Back Pain in the Office
If you have an office job, you may be at risk for back pain. Poor posture paired with long periods of sitting can take a serious toll on your back and leave you with a great deal of pain and discomfort. The good news is that you can go to work and perform well and protect your back simultaneously. Here are some tips that can help you do so.
Invest in a Standing Desk
Ask your manager or supervisor if you can work on a standing desk rather than a traditional sitting desk. A standing desk is specifically designed to keep your back in optimal shape while you work.
It keeps your computer screen at the same level of your eyes so you don't have to look down and strain your back. Also, a standing desk can give you the chance to place your forearms on the top of your desk and improve your posture.
Pay Attention to Your Posture
Keep in mind that while standing desks can improve back pain, they can't reverse your posture if it's already poor. So it's important to perform certain exercises throughout the day to resolve any posture issues you may have.
You can try strength training, yoga, and sitting on a yoga ball or stability cushion. Just make sure you're aligning your computer monitor properly so that you're not constantly looking down.
Set Up Your Office Chair Correctly
If you're unable to work at a standing desk, there are ways you can set up your office chair so you can maximize back support and maintain a good posture while you're in a sitting position. Sit as close to your desk as you can and make sure your upper arms are parallel to your spine and hands.
Also, choose a desk with an armrest and raise your work surface if you are tall. In addition, get into the habit of pressing your buttocks against your chair's back so that you don't slouch and place unnecessary stress on your lower back.
Get Up and Moving
Sitting at your desk for eight hours a day is not a good idea for your back or health. Make it a priority to get up and move around every hour or so. Visit the restroom, refill your coffee, and speak to a co-worker in person rather than via email. The more you can move throughout the work day, the healthier your back will be.
While it's tough to focus on your back while you're at work, doing so can alleviate or even prevent back pain.