In 2019 it was said that around 30% of UK employees worked from home (Office of National Statistics) those figures have risen considerably in the last 15months with many employers confirming that employees will continue to have remote working for the foreseeable future.
As an Osteopath and Whole Life Coach I continually advise my patients and clients on the benefits of good posture. Regardless of whether we are continuing to work from home long term there are lots of simple things that can help maintain our wellbeing and general health.
Sitting for long periods of time can compress the nerves in the lower back or cause headaches when sitting at the desk with our chins held forwards staring at the screen. In addition sitting crossed legged can cause unnecessary pressure on the knees and hips and may lead to sciatic pain or joint dysfunction.
Here are 7 simple things you can do to main good posture whilst working from home:
1) Have your screen directly in front of you at eye level. A good guide is around arm’s length away with the top of the screen at around eye level.
2) Avoid reflections or glare on your screen by positioning away from direct sunlight – this will help prevent you from twisting or angling your head to see the screen.
3) Ensure you have the keyboard directly in front of you so that you are sitting straight with your elbows comfortably at your side and your arms at approximately 90degrees (L- shaped) [if using a laptop rather than a desktop try to get a separate keyboard].
4) Sit with your feet flat on the floor or on a footrest – avoid crossing your legs whilst sitting at the desk
5) Avoid slouching in your chair and sit with your lower back supported so that you maintain the natural curves of your spine. Your knees should be slightly lower than your hips.
6) Stay hydrated it will help the functioning of your joints and muscles can help regulate body temperature and promote healthy skin
7) Get up and move – try to walk away from your desk or working area at least every 40 minutes – our bodies are designed to move and function more efficiently when we do
Good posture is likely to prevent you having headaches, general aches and pains as your body is working more efficiently. Research has suggested that an active body can enhance your cognitive function, self-esteem, improve sleep, cognitive function as well as boost your confidence. Seems like a really easy win! So why not add in a 30-minute walk to further boost the effects on your well-being and posture.
About the author
Phyllis’ interest in health and wellbeing began in her teens as a result of sustaining sports related injuries and receiving treatment. In her early 20’s she had to have a series of surgeries which sparked her interest in women’s health and the mindset of coping with unexpected difficulties. After a few years working as a Building Surveyor in Environmental Health, Phyllis realised that helping people with their housing was not enough. Her passion lay in supporting and empowering women with their health and confidence. As a result, she retrained in the early 1990’s as a complementary therapist, culminating in 2002 when she obtained her degree in Osteopathy. She subsequently completed training in clinical Pilates, Master Practitioner of NLP, has a qualification in Hypnotherapy and a MSc in Sports Injury Management.
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