From the neck to the pelvis, pain is too often a daily reality for many office workers. The reasons for this are many, but the problem generally has two main causes: poor posture and repetitive use, which together can lead to injury and strain. Truly effective prevention and treatment from desk job pain requires solutions customized for every region of the body.
1) Neck and Shoulders
Pain in the neck and shoulders is almost always caused by poor posture. In today’s desk-centric office environment, that most often means hunching over a keyboard or straining to see a computer screen. An ergonomic setup is crucial for prevention. Your desk, for example, should be at such a height that you can easily hover your hands over a keyboard without straining your wrists too far up or down and so that you can keep your elbows bent at about a 45 degree angle. If you work on smaller devices, it’s wise to invest in a laptop and tablet stand so that you can raise the screen to such a level that your neck remains in a neutral position. This is best paired with an ergonomic keyboard and mice to create a workspace that’s on par with an ergonomic desktop setup but with mobile devices.
To prevent pain in your middle and lower back, avoid carrying any heavy loads. If your job does involve lifting, make sure to practice proper technique, lifting from your legs rather than from your back. When sitting behind a desk, ensure that your chair has plenty of lumbar support. It’s also a good idea to get up and stretch your back regularly to challenge the muscles to work in a different way and to prevent strain.
Sitting all day puts a lot of strain on your hip flexors and rotators. Again, getting up and moving frequently is a great way to prevent this pain. However, you can even stretch your hips while sitting, simply by drawing one foot up to the opposite knee so that your leg forms a four and leaning gently forward.
Desk job pain can affect every part of the body, but there are many ways to prevent pain. For more great tips, we highly recommend reading, Don’t be a Tech Neck: Top Tips for Staving Off Back Pain.
What measures do you take to stay comfortable throughout the day? Let us know in the comments below.