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Sitting properly at work

If your office workplace isn’t designed ergonomically, you can really feel it in your back. It only takes a few adjustments to make things more comfortable at your desk.


Four out of five adults have had back pain at some point in their life or suffer from occasional twinges, particularly in the lower back. Back pain is unpleasant, and Rheumaliga claims that doctors can’t find a clear cause in 85% of cases. Recently, fascia (connective tissue) have been identified as a possible trigger for back pain.

One thing is clear: if your workplace isn’t ergonomic, your back will suffer, because full-time office workers spend 80% of their day sitting. It’s therefore important to change position regularly and stretch from time to time.

How to make your workplace ergonomic:

Chair

  • Your thighs should rest on the seat.
  • Your feet should be flat on the floor.
  • There should be an angle of at least 90 degrees between your thighs/calves and thighs/torso.
  • Ideally you should be able to place two finger widths between the back of your knees and the edge of your chair.
  • You should be able to adjust the height and back rest of your chair an ideally it should have a tilt function.
  • An air-filled cushion or gymnastic ball provide variety.

 



Desk

  • Daylight should come from the side and your screen should be positioned at a 90-degree angle to the window.
  • Your desk should be at elbow height.
  • If you can’t change the height of your desk, adjust the position of your chair. Footrests can help shorter people, while taller people should raise their desks.

 



Screen, keyboard, paper

  • Parallel to the edge of the desk.
  • Place documents between the keyboard and screen (document rest).
  • If you have two screens, the main screen should be central, while the other should be placed to the side the same distance away.
  • The maximum distance between your eyes and the screen should be between 60 to 80 cm, further away for big screens.
  • The top edge of the screen should be at least 10 cm below eye level.
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