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Some tips to help with setting up your home office

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  • Make sure that the height of the desk and chair are suitable

If your desk is high or your chair is low you are bound to sit with your shoulders hunched and that becomes uncomfortable very quickly. A fixed desk height of 700-760mm from the floor is generally accepted as ideal and will work for most height-adjustable chairs to allow you to sit with relaxed shoulders when your forearms are parallel to the desk surface.


  • Use a good-quality chair with adequate lumbar support 

Whist a stool might have worked for short times in the past if you are now working from home for longer hours you will be better off with a chair with a decent backrest to support your lumbar spine and maintain those natural curves.


  • If you use a sit-stand desk at work then consider one for home too

Whether it is a desk-top unit or a complete electric height adjustable desk, use one if you are used to completing some of your work in standing – it is great for allowing a change of posture throughout the day – the positives are moving and lubricating the joints, stimulating blood flow and increasing your metabolism. Everyone should try it.


  • Working off a laptop screen can be a no-no

Just think about it – looking down at the screen means your head tips forward and all that weight has to be held there by something – a sure-fire way to develop soreness in the neck muscles and other soft tissues.  You need to use a laptop stand or riser (in a pinch a pile of books can make a good short-term option) as well as a separate keyboard and mouse.  You could also use an external monitor if you have access to one.


  • Try to work in a room away from the other parts of your house

Fewer distractions mean you are likely to be more focused and complete your work in a shorter time period – less time at the desk is a good thing 🙂


  • Ensure your house meets the appropriate health and safety standards

It is your employer’s duty of care to protect you from increased risk of injury when undertaking the required work tasks – this includes your working environment if you have been asked to work from home.  If you have any concerns about how you are currently set up then let your employer know – they may arrange for you to undergo an ergonomic assessment to provide you with advice and recommend suitable equipment.

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