2. Uncross your legs, and adjust your chair so that your knees are level or higher than your hips—you can also place a raised surface beneath your feet if they don’t reach the ground, or if having them flat on the ground doesn’t feel good.
3. Stack your bones: Make sure your ears are above your shoulders, your shoulders back and down towards your back pockets. Shift your hips underneath your torso, so that you sit on your “sits bones” and your tailbone is drawn down—your back should meet the back of the chair.
4. Support your lumbar with either a lumbar pillow/support, or a rolled-up towel, or shop around for chairs that make you feel supported when you sit with your back on the back of the chair.
5. Move around, change tasks, stand up, do stretches at your desk, get away from your desk and monitor for lunch breaks—make sure your circulation doesn’t stay stagnant.
6. Avoid the temptation to lean towards your monitor. (head hanging forward explanation)
Don’t get stagnant! Pick one or two tips and make a goal to focus on those for the next week. Your neck and spine will thank you.