Remote Work: Your Guide to Home Office Ergonomics

Respondents using a laptop were statistically more likely to make a poor selection in seating such as a dining chair, a couch, or a bed, if they used a worksurface at all, as opposed to a traditional desk. Laptop use was strongly correlated with non-traditional workstations such as a bed or couch which did not provide adequate lumbar support or proper elevation of the monitor. Seating positions that did not provide good back support showed a higher likelihood of discomfort in the eyes, neck, and head; upper back and shoulders, lower back; hips and upper legs; and knees and lower legs.

How can we prevent ergonomic hazards at home?

  1. Set up desk space to support neutral posture.
  2. Ergonomic recommendations for laptops.
  3. Avoid neck strain when using your phone.
  4. Take breaks often to move and stretch.
  5. Check your home office environment for hazards.

Safety professionals can also provide a standard list of equipment that is approved by an ergonomics specialist; employers can also provide a stipend for employees to purchase the right equipment. With a laptop, work from home ergonomics it’s tempting to work on the couch or even in bed. That may be comfy for now, but it could cause real problems down the line. Even if you’re at a table or a desk, there’s a chance the ergonomics aren’t right.

Ways Tech Is Stepping up to Keep Employees Safe On-Site

So before you make any changes, consider how you spend the bulk of your work time. Are you a graphic designer who relies heavily on a mouse or stylus?

  • Having an adjustable chair will help you get your elbows to match the height of the table.
  • The living room sofa is a great place to kick back and relax at the end of a long day.
  • Many individuals dream of going back to the office… And it is not surprising.

To ensure you’ve got the right keyboard height, place the keyboard on your work surface then try to type a few lines. As you type, your wrists should remain straight, and your upper arms should stay close to your body, without you forcing it. Working at kitchen tables or other hard surfaces can strain your wrists and elbows.

– Mouse Placement

If you don’t have that option, then switching between a chair and standing position throughout the day can really help. Look around the house for something to use as a standing desk such as a freestanding bookshelf.

working from home ergonomics

Finally, dining room chair was significantly related to middle back discomfort where more time in the chair increased pain, likely due to the lack of back support. In all, many of the poor ergonomic conditions were related to increased discomfort. Chambers also recommends that people add movement to their home workday by alternating between sitting and standing throughout the day.

– Get the Right Height

Properly sitting means that your feet should be supported by the floor, or at a footrest if the desk height can’t be adjusted. Your legs should be at a 90-degree angle so you can relieve the pressure out of your back, also having excellent lumbar support that is adjustable to keep your back straight.

Lighting should be bright enough to illuminate your workspace, but not so bright that it makes your computer screen hard to read. Position your computer to avoid screen glare caused by lights and windows. Work-related musculoskeletal disorders are among the most frequently reported causes of lost or restricted work time. To help you – and your employees – work safely and efficiently from home, here’s our list of some common ergonomic mistakes and how to correct them. Eliminate sources of glare on the screen to avoid eye strain and fatigue.

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  • This could be caused from employees lacking satisfactory physical boundaries at their residence.
  • As important, your keyboard and mouse should be placed so that when you work your arms hang loosely from the shoulder and bend 90 degrees at the elbow.
  • Even if you’re at a table or a desk, there’s a chance the ergonomics aren’t right.
  • With this shift, a vicious cycle occurs where poor spinal health impacts our physical health and increases our stress level.

Use props (box, books, paper etc.) to raise laptop if you can’t adjust your monitor screen or laptop screen to the proper height. Laptop users tend to position their screen to low which leads to an awkward neck position. Some of the more common complaints are neck and shoulder pain, elbow issues, painful wrists or tingling in the hands, lower back pain, and eye strain. More individuals are being diagnosed with carpal tunnel and other issues of the elbows and shoulder. Working from the kitchen counter, the couch, or the bedroom isn’t a conducive work setup for employees. If their desk is too low or high for them, it may lead to neck and shoulder pain. Having an unsupportive seat may result in muscle problems in the lower back, hips, or knees.

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You may also want to cover sharp corners on filing cabinets and furniture. Using Internet Explorer may prevent you from accessing, and some site features may not function as expected. Send us an email, or visit this form to provide more detailed information, so we can better serve you. Learn how to treat lower back spasms and how to prevent the pain in this article.

working from home ergonomics