Can we talk ergonomics please?

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Amanda Hutchenson
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Can we talk ergonomics please?

Post: #285112 Amanda Hutchenson
Thu Aug 13, 2015 8:36 am

Hey guys,

So I suffer quite bit from muscle pain and headaches all caused by having incredibly tight muscles throughout my neck and shoulders. This has been a problem for many many years.

I work in front of a computer writing articles all day, so my arms are generally held in the same position all day long. It definitely doesn't help. Plus my desk seems to actually be up too high, so my wrists are at a strange angle all day as well. And I carry a backpack, but I figured a backpack is better than a purse since it doesn't weigh down only one shoulder.

I don't know whether I should invest in a wrist rest (especially if the desk is so high), or ergonomic keyboard and ergonomic chair. What are your opinions on ergonomic stuff? Worth the investment or no?

Of course getting regular massage therapy would help too, but that's not covered under my health insurance, so I have to consider the cost. Plus, this is more of a treatment and not a cure. I need to figure out how to fix the problem, not just treat the symptoms of the problem.

Any help would be helpful.

Thanks!

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Green Aura
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Re: Can we talk ergonomics please?

Post: #285115 Green Aura
Thu Aug 13, 2015 10:20 am

If you're living in the UK (which I assume you are if you're buying Lush products) then have a look a the Health and Safety Executive's web page on office design or back pain - I can't remember the exact name but it should be fairly easy to locate, before you part with any money.

They have an excellent booklet on setting desk, chair, monitor etc positions to minimise the problems you've described.

Yoga, stretching and resistance band workouts are also great ways to combat them too. If you work from home you should easily be able to fit some of these in somewhere.
Maggie

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Amanda Hutchenson
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Re: Can we talk ergonomics please?

Post: #285116 Amanda Hutchenson
Thu Aug 13, 2015 2:00 pm

Green Aura wrote:If you're living in the UK (which I assume you are if you're buying Lush products) then have a look a the Health and Safety Executive's web page on office design or back pain - I can't remember the exact name but it should be fairly easy to locate, before you part with any money.

They have an excellent booklet on setting desk, chair, monitor etc positions to minimise the problems you've described.

Yoga, stretching and resistance band workouts are also great ways to combat them too. If you work from home you should easily be able to fit some of these in somewhere.


Thanks for the tips; however, I am not in the UK. I am actually in Germany, and we have LUSH here too. Fun fact, LUSH is actually Canadian, so it is becoming quite the international brand. I moved to Berlin from Toronto almost 9 months ago. I was so excited to find out that they had LUSH here.

Back on topic. I will definitely check out the site that you suggested. Regardless of where I am, it seems like these guidelines would be helpful to know. So thank you. And I do in fact do yoga, and it does help a little, but I find that it isn't enough.

I was actually looking into other ergo products and came across some ergonomic backpacks, which seems really cool, although I have no idea how it actually works. Plus it looks like it's only for kids so far.....? Still a neat idea though. I wonder if anyone is making adult bags like this? Although I guess if I really wanted to give my shoulders a rest, I could use a wheely bag.

ina
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Re: Can we talk ergonomics please?

Post: #285120 ina
Fri Aug 14, 2015 1:39 pm

Actually, Lush gives me a headache just walking past one of their shops, it has such strong smells (stink, in my view!). But everybody likes to smell different things.

The first thing I would do is raise your seat. I find that most people sit far too low for computer use. Laptops are also simply wrong for extended use - the screen is far too low...
Ina
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Re: Can we talk ergonomics please?

Post: #285127 Uller
Sun Aug 16, 2015 2:24 pm

Well, Lush are definitely a UK company not Canadian - they evolved from Cosmetics to Go which was started in Poole, Dorset by a couple of people who made products for The Body Shop when it first started in the 1970s.

On to ergonomics. I have also suffered a lot from headaches and neck/shoulder pain, thanks in part to spending many hours a day sitting at a desk. I used to see an osteopath once a month and also had massage monthly. Since leaving the office job 4 years ago, I haven't needed either. I think there are a few things you could do before spending money on ergonomic stuff. Firstly, as Green Aura said, check out the HSE site for their advice about correct positions for chair, screen etc. If you use a laptop rather than a desktop computer for instance, your screen will be much too low for long term use so a separate screen might be a better investment than anything else. Also check your own posture (I was the world's worst sloucher) and make sure you take regular breaks, learn some stretches for your back/neck etc that you can do at your desk. I also had severe tendonitis in one wrist so trialled a huge range of different equipment and only really found two things that helped - using a headset if you are on the phone a lot, and an ergonomic keyboard which changes the angle of your wrists as you are typing.

Also don't forget that everything is connected. Although the pain might be in your neck/shoulders, it doesn't mean that is where the problem is. My massage therapist identified a spot much further down my back that was getting locked up regularly and most of the work the osteopath did was in that area - freeing that up helped my neck/shoulders. The massage therapist also pointed out that I was flat footed so I saw a podiatrist and started wearing orthotics which made a big difference - corrects your arches, which straightens your spine, which helps your posture etc etc. I also had a lot less neck pain once I started using the ergonomic keyboard, even though I was using that for my wrist.
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