Human beings are meant to lead an active lifestyle. Nevertheless, we all need to earn a living and many of us end up being desk jockeys and being confined to offices where we spend most of our time sitting. Whether we are answering phone calls, writing emails or participating in a meeting, most of our work is done sitting down and this places immense strain on our spine. This is why many office workers are prone to low back pain.
If this is allowed to progress further, we might end up with even bigger health issues in the future and can point to a serious underlying issue like collapse of a vertebra or spondylitis or rheumatoid arthritis. There are a few changes that you can make for the effective management of low back pain in the office:
Avoid sitting for Extended Periods: Avoid remaining in one position for a period longer than 20 minutes. Every few minutes, it would be wise to get up and stretch your muscles by moving around, like when you are making a phone call so that the muscles do not become stiff from prolonged sitting.Take stretch breaks and walk breaks to flex your muscles a bit.
Maintain Good Posture: What grandma said is right. Maintaining a good posture with your chest out and head straight is good for you. Many of us have a tendency to slouch over our computers when we are trying to focus. While this may improve our performance at work, poor posture can play a crucial role in aggravating low back pain. Keep your spine straight by ensuring your knees are positioned directly above your ankles.
Switch to an Ergonomic Chair: Many chairs to be used in the office setting are now designed based on ergonomic concepts. Adjust the settings of your chair and use its lumbar support to keep your head and neck straight.
Adjust the Height of your Workstation: Adjusting the height of your workstation to suit the nature of your work. If you need to do a lot of drawing, you may need it to be at a higher level while if you do a lot of data entry, you may need it to be at a lower level. The adjustment will also depend on your height. Your monitor should be about 2 to 3 inches above your eye level.
Don’t Cross Your Legs: While crossing your legs may superficially make you feel more comfortable, this will keep you from maintaining the straight position of your spine and can contribute to aggravating back pain in the long run.
Manju Mathew, an MBA in marketing, completed publisher training courses from the Oxford Brookes University and New York University. She started with marketing and PR roles before moving on to her current position as a full time writer. Currently living in Dubai, her life as an expat has sharpened her observation skills and flair for writing. She enjoys writing about luxury cars like Ferrari, Lamborghini, etc even if she can only dream of owning them.
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