lady at home desk

Many people now suddenly find themselves working in unfamiliar environments. Some will be fortunate enough to have a study they can easily transfer to, the rest of us will have to make adjustments.

In an ideal world you’ll go and get yourself a new desk, chair, monitor stand and whatever else is required for working from home, but realistically, that’s not going to happen for many.

We’re looking to make some video’s to better help with your home office set up but in the meantime, here are a few paragraphs to help you work safely.

The three seating principles are POSTURE | FIT | MOVEMENT. Take any one of these away and we’re going to hurt. The correct task chair properly adjusted for you will help with all of these, your dining room chair with none, so we need to adapt.

Be mindful of your own body. When you sit down consider the posture. If you start to feel any pain or discomfort change something, or it will definitely get worse.

A small cushion or a rolled up yoga mat in you lumbar spine will encourage a better lordosis (spinal curve) and encourage you to sit up.

Ensure your back is at the back of the chair. If the front edge seat is then contacting the back of your leg, place a cushion or pillow behind you to reduce the seat depth.

Your feet should be flat on the floor, and at the same time, you should be able to type so that your elbows are bent no more than 90 degrees. The keyboard needs to be flat. This may be the most challenging area to accommodate with a fixed height table and chair. You may need to raise the chair to meet the table, but ensure you keep everything stable. An old telephone directory or your recently acquired stockpile of cereal boxes could possibly be used as a footrest!

Remember laptops are designed for occasional use. If it has now become your full time computer you’re going to need to separate the keyboard and monitor. If you have a spare screen use that, and place it on books if necessary so that the top of the screen is level with your eyes. If you can’t stand the built in keyboard, place the laptop on the books, and use an auxiliary keyboard and mouse.

And movement. Chopping the legs off your dining room chair and inserting springs is a non starter, so you’re going to have to do more of this yourself. A good task chair has a lot of movement built in which all benefits you: castors, swivel, tilting mechanism. And we still recommend getting up at least once an hour, even when you have all that help. So on a solid 4 legged chair you’re probably going to have to do some stretching every 15 minutes. Build movement into your routine. When you’re on the phone – stand up. Every time you go to the loo, do some stretches. Consider doing some yoga in the evening. We can’t do it in the room with a teacher at the moment but there will be plenty offering online classes.

We’re happy to help with free advice in the shop (at the moment – please call before coming) over the phone or by video call, and we’re hoping to put some helpful videos together over the next few days.

We have created a page of some of our more affordable offering on the website https://www.backworld.co.uk/homework-specials/

If you’re struggling to get comfortable, do please call.

Paul.