Monday, April 4, 2011

Preventing Your Computer Chair From Being A Pain In The Back

Most people believe that sitting is relaxing. Sitting, contrary to popular belief, is hard on the back. Sitting for long periods of time can cause increased pressure on the discs of the spine. Sitting is also hard on the feet and legs. Gravity tends to pool blood in the legs and feet and create a sluggish return to the heart.
The following recommendations can help increase comfort and decrease pain for computer users:
  • Don’t stay in one static position for extended periods of time.
  • When performing daily tasks, alternate between sitting and standing or take small walking breaks throughout the day.
  • Adjust the height of backrest to support the natural inward curve of the lower back.
  • The chair back should have a lumbar support.
  • You can use a rolled towel, lumbar roll or cushion to support the low back.
  • The angle of the back rest is subjective but the trunk and upper legs should form an angle between 90 to 115 degrees.
  • Adjust the height of your chair so your feet rest flat on floor.
    • Sit upright in the chair with your low back against the backrest and your shoulder blades touching the backrest.
    • Your thighs should be parallel to the floor and your knees at about the same level as your hips.
    • The back of your knees should not come in direct contact with the edge of the seat and there should be 2-4 inches between the edge of the seat and the back of the knee
  • Ensure that you have 2-3 inches of space between the top of your thighs and the underside of your desk.
  • Have enough space under your work surface so that you can pull yourself all the way up to the edge of the desk with room for your legs and knees to fit comfortably.
Sounds like a lot to think about, but if you concentrate on only one thing and add only one thing a time, you will sit better with less stress.