The impact of poor posture and unsuitable work environments is huge for office-based employees. They are the most likely to take time off sick with back problems, whilst many long term office workers suffer from chronic aches and pains. The culprit is the way we sit.
Without the right ergonomic support, human beings fall into positions which put a strain on the lower part of the spine. It often takes a conscious effort to sit upright, with head level and the back straight. Yet, doing so has a remarkable effect on general health and wellbeing.
The good news is that managers have access to all kinds of supportive office tools. Keep reading for tips on the best ways to introduce ergonomic furniture.
Keeping the Gaze Level
One common problem is the height of computer screens and displays. If they are positioned too low, as is usually the case, the user has to crane their neck to get a reasonable view. It is a bigger issue than you might think because many display stands do not rise high enough to match a strong, healthy posture. With a dual monitor stand, two screens can be held perfectly still and perfectly level all day, every day.
Supporting a Strong Posture
Good posture is something that most office workers have a vague awareness of, but don’t know how to implement. It can help if managers give out precise information, either via an office flyer or a team talk. Make sure that they understand the importance of keeping a level gaze, sitting with the spine erect (not hunched), and resting the feet flat on the floor. The upper arms are to be kept parallel to the spine, with the hands comfortably on the desk.
Raising the Armrests
Height-adjustable chairs usually come with changeable arm rests too. This is a valuable ergonomic feature because it prevents neck strains and shoulder pain. When the armrests are set too low, the body is tilted forward. It is when office workers start to inch towards the edge of the seat and curve their spines. Properly adjusted chairs provide plenty of support to the elbows and tops of the arms.
Making the Most of Lumbar Features
If you invest in ergonomic furniture, with high quality lumbar cushioning, ensure that employees use it. They should not be sat right on the edge of chairs because this renders the support pointless and they continue to place an unnecessary amount of pressure on the lower spine. Gently explain to office workers that sitting in the correct way could save them lots of pain and lost time (due to sick days) in the future.
Adjusting the Furniture
In an office, where lots of people of varying sizes are sitting, leaning, and focusing throughout the day, there is a need for adjustable furniture. Changeable monitor stands and height adjustable chairs are essential. They should allow employees to sit comfortably, with the lower back pressed into the seat and the feet flat. Perching right on the edge of the chair is a fast track to spinal pain, so avoid it all costs.
Why Ergonomic Furniture Is the Future of Offices
High-quality ergonomic furniture is fast becoming an essential part of the modern office space, rather than an optional feature. All sedentary workers should have access to tools and equipment which help them to stay as healthy as possible because this is how they produce the best results. If you want your team to perform at the highest level, give a little back and make sure that they are protected in the right ways.