What is posture?
Posture is used to describe your body’s position when you are sitting, standing or lying down.
Work life poses many challenges when it comes to maintaining proper posture. It is easy for employees to slouch on their office chairs, assuming poor postures. Bad posture isn’t just a cosmetic issue as it can lead to serious back, neck and shoulder injuries. The negative effects of bad posture go beyond physical pain. It can also affect hormone levels as well as reduce the effectiveness of breathing.
Often, posture problems are more pronounced in people who sit most of the day, including office workers.
Thus, effective office ergonomics must be implemented at the workplace to help prevent or minimise the occurrence of posture-related issues. Luckily, the main factors influencing office posture and ergonomics are totally controllable and not hard to change.
How to have good posture
There are several ways to improve poor posture, especially for workers who sit on an office chair for most of the day.
1. Move frequently
Prolonged static posture is the enemy. The healthy body can only tolerate staying in one position for as long. Holding the same position slowly diminishes elasticity in the soft tissues (muscles, ligaments, and tendons in the back). This allows stress to slowly build up, causing discomfort.
The solution is to change position from time to time. Stand, stretch or even take a short walk. Alternate your posture for some time to allow your body tissues to regain the elasticity needed to protect the joints.
2. Implement office ergonomics
Office ergonomics can help you improve your posture and decrease fatigue, discomfort and physical stress while also increasing comfort and productivity. Although personalising your workspace may command investments in both time and money, the payoff will well be worth it.
Considerations should be given to the essential work accessories, the layout of equipment on the desk, and furniture positioning in the room. Your office chair, desk, computer monitor and keyboard should be well-positioned to avoid affecting your posture and causing undue stress to your spine.
3. See a professional
Engaging a professional can help improve your posture as well as that of employees in the workplace. Every office worker is unique and personalised care can help overcome posture-induced conditions or chronic pain.
Good posture is essential for all office workers and it can have a positive effect on one’s general wellbeing. Bad posture has multiple negative effects on health and considering the amount of time the average office employee spends at the workstation; it is a significant workplace hazard.
At Recovery Partners, our consultants can assist you in providing postural re-education to employees and help improve office and workstation ergonomics. The aim is to prevent bad posture and improve the health of workers. A healthy workforce is a productive workforce.
Find out more about our Wellbeing Services
Our consultants love to have a chat, so go ahead and give us a call on 1300 OHS RTW (647 789) or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Disclaimer – these articles are provided to supply general safety information to people responsible for OHS in their organisation. They are general in nature and do not substitute for legal and/or professional advice. We always suggest that organisations obtain information specific to their needs. Additional information can be found at www.workcover.nsw.au
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