Posture When Working From Home
Posture when working from home
-We’re all spending more time at home, whether or not formally working from home. There is plenty of advice on how to have a good work setup at home, but I thought I’d share my best tidbits, and a few choice exercises to help your posture.
1. Avoid the couch slouch: lots of time spent on your tablet or phone on the couch, or in the bed, with your entire spine flexed, puts a huge strain on your spinal ligaments and nervous system. This can bother the discs in your neck and low back, pull on the ulnar nerve into your arms (anyone else getting tingly pinky fingers?), and stress out your upper back and ribs.
2. When sitting to work: try to sit so that your feet are firmly on the floor, and your hips and knees both have a 90 degree bend in them. Sit so that you are in the middle of your sit bones-not overarched forward, and not slumped back, sitting on your pockets. This should allow your whole spine (and head) to stack over your pelvis like building blocks. Your arms should be by your side or slightly in front of your torso, not reaching far forward to your computer. Your monitor should be at eye height. You may have to consider using shoe boxes or books under your feet or monitor, or order an external monitor or keyboard to make your ergonomics better.
3. Try to change position regularly, every hour if possible. I know, that seems like a lot. Take walks through the day, and schedule your exercise like any other meeting, to make sure it gets done.
4. Three of my favorite posture exercises get the upper thoracic spine moving-if your ribcage is stiff and flexed, you’ll never get your head over your neck. I love
a. Face pull to wall angel:
b. Toy soldiers on a foam roller or yoga mat (or even just standing):
c. thoracic range of motion (seated or in half kneeling):
Hope these are helpful! If you have any questions or would like an evaluation in person or via telehealth, reach out at DrLaren@RusinPT.com or 301-569-0009