Ergonomic design refers to designs that prevent stress injuries that may occur due to the frequent repetition of an activity. For many office workers, the most repetitive activity is sitting down and typing. If done improperly, these repeated actions can often lead to back and shoulder pain. Hence, many offices had started using ergonomic chairs and desks for their employees. Unfortunately, Covid-19 hit us hard last year. Many offices were vacated within days and thousands of employees started working from home.
Today, amid the third wave, it is advisable to stay at home as much as possible, and the last year has demonstrated that most employees are just as dedicated workers irrespective of their locations. However- a lot of people working from home found out that rolling into bed with a laptop results in backaches and poor quality of sleep. The reports of headaches and foot pain are also increasing. Experts such as Dr Piyush Vaghasiya (Senior Orthopaedic Resident, Tejasvini Hospital and Shantharam Shetty Institute of Orthopaedics and Traumatology) say that reports of neck pain, back pain and frozen shoulders have increased since the last year, along with patients complaining of headaches and reduced focus. Dr Rajgopal, (Group Chairman Institute of Musculoskeletal Disorders and Orthopaedics, Medanta), also warns of spinal injuries and strained knees- both these locations contain a set of complex joints that can be adversely affected by poor posture. The knees can especially be affected if the feet dangle off the floor for a prolonged time. Experts are alarmed with young people, barely in their 30s, developing rounded shoulders and hunched over backs from slouching in an uncomfortable chair.
Work from home is great in many regards- it saves commute time and many executives like being in charge of their schedule. Especially the night owls- who dreaded the idea of waking up early to work- can finally shift their schedule to evening hours, where they feel they are most productive. But such benefits are negated by the aches and pains and poor posture caused by working in bed or on tables that were meant for an entirely different purpose, such as dining tables. To set up an effective home office, we recommend the following:
- A high-quality ergonomic chair: A great chair should allow you to sit with your feet flat on the ground while your back is being supported. Most furniture is designed with an average height in mind, but most people do not fall in that average category. The easiest workaround is chairs that allow height adjustment and seat pan adjustment. This is also great if the office set-up is shared between family members. A good chair should also offer adequate back support. Sitting for long hours can be very taxing for the back. Back support is crucial for spinal health. Choose one that provides multiple points of support, such as options for reclining, movable back cushions, and neck support. The top of your head should be comfortably in line with the base of your spine. Additionally, look for arm supports, and wrist supports if you use a computer mouse for long hours.
You can find great options for ergonomic chairs at shop.awfis.com.
- Lighting: Bright, white-yellow lights can help you feel more productive. Blue tones in light may lead to eye strain and headaches, whereas reddish light aids sleep. Make sure that your work area is well lit at a level that makes you feel comfortable. A great way to ensure this is to place your desk next to a window.
- Work Desk or Computer Table: Different professional set-ups require different types of tables. Your office desk should be able to accommodate your laptop, speakers, table lamp, chargers, and stationary. And it doesn’t hurt to get a desk in a finish that looks harmonious with the rest of your room. A good desk and chair will ensure a good posture and thus no health problems. To protect your eyes you can add a screen guard to your laptop or wear computer glasses. Many people also complain of neck pain due to long hours of bending down to work on their screens- a common side effect of using unsuitable tables for work. The height of your workstation should align your screen to your eye level. Be sure to measure out the floor space and the desk height you require to find the perfect desk for your needs.
Explore high quality desks at shop.awfis.com.
- Accessories: Your desk can be a very personal space. Personalization helps us feel more relaxed in a work environment. Add a plant, a picture, a poster with a quote, a calendar, or a whiteboard to the wall behind your desk as you would at your office. It also helps to have a water bottle around to keep hydrated. Small breaks are great too. Keep a book or a Rubik’s cube or other such mind-stimulator at hand.
Placing a small carpet under your workstation may also help you to visually demarcate the “work area” from the “home area”. Such mental compartmentalization is quite useful for keeping work and home separate. People who have followed this work-life balance report better quality sleep and lower anxiety levels.
Setting up a home office need not be a chore. Awfis offers a great range of products to get you started within a reasonable budget. You can find wonderfully supportive chairs for as low as ₹ 6000! You can also find minimal, functional desks with beautiful wood finishing to blend seamlessly with your décor. High quality and pleasing furniture can boost your productivity more than you might think and can help prevent painful health issues down the line. Try a good chair or a great desk and see the difference yourself!
Find some great furniture for your home office setup at shop.awfis.com.