Guidelines for Good Posture at a Computer Desk
Bad office chairs causes lower back pain especially when used at a computer work station or desk. Finding the best office chair is not an easy task since there are so many to choose from. Bad office chairs help promote bad posture which can lead to chronic lower back pain and neck problems. This guide will highlight bad postures when working or socializing at a computer, what our proper posture should be and also help choose the right chair to lower back pain while sitting and show you the proper sitting posture to avoid back pain.
For those of us who spend countless hours at a desk or computer workstation, lower back pain is a constant foe. I spent several years as a computer programming consultant sitting on a wide variety of chairs that cause mild to severe lower back pain until I discovered good sitting posture to avoid lower pain even if the chair wasn’t always the best. Now I have a great chair that has eliminated lower pain completely.
However a poor chair is only one part of this story. With the popularity of laptops, we have had a tendency to move away from working at a desk to using a computer (laptop) while sitting on a couch, lying in bed or while on a bus or commuter train.
Injuries from Bad Posture
Many of us who work at a desk, or computer desks (workstations), or worst, who work at the kitchen table or dining room table, while sitting on a couch or lying down in bed do so with poor posture. Meaning that we either slouch over our computer with our back curved and our head tilted forward, thus putting pressure on the spine and neck. Over time, we will develop sore lower backs and stiff necks that are prone to muscle spasms.
Another source injuries from bad posture is working on a laptop or tablet while lying down in bed. This type of position can result in us suffering from chronic neck pain and muscle spasms. Long term practice of these bad postures and practices can lead to chronic back and neck problems.
What is Good Posture
For best posture, you first need to be sitting at a desk and not slouched on a couch or laying down in bed to have good posture while working at a computer. Until you are actually using a chair to work at a computer, you will continue to have back, neck and shoulder problems. If you don’t have them now, you will as time passes.
So what is good posture? To have good posture your computer screen must be at your eye level so that you don’t need to look down or up at the monitor. Your back should be straight and your feet must be on the floor or slightly raised using a footstool. Your forearms must either be resting on the desk, meaning that your chair’s seat must be high enough to allow your forearms to rest on the desk or they should rest on the chair’s armrest.
Please read this article on how to loosen up your shoulder muscles using Yoga
- Yoga Poses for Shoulder Flexibility
We are all guilty of rolling our shoulders forward. This bad posture is often the result of sitting hunched over a keyboard all day. This article provides step-by-step instructions and video for doing Yoga Poses for Shoulder s. These poses will help
I use one like this at work and at home and they are fantastic. The mesh back provides breath-ability and air flow while supported your back. The padded seat features a semi-soft cushion that properly supports your hips and lower back. You don't have to spend a lot of money
This one is similar to the first but less expensive. The chair has the same recommended features.
Key to Good Posture: The Chair
The key to proper good lower back support, besides good posture, is the proper chair. There are many types of chairs on the market. Some like the executive style chair feature a thick cushion seat and an equally cushioned back rest. While this might seem like a great chair, in hindsight that design offers very little support and can actually cause you problems over the long run since there is little support for your hips and as a result your lower back muscles have to force to maintain its posture and over time can cause muscle spasms and trauma. Other types of chairs offer high armrests that totally encase you in the chair with a high back. This design will make you lower back sweat and stiffer breathability and can cause cramping in your lower back. Other designs have these headrest that push your head forward and cause stiffness in your neck muscles.
There are a few features that I have found in an office chair that really make a difference. First you need to look for a chair that offers adjustable seat height so that you can adjust the seat so that your feet touch the floor. The ideal chair should also controls to adjust the back forwards or backwards since some of us have shorter legs and need to bring the back forward to support our lower backs. The backrest should be made of some type of solid mesh, to allow for good circulation of air around your back and hips.
The seat should be made of a firm cushion to make sure your hips are properly supported to remove any strain on the lower back muscles. Also make sure that the chair has adjustable armrests in case you need to raise or lower them to line up with desk where your computer is located.
I have provided a couple of suggestions for chairs that I currently use at the office and at home. They all offer the similar features and adjustment controls. They come with different price points.
Bear in mind to always have your computer screen at eye level and if you are using a laptop, you can purchase a stand so that the laptop is at eye level. Of course you will need a keyboard.
Take care of your back. There is nothing more annoying and painful and tiring as a sore lower back.