SITTING CORRECTLY IN THE OFFICE: We PEOPLE spend a large part of our day sitting. For our body, which was actually born to run, these long periods of sitting are a great burden. Back, neck and headaches are the result and are now one of the most common diseases of population. In order not to let pain arise and, above all, to prevent chronic illnesses, you should prevent it at an early stage. As a prophylaxis, in addition to regular daily exercise, one thing is particularly important: the correct sitting posture at the desk. In this article we show you what you should consider when sitting in the office and how you can also bring some movement into your everyday work.
From hunter-gatherer to desk stool
Our ancestors were on their feet all day. In search of food, they traveled long distances every day collecting and hunting. Sitting was rather the exception. Fortunately, today we don’t have to hunt our food anymore. However, this and some other amenities of the modern world have brought about a completely different change for us: We spend a lot of time sitting today. Every person sits an average of 6.5 hours a day, a fifth even manage nine or more hours.
The problem: Our body is oriented towards an upright posture. Due to the lack of movement, our muscles and joints are atrophied. As a result, we literally collapse. This leads to tension and pain. In a 2017 a survey , 17 percent of all those surveyed stated that they suffer from back pain several times a week. Ten percent even struggle with it every day. The Techniker Krankenkasse also reports more than 38 million visits to the doctor due to back pain each year.
But pain is not the only consequence. Sitting for a long time also generally harms our health. Researchers have also linked hypertension, diabetes and even some types of cancer directly to excessive sitting. Studies have even shown that people who sit more than six hours a day have a 20 percent lower life expectancy. Terrifying numbers, right? It is not for nothing that it is often said that sitting is new smoking.
Always keep moving!
But what can you do specifically to reduce your risk and do something good for your health? The secret recipe is – you guessed it – regular exercise. The WHO recommends at least 30 minutes a day. What doesn’t sound like much at first, is still not so easy for many to implement. Above all, because more and more people are working at their desks and are therefore “forced” to sit for several hours.
Sitting correctly in the office – our tips for you
The good news: With the right tips and tricks, you can incorporate a little more exercise into your everyday office life and thus do something for your health during working hours. And even if you just have to sit in front of the computer, you can do something for your body and prevent pain with the correct sitting position at the desk.
We will show you what is important when sitting correctly at the desk and how you can keep moving in your everyday work.
Find the right seat height
When setting your desk chair, the correct seat height is crucial. The important thing is: If you are sitting at the desk, you should be able to place both feet firmly on the floor. And without you having to slide off the backrest. The thighs should be horizontal or slightly sloping and there should be at least three fingers between the edge of the chair and the back of your knees. With some office chairs, you can even adjust the depth of the seat. This ensures optimal blood circulation to your legs.
Make sure your legs don’t dangle. If you are too small and you should not be able to adjust the height of your desk, you should get a footrest . Depending on the price category, you can also adjust the angle of inclination. In general, you should also make sure that you still have enough freedom of movement under the desk.
The backrest, an important support for your back
In addition to the correct seat height, a straight back is particularly important when sitting at a desk. The back of the chair should support your back slightly. In the lower area, good desk chairs usually have a curvature that should be approximately at the height of your belt line. It is optimal if your upper pelvic area touches the chair. In addition, the back should go with your torso when you lean back. Under no circumstances should it push you forward, because this way you automatically assume a slumped sitting position. It is optimal if your pelvis is pushed slightly forward.
At eye level with the screen
Your monitor should be at least an arm’s length away from you so that your shoulders and neck can be as relaxed as possible. The further away, the better it is – also for your eyes. You should also adjust your table, desk chair and monitor so that the first line of the screen is at eye level. Also tilt your screen back slightly so that your neck is optimally stretched and there is no tension.
keyboard and mouse
The keyboard and mouse should be level with your elbows and palms. So make sure that you adjust the forearm supports to the appropriate height. In addition, you should not use the keyboard when it is folded up, as this is not good for your wrists.
If you want to do something good for yourself, treat yourself to an ergonomic mouse . While you have to twist your wrist unnaturally with a conventional mouse, the hand position with an ergonomic mouse remains neutral. So the tendons are relieved and you prevent the so-called “mouse arm”.
Make sure you exercise regularly – SITTING CORRECTLY IN THE OFFICE
The important thing is: even if you have found the optimal sitting position for you, you should not sit rigidly all day. Because keeping the same posture is also not healthy. Therefore, make sure to exercise regularly despite everything. This is how you relax your muscles and tensions are released.
For example, use your breaks for a short walk in the fresh air. The movement is good for your body and your brain also has some time to switch off and fill up with fresh oxygen. This gives you new energy for the rest of the working day. But even during working hours, you can always install small “movement units”. Why not just make calls while standing, for example? Or you’d rather drop by three offices in person instead of writing an email. Or just take a minute and do a few simple stretching exercises.
You see, it doesn’t take a lot of time and effort to incorporate a little exercise into your everyday office life. Just consciously pay attention to a little more activity – you will notice that even the few minutes are good for you.
Working while standing? It’s a pleasure!
Maybe you’ve heard of height-adjustable desks. At the push of a button, they can be converted from a “normal” desk to a standing desk in no time at all. So you can stand up in everyday office life and do something good for your body. Unfortunately, very few companies nowadays provide such tables to their employees, because standing desks are not cheap. But asking costs nothing: maybe your company is open to your proposal? And if you already have back problems, you can even have a height-adjustable desk prescribed by your doctor in some cases. It’s best to inquire.SITTING CORRECTLY IN THE OFFICE
But be careful, because the same applies here: It’s the mix that matters Working all day standing is also not healthy because, for example, your hip joints will be put under too much stress. As is so often the case in life, the more variety, the better.
If you would also like to work standing up from time to time and are looking for an affordable solution, a standing desk attachment could be the right choice for you. These come in all possible forms and price ranges. However, such an attachment is only really practical if you are working with a laptop.
Do something good for your health
In this blog article you have already learned some important things to watch out for when sitting in your everyday office life. Even if it is not always so easy in stressful everyday work: Just take a few minutes and adjust your chair, table and screens so that you have found the optimal sitting position for you. You are already doing a lot for your health and hopefully you will be spared from annoying back and headaches in the future.
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