Ergonomic workstation recommendations

  • Change your seat height so your forearms are parallel with the floor, shoulders relaxed and elbows by your side
  • If this causes your feet to lift off the floor, place a footrest under your feet
  • When looking straight ahead, your eyes should be in line with the top of your monitor
  • Your head should be held in a comfortable position allowing shoulders to be relaxed down whilst hands rest on keyboard
  • Sit your buttocks all the way back in your chair to use the backrest to support the arch of your lower back
  • With your buttocks sitting all the way back in your chair, you should be able to fit 3-4 finger widths in between the back of your knees and the edge of your chair. If the back of your knees are touching the edge of the seat, your chair may be too large
  • If your armrests are restricting your ability to pull your chair in under your desk, remove or lower them
  • Your keyboard and mouse should be positioned 5cm from the front edge of your desk so that you are able to reach it comfortably with your elbows by your sides (you should not have to reach for your keyboard or your mouse)
  • Your wrists should rest in a neutral position when typing (lay the keyboard legs flat)
  • Try not to rest your wrists on the desk when using your keyboard and mouse
  • Your telephone should be moved within easy reach and preferably on the opposite side to your mouse. Do not cradle your telephone handset between your ear and shoulder when in use – if your work requires taking a lot of phone calls, a hands-free headset is advisable
  • Depending on the type of work you do, a document holder / micro-desk may be beneficial. Documents should be placed on the desk in between your keyboard and monitor or on a document holder to the side of your monitor
  • Make yourself familiar with short cut keys that are available on the software that you use so that you can vary between keyboard and mouse use
  • Take regular breaks from sitting every 30-45 minutes (walk around the office or at the very least, stand to stretch at your workstation)
  • If you have a sit-to-stand workstation, rotate between sitting and standing every hour
  • Do not spend prolonged periods of time on a laptop. Use an external keyboard/mouse and laptop stand to ensure an upright posture when using laptops for prolonged periods.

General overall muscle tone/strength will help facilitate postural endurance so make sure that you keep up regular physical activity.  Speak to your physio at Back2Balance Physiotherapy for recommendations on how to strengthen your back for work!