COVID-19 and Poor Posture Working from Home
With the majority of Chicagoans working from home with our shelter-in-place now extended to April 30, it is making your job much more difficult to do. Whether you have kids at home or are trying to figure out what part of your home/condo to work from, working from home is proving a greater challenge and thus, increasing stress. This post will address some easy tips to avoid developing any neck and/or back related issues.
Your workspace was much more defined prior to Covid, but now working from home proves a great challenge. Now that most are home during your work weeks, it is important to avoid sitting for long periods. Most of us forget to get up at your workspaces when we get started on an assignment or juggling multiple assignments. Sitting for long periods will likely create poor posture because of workspace set up (more to come on this below). One should plan to sit no more than 45-60 minutes in their current set up to avoid increased muscle tension through your neck, upper back, shoulders, and middle back. This can result in pain and possibly headaches. Getting up and moving around for just a few minutes every hour will prevent posture from worsening.
Your workspace is likely going to contribute more to developing neck and back-related pain as working from a couch, bed, and/or leaning over a kitchen stool for long periods throughout the day can be detrimental. Trying to construct a workspace that ensures being eye level with your computer/laptop is essential. If you are vertically challenged, place a shoebox under your feet and if you are tall, place something (books, phone books, shoe boxes) under your laptop/computer to maintain proper height. These small changes will take some time to adjust to, but it will benefit you until you get back to your job’s workspace.
Lastly, activity is the last and most important component. Despite the shelter-in-place, one needs to move and exercise. With sitting more than ever now, Chicagoans must move especially as the weather improves. You are able to walk or run outside, as long as distancing guidelines are maintained. Activity is the most critical part because the majority of all gyms, and studios have closed. Moving in any way for around 30 minutes daily will minimize your muscles and your posture from worsening creating more pain. Your activity may not cause you to break a sweat, but it can prevent an injury from developing, thus requiring treatment to see a chiropractor.
These measures may not eliminate your pain completely, but will certainly help you navigate during these uncertain times. Take these tips and use it to your advantage to avoid injury and to stay healthy.
Brian Marion, DC, CCSP, ART, CKTP
Lincoln Park Chiropractic 2202 N. Lincoln Ave Suite 1 Chicago, IL 60614
(773) 248-2790 https://lincolnparkchiropractic.com