Feeling aches and pain? It could be your work from home set up

Posted at 9:19 AM, May 11, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-12 10:46:03-04

TAMPA, Fla. — Are you feeling aches and pains after working from home for weeks or even months now? Where and how you're working could be to blame.

Raina Brautigam, Injury Prevention Coordinator at Tampa General Hospital, says it's okay to work on your couch or bed for short periods but avoid camping out there for hours.

"When you get working in a recliner, your body is not aligned, and those postural imbalances are going to increase," she said. "And when we have postural imbalances, we're at higher risk of an injury."

Brautigam says people working on laptops face the most challenges.

"Laptops are really meant to be used for short periods of times," she said. "They're made to be portable and give us that access, but they're not developed in order to give you healthy positioning."

She suggests making some simple adjustments, so you're still following ergonomic recommendations:

Step 1: Make sure to have a chair that provides back support.

Step 2: Support your feet with a footrest.

Step 3: Have your keyboard is at elbow level.

Step 4: Use an external keyboard and mouse and raise your laptop.

"You want your monitor to be about arms distance when you're sitting back, and you want to the top of your monitor to be at eye level."

Lastly, Brautigam recommends taking a break for five minutes every hour to stand up, do stretches or breathing exercises.