Tips for Successfully Working from Home When You’re in the Office Ergonomic Furniture Industry
It’s a dream for many people to be able to work from home, but it doesn’t always work out. Some people who try to work from home end up being unproductive, stressed and overwhelmed.
In light of this, BU Today consulted Kelly Pesanelli (CGS'94, Sargent'96,'98), a licensed physical therapist and lecturer in health sciences at the Sargent College of Health & Rehabilitation Sciences, and Carolyn Herkenham, a senior specialist and industrial hygienist at Boston University Environmental Health & Safety, for advice on how to set up an ergonomic workstation at home.
Here are some tips to help you stay productive and successful.
DON'T slouch in front of your computer
Are you really the most productive when using a laptop on your lap? It’s easy to fall into that habit when writing emails, creating spreadsheets, browsing the web, and doing other office-related tasks. But hunching over your laptop or tablet isn’t the most ideal position to be in for your body or mind.
The postures we assume while working with laptops may not be ideal but they aren’t particularly harmful. However, standing at a desk is actually better for your posture than sitting—even if you’re using a laptop. It gives you more freedom of movement, which can help reduce pain and muscle fatigue. It can also make you more alert and focused.
In addition to improved posture, standing desks can help contribute to a healthier weight and prevent fatigue. They also allow you to move around more while working, which can help you maintain the correct posture while performing other tasks throughout your day.
Work at a height that is comfortable for you
Place your table or desk at a height that allows your elbows to align naturally with the surface they are working on. Impingement or pain associated with carpal tunnel syndrome will not occur as a result of this.
If Possible, Use an Office Chair
Office chairs are indispensable in an office environment. And they are used frequently by the employees. On the one hand, this is a relatively high frequency of use. The other is that the comfort of sitting has a direct impact on the health of the spine and body, many problems can be caused by the improper use of the office chair.
Don't Abandon Your Present Chair
There are some common items you may use around the house to help you adjust if you don't have access to an office chair. Your hips will be raised and your spine's curve will be increased by placing a hard cushion or tightly folded towel under your buttocks, making sitting more comfortable.
DON'T let your feet dangle
Put a few books or boxes under your desk to support your feet so that your thighs are almost parallel to the floor and your hips are just a little higher than your knees. This will make your lower back feel less stressed.
DON'T use your couch as a place to work
Even though it's tempting, the couch is not the best place to work on your computer all day. Even though it might feel good, putting your legs or whole body in a vertical position can make your muscles feel numb and hurt.
DO make a place fit your needs
Try to set up a place to work that is completely yours. When you share a workstation, you have to change the height of your computer, chair, and other things every time you sit down. Most of the time, you may decide not to adjust the workstation at all. If you are the only one using the space, customizing it will save you time and make it less painful to sit at a station that doesn't work for you.
DON'T miss lunch and make sure you drink enough water
It's easy to eat small meals throughout the day instead of three big meals. When you make a meal and drink water, you can get up, walk around, and give your eyes a break from the computer screen.
The Home Office: Ergonomic Lessons From the “New Normal” research says, many home office–based workers potentially face suboptimal working conditions. Based on 41 home office ergonomic evaluations, most ergonomic concerns related to laptop usage, nonadjustable chairs without armrests, low monitor heights, and hard desk surfaces.Ensure that you take a few steps around the room. You should aim to walk as many miles as possible during the workday, even if you're at home.