These days, we spend more time than ever at our computers, whether we’re at work or at home. This may be good news for our productivity, but it can put a strain on our bodies – particularly if the devices we’re using aren’t very well-designed. Over a long period of time, using non-ergonomic devices will take their toll, leading to debilitating conditions like back pain and carpal tunnel syndrome.
Fortunately, modern technology has responded to the need for gadgets to be a little bit more human-friendly, and we now have a range of ergonomic devices at our fingertips for the home and office. Here are ten common devices and furnishings that you should consider:
A good office chair should have an adjustable seat, back and arm rests, and lumbar support for your back. As the lumbar spine has an inward curve, the chair should have lumbar adjustment to reflect this. This article discusses the characteristics of an ergonomic chair in more detail.
2. Laptop Stand
Laptops are undoubtedly very handy devices, but they’re not great for working long periods of time. However, laptop stands like these can make a big difference by re-positioning the screen and keyboard to a more comfortable level – especially if you’re working in bed or on the couch.
Ordinary mice can put a strain on your forearm over a period of time, but ergonomically-designed ones offer a more natural grip and better support, as well as assuming a more natural wrist position.
Similarly, ergonomic keyboards have padding that helps to support the wrists in a more natural position. This can help to reduce muscle strain and carpal tunnel syndrome.
The desk itself is often overlooked in ergonomic assessments, but there are height-adjustable models out there that can help people of all sizes find a level that’s comfortable for them.
A simple adjustable footrest under your desk helps to reduce pressure on your lower back while elevating your legs.
Having the right light levels at your desk is important to avoid eye strain and headaches. LED task lighting is easy on the eyes and low-power to boot, and desks should be positioned to minimize screen glare.
While the humble pen may be less common now than it used to be, it can certainly help to use the ergonomic kind, which features a split in the middle for a more comfortable grip. If you spend a lot of time writing by hand, you should consider one of these.
Handheld calculators are often not particularly grip-friendly, but there are quite a few models out there designed with ergonomics in mind. This can be particularly useful for anyone who needs to perform calculations while doing other work at their desk.
That’s right, there is software out there that can help keep you in good habits! Apps like AntiRSI will remind you to take regular breaks from work and even suggest stretching exercises.