Stand up, stretch, and sit – Maintaining good posture is critical when working at a desk

  (photo credit: UNSPLASH)
(photo credit: UNSPLASH)

Suppose the first image to pop into your head while thinking of desk work is an air-conditioned and comfortable environment where you only stress what you will serve for lunch. In that case, you should reconsider this interpretation. While many individuals deem an office job to provide the most relaxing and worker-friendly conditions, the truth is that even non-physical labor can take its toll on an employee’s health.

Back pains are among the most pressing issues for employees who sit chained to their desks for extended periods, as they can easily slip into bad habits, such as maintaining a bad posture and forgetting to stand up regularly.

If your work requires you to spend long hours at a desk, you need to pay increased attention to how you take care of your back. Here is everything that should be incorporated into your daily at-work routine to make sure you prevent back and neck pain and enjoy your job for longer.

Use an ergonomic chair

Despite the constantly growing size of the office chair industry, not many employees stop to think about how their sitting equipment interacts with their health or how they could adjust several features to their height or condition to prevent or improve chair-related problems. In light of this, ergonomic chairs are gaining traction in increasingly more employee-oriented offices worldwide due to their many advantages, like good posture support, better blood circulation, and minimized neck pain.

Switching from a swaying to a fully upright position is an everyday activity when working in the office. Still, it can often strain the knees, especially when problems are already present. For this and many other reasons, resorting to the best standing stool you can find will prove rewarding both in the short- and long-term, as it provides more posture-healthy positions, enables you to avoid perching and leaning on the desk, and facilitates mobility even in the most sedentary people.

Your chair is among the most impactful and essential choices you can make when spending long hours at a desk, so make sure you prioritize its quality, functionality, and efficiency.

Take breaks regularly

Even if you maintain perfect posture throughout the day, sitting on a chair for extended periods can harm your physical and mental health. While standing chairs are practical tools to ensure you’re increasing mobility, they are not enough to prevent health risks. Taking frequent breaks to stretch and unwind is essential to your health, helping you relax your muscles and unwind your mind to keep going with the work.

Generally, taking a break every half an hour is recommended, especially if you’re usually inactive or spend much of your day sitting. If this achievement is not possible, try at least to create a break schedule where you don’t exceed 90 minutes without standing up. The hustle culture is felt everywhere, but it is not the key to success if it harms your health in the long term.

Become mindful of your posture

Taking repetitive breaks during the workday may sometimes be challenging when juggling emails and dealing with deadlines, so it’s no wonder that you may sometimes forget to acknowledge how your body feels. Awareness of your body’s posture is even more critical in similar stressful environments when the last thing on your mind is improving your back posture.

Practicing mindfulness during the shift is not a behavior you acquire overnight but a skill that takes active effort and implication. Mindfulness can take many forms, from setting reminders on your phone to having a colleague remind you to take breaks occasionally. Block off some seconds to check in with your body, and you’re one step closer to keeping any posture-related issues at bay.

As you can see, keeping a good posture at work is easily achievable by using the right equipment, taking frequent breaks, and remembering to tune in with your health regularly.

This article was written in cooperation with Ergo Impact