Home Working Ergonomics – ‘How To’ Keep Comfy
No reason for that picture – just made me smile, and that’s no bad thing right now eh?! 🙂
So you may well be asked to work from home at some stage over the coming weeks – you’re generally not going to have a full office set up at home, so what can you do to keep comfy and productive?
Follow these simple things and all should be well:
- Fear not – it’s important to realise that most people will be fine working away from the office for a short while, even if your setup isn’t perfect. But there are some simple measures you can take to make sure you’re looking after yourself as much as possible.
- If you’re one of the unfortunate people that are already uncomfortable at your usual workstation then you will obviously need to be particularly mindful of your working position at home so do take care.
- Under UK H&S Regulations (and probably similarly elsewhere), your employer has a responsibility to look after you when you’re working – no matter what the location. But you also have a responsibility to look after yourself, take on-board the advice that they give you, and let them know if you need further assistance.
- So let’s assume you’re either working on your own desktop computer, or on a laptop – either a company laptop, or your own, and you’re logging into work systems remotely.
This is what you do:
- Avoid sitting on the sofa or bed all day – if at all possible get yourself set up at the kitchen table
- Bring your keyboard nice and close – so that your arms are dangling by your side
- Adjust the height of your chair so that your forearms are parallel with the desk – use cushions or pillows under your bum!
- Put a cushion in the small of your back so that you can relax back into the chair – comfortably upright
- If your feet can’t reach the floor when you’re sitting like this, then don’t take the cushions out from under your bum, but create yourself a footrest out of a box or similar – you’re aiming for your knees to be level with your hips
- You may be reluctant to sit this high, as your laptop screen will seem too low but, rather than lowering your seating position, you need to raise the laptop using a pile of books or whatever you have to hand. If you then plug in a keyboard and mouse you have a decent working position
- MOVE MOVE MOVE MOVE MOVE!!!! – even the so-called perfect position is no good for you if you sit in the same position all day and rarely move. Take the time to move away at least 5 minutes every hour. This is especially important if you don’t have the natural interruptions of an office environment
- MOVE MOVE MOVE MOVE MOVE MOVE – it really is the most important thing!
- Use cushions and pillows to get yourself comfy
- Sit at a table rather than the bed or sofa if possible
- Raise the laptop and use a separate keyboard and mouse
- Let your employer know if you’re struggling
So there you have it – really simple stuff, and we know that this isn’t going to cover every situation, so if you need further help then do just shout.
These are crazy times and anyone responsible for H&S in an organisation right now is working very hard to cover all bases. So please bear with them – they might not be able to make everything perfect for you in the short term, but rest assured they will be trying their best to do all that they can under the circumstances.
Stay well Peeps x