Seattle, WA: 206-521-5676 Olympia, WA: 360-236-8748 Portland/Salem, OR: 503-768-9742 Info@SolutionsNW.com
The Ergonomic Way to Sit at Your Desk and View Your Monitor

The Ergonomic Way to Sit at Your Desk and View Your Monitor

The Ergonomic Way to Sit at Your Desk and View Your Monitor - 2024 Edition

In This Blog, You’ll Discover:

  • Ergonomic Desk Setup: Learn the critical importance of ergonomic desk design, including adjustable sit-stand desks, to prevent workplace injuries and enhance productivity. Discover how proper desk height and posture can make a significant difference in your daily comfort.

  • Proper Sitting Posture: Uncover expert tips from Solutions Northwest Inc. for maintaining a healthy posture at your desk. Find out how the right chair and posture can protect you from common workplace ailments like back pain and digital eye strain.Ergonomics Consultants, Office Assessments, | Solutions Northwest Inc.

  • Monitor Positioning for Ergonomics: Get guidance on optimally placing your monitor to reduce the risk of neck and shoulder strain. This simple adjustment can help avoid long-term issues and support a more comfortable work environment.

  • Workplace Ergonomics Assessment: Realize the benefits of professional ergonomics assessments for both in-office and remote workstations. Learn how these evaluations can prevent cumulative workplace injuries and contribute to a safer work environment.Essentials of Workplace Ergonomics: Discover the core principles of ergonomics, from desk and lighting setups to the science of creating employee-centric work environments.

The Ergonomic Way to Sit at Your Desk and View Your Monitor – 2024 Edition

Neglecting the ergonomic setup of your work desk could be a silent culprit behind long-term workplace injuries, especially if your employees are working from home and have not properly set up their workstation.

It’s crucial to understand that the core of a pain-free work experience begins with adopting the correct sitting position at one’s desk.  Using proper ergonomic design, desk workers can ward off common workplace injuries such as headaches, neck stiffness, shoulder discomfort, back pain, and the dreaded “digital eye strain” during those endless hours at the computer.

While we recommend investing in a professional ergonomics assessment for every workspace (including virtual ergonomics assessments for remote workers), here are some quick ergonomics tips to instantly ensure you are sitting at your desk and viewing your monitor the “ergonomic way,” courtesy of the ergonomics consultants at Solutions Northwest Inc.

Step One: Ensure Your Desk is Setup the Ergonomic Way

Your desk will determine not only how productive you can be, but also how comfortable. Your desk should be adjustable, and a sit-stand desk is ideal for this.

Your desk height should be about half an inch below the elbow height when you’re seated with proper posture. Since we’re all uniquely shaped, your stature will influence your desk and chair setup to a T.

If you are reading this at your work desk and realizing that your desk (or your employee’s desk) is either too low or too high, it may be time to consider hiring an ergonomics consultant to perform an ergonomics assessment.

Related article: “Sitting vs Standing at Your Desk

Ergonomics Consultants, Office Assessments, | Solutions Northwest Inc.Step Two: Learn How to Sit with Proper Posture While Working

Ensuring proper posture while seated at your computer is more than just comfort; it’s about safeguarding your long-term health. Solutions Northwest Inc. experts recommend adopting a posture where your shoulders are relaxed, not hunched or rolled forward, promoting a natural spinal alignment. Your forearms should be parallel to the floor with your wrists in a neutral position, avoiding any extreme angles that could lead to strain.

Select a chair that offers robust back support and adjustable armrests to accommodate your unique height, ensuring that both your spine and arms are well-supported throughout the workday. Your thighs should be parallel to the floor with feet planted firmly on the ground, or on a footrest if it enhances your alignment.

Remember to stand and stretch periodically – ideally every 25 minutes. This isn’t just about physical health; it’s a productivity booster as well. Using an app to remind you to take these essential breaks can help maintain your focus and energy levels, keeping you productive and pain-free.

Related article: “4 Tips to Improve Your Posture at Work

Step 3: Setup Your Monitor with Ergonomic Design in Mind

The positioning of your monitor is a critical factor in creating an ergonomic workspace. Place your monitor directly in front of you to avoid unnecessary neck and back twisting. The top of the screen should align with your eye level, promoting a natural, upright head position.

Adhere to the recommended distance from your monitor by using the length of your arm as a guide. If you hold out your arm while sitting in the proper posture, the screen should be about one arm’s length away. This helps in maintaining a comfortable viewing distance without straining your eyes, which will help you avoid “digital eye strain.”

Adjust the height so that the top of the monitor is at or just below eye level. A screen set too low can lead to a forward head posture, while a screen set too high may cause you to tilt your head back, both of which can contribute to neck and shoulder strain. Additionally, a slight tilt of the monitor can enhance visibility and reduce glare, making your viewing experience more comfortable.

Related article: “How to Prevent Digital Eye Strain while Working on a Computer

In Conclusion, Stay Proactive About Ergonomic Design in the Workplace

An unaligned monitor might seem harmless now, but it’s a slow brew to discomfort. Muscle strains and aches creep up, spelling out a saga of cumulative workplace injuries for either yourself or your employees.

The good news? It’s preventable! Small tweaks can lead to big relief and lead to happier and safer workers!

If you’re ready to take the next step, consider reaching out to Solutions Northwest Inc. for a comprehensive ergonomic assessment. Our team of ergonomics experts is equipped to guide you through every stage of the process, from initial consultation to implementation and beyond.

Visit our website or contact us directly to learn more about how we can help you create a safer, more productive work environment for your team.

 About Solutions Northwest Inc.

For a quarter of a century, Solutions Northwest Inc. has championed the cause of ergonomic excellence in Seattle, Portland, and Olympia, WA – assisting countless businesses in creating healthier and more productive workplaces.

Not based in the Pacific Northwest or need help with remote workers? Consider our Virtual Ergonomics Assessment available nationwide, a solution is always within reach.

Don’t compromise on your staff’s well-being and the overall efficiency of your workspace. Contact Solutions Northwest Inc. today and elevate your office environment. For ongoing insights and ergonomics tips, consider subscribing to our blog.

Contact the Ergonomics Experts at Solutions Northwest Inc. Below:

Multiple Locations

Corporate Office: 120 State Ave. NE #397
Olympia, WA 98501
Business Hours: 8am-5pm M-F
Corporate FAX: 360-866-4773
Email: Info@solutionsnw.com

Olympia, WA

360-236-8748

Portland/Salem, OR

503-768-9742

Seattle, WA

206-521-5676

Contact our Ergonomics Experts

Ergonomics Tips: Pros and Cons of Open Offices

Ergonomics Tips: Pros and Cons of Open Offices

Post By: Celeste McLaughlin, Ergonomics Manager
Produced by: Solutions Northwest, Inc. (Ergonomics Experts serving Washington, Oregon, and California)

“70 percent of US offices have some form of an open concept” International Facility Management Association 2018

While there are many issues to consider when designing the perfect workspace (ergonomics, safety issues, sitting vs standing, etc.), the open office space is a trend worth examining. In fact, according to the International Facility Management Association, “70% of US offices have some sort of open concept.” Despite so many offices adopting the open office, there has also been an increasing pushback to the idea. So, just what are the pros and cons of an open office environment?

Ergonomics Consultants | Solutions Northwest Inc.

The Pros

Tech companies like Facebook and Google helped make the open office environment popular and many other companies have followed suit. One of the major selling points of the open office is that it tears down cubicle walls and allows employees to openly communicate and build relationships.

The idea is that, without walls, office workers will be able to brainstorm and bond while working, ultimately becoming a greater team with greater productivity than their cubicle counterparts.

Additionally, open office spaces tend to be more affordable to build than cubicles as well as more attractive to look at in an office setting.

The Cons

While the cubicle wall sounds old fashioned, it was serving a few purposes. Having walls around you allows for you to work in privacy and focus directly on your task, which can be lost when exposed to the noise and distractions of the open office environment. In fact, “75 percent of office workers report frequent noise during the workday and 38 percent would change jobs to have an office door they could shut,” according to Gallup 2017.

While open offices are designed to promote more communication, the lack of privacy may have had a negative impact on communication. YouGov reports that “31 percent have had to go to a closet or hall to make a call and 31 percent have held back thoughts and opinions for fear of co-workers hearing and judging.”

Design the workspace that feels right for your workers

Open office layouts may increase face time, leading to stronger bonds, but it could also lead to negative communication or fear of communication due to the lack of privacy in the forced open space. Knowing there are pros and cons to having an open office, it may make sense to seek out alternatives.
 
The Hub and Spoke office design attempts to extract the best of the open office while maintaining some of the concepts of the private office design. The Hub and Spoke utilizes “a singular entryway into common spaces and hallways that spoke out to different individual offices” as described by ArchDaily. The concept is meant to be a mixture of the open office and the personal office, which allows workers the ability to collaborate, but also work on their own in private.

An important takeaway is that you should balance different concepts and create a custom space that works best for your needs.

In conclusion

Whether your workers work in a home office, open office, cubicle workstation, or other type of workstation, it is important to create a healthy work environment for your workers because it will lead to more productivity in the long run.

We recommend contacting an ergonomics expert to perform an ergonomics assessment on your workspace. For more tips about your workspace, be sure to visit and subscribe to our blog for more office and ergonomics tips from Solutions Northwest Inc., ergonomics consultants located in Washington State, Northern California, Oregon, Seattle, Olympia, Tacoma, and Portland.

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