Ergonomics in the workplace II

Hopefully you’ve already made your posture adjustments and worked your little breaks into your daily work routine. Today I will go into depth regarding your workstation setup.

Desk and chair placement

Keep in mind that your posture should still be correct with both standing and sitting at your desk.

Your desk should always be placed in such a way that your elbows can rest comfortably at 90°. With a standing desk it is easy, if your elbows are bent too much you need to lower your desk, if your elbows are almost straight you need to lift the desk with blocks or bricks until the desired height has been reached.

It becomes tricky with sitting as it can be incorrect desk height, chair height or posture but if you remember the correct posture, the rest will fall into place:

  • Elbows bent at 90 ͦ – This can be adjusted with either the chair or the desk height or sitting on a firm pillow to lift yourself up.
  • Hips bent between 60 ͦ and 90  ͦ and feet always supported – use either a supporting block under your feet or adjust the chair height.

Placement of objects

In the past I have had many people tell me they experience pain that is dominant to either the left or right side. After we contemplated all possibilities the solution was right in front of our eyes – or in their case a little to the left or right. It turns out their computer was placed off center to the left, causing spasms on the left, or placed to the right, causing spasms on the right. Thus, placement of the objects is important.

Place your computer in the center of your body placement and at eye level. Lower placing can cause neck and shoulder pain and higher placing can cause headaches. If you use papers or a tablet on the side, place it as close as possible to the center, avoiding to bend in awkward positions to a side.

Now it is time to adjust your workplace, find a work-rest balance and keep a healthy and happy posture!

Chantel Burger – physiotherapist


Allison Blair

All stories by: Allison Blair