Ergonomics & Safety When Working Remotely Environmental Health and Safety Leave a comment

In an effort to stem the number of coronavirus infections, millions of Americans are now working from home, transforming kitchen tables and bedrooms into temporary home offices. Many are working under less-than-ideal ergonomic conditions—a kitchen chair that’s too low, a table that’s too high. You can design your work environment exactly how you want it when you work from home. This includes things like setting up a standing desk, investing in a comfortable office chair, or decorating your space to reflect your style.

With a sit-stand desk, you can shift between sitting and standing with ease. At your workplace, you might have ergonomic office supplies to make your working experience more efficient. Part of maintaining good posture is making sure you stretch and move around to give your body time to adjust. Make sure that when you’re done with the workday, you’re able to put your equipment away.

Seated Prayer Position

However, while there are many benefits to working from home, there are also some safety hazards that come along with it. This is why creating a working-from-home safety checklist is important. Investing in the right equipment is equally as important as keeping your posture in check when it comes to achieving an ergonomically optimal workspace.

Your knees should be spaced slightly from the back of your seat, and the hips should be adequately cushioned for comfort. With that being said, many of us just threw together a workstation during our quarantine days. However, since work from home seems to be here to stay for many of us, it might be time to start thinking about investing in a workstation that prioritizes remote work ergonomics. If you can swing it, a standing desk makes it easier to stay productive while breaking up long periods of sitting, but you can also work from your phone or tablet.

Lumbar Support

That gives you the time to master Feng Shui basics that optimize the energy flows in your room. After a week or so of practice, sitting this way will become effortless. Without even thinking about it, you will naturally position yourself to sit with a clean, healthy posture while you work.

work from home ergonomics checklist

This can be a huge advantage for working parents or people with other responsibilities outside of work. While working, ensure you are not straining your neck or shoulders by bending the neck down or craning it up too much; desk alignment is an important factor here. It’s good to take at least one long break after working for extended periods—and you probably already do so with lunch! Use this time to improve your health by going for a walk, stretching, or rehydrating either before or after eating. Your employer should have a policy for ergonomic equipment and a process to report injuries. OSHA can inspect home-based worksites for hazards after you file a complaint.

Your Home Office Ergonomics Checklist

Therefore, if you work with the laptop on a kitchen table, the screen will be too low. Minimal social contact, round-the-clock distractions, and poorly designed workspaces can negatively impact your work performance and job satisfaction. Your keyboard should be placed at a distance where you can comfortably reach it with your elbows at your side. For keyboards with number pads, make sure you’re centering it based on the letters rather than the whole keyboard.

  • Ergonomics can reduce the risk of strains and sprains and other related musculoskeletal injuries (MSIs).
  • When you look at the screen, the top third of the screen should be at eye level.
  • You won’t have to look sideways constantly, and you can place the monitor at a level that’s comfortable for you.
  • Research shows that a reclined, ergonomic desk chair reduces pressure on your back and helps with back pain.
  • If you are the only person using the space, customizing will reduce the time and discomfort of sitting at a station that does not fit you.
  • Purchase an add-on, back-tilt keyboard tray that sits below your worksurface.

When you practice any skill, your brain begins to coordinate muscle movements. Repetition etches neural pathways deeper into memory to perform tasks more efficiently. For a few decades, ergonomists have been touting dynamic neutral sitting postures as the healthy solution to this physiological problem. Taking frequent pauses to think, rest, or walk around might make you look lazy. As a result, you spend your shifts firing off mouse clicks to look busy. If you don’t have an office chair that supports your lower back, try putting a cushion or towel between your lower back and the backrest.

Stretch 3: Neck Stretch

One feature that is commonly overlooked when it comes to finding an ergonomic desk chair is adjustable back rests. Yes, adjustable chair height is very important, but ensuring that your chair can recline and tilt at an angle also needs to be on your office ergonomics checklist. Look for chairs that can recline at least 135 degrees back with synchronous tilt. Research shows that a reclined, ergonomic desk chair reduces pressure on your back and helps with back pain.

For example, when I bought my first gaming chair back in 2017, I started with very bad posture. The rise of telecommuting makes home office ergonomics a priority for businesses and employees. So our offers you tips to undertake simple changes and adjustments in the space of your home that you dedicate to professional and work needs. A remote ergonomic assessment of your home office setup can improve your comfort, safety, and productivity. Deciding which height to set your keyboard at depends entirely on your desk height and posture.

Beyond cleaning up my diet, I’ve replaced my 5-year gym routine with a work-from-home setup. Lately, I’ve been playing around with Chris Heria dumbbell routines as work breaks. However, a big part of the team’s success is their time spent away from the computer. The team uses the Astralis Performance Model to emphasize proper nutrition, fitness, and rest.

work from home ergonomics checklist

Follow the Sit-Stand Switch™ and be sure to move every 30 minutes. Your keyboard height should be roughly the same height at your elbows. That means most worksurfaces are too high to be considered ergonomic (especially laptops). Purchase an add-on, back-tilt keyboard tray that sits below your worksurface.

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