Are you suffering from back pain and stress? Do you feel like you are starting to experience symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome? Don’t blame the office or the computer. In fact, point your fingers to the sedentary lifestyle that you are getting used to which is actually the reason why you are getting muscular-skeletal problems in the workplace.
The Drawbacks of All-Day Computer Work
If you think that sitting all day in front of your computer doing research, encoding, emailing, and other online work is “the” dream job, think again. While it makes you feel relaxed and comfortable, compared to physical work and field activities, truth is it is slowly destroying your health.
Sitting all day is bad for your spine because it doesn’t get to move and do its job. Thus, it often leads to back pain. The lower back is supposed to support the weight of the upper half of our body, but when you sit for a long period of time, it makes it harder to do this.
Another problem with all-day computer work is the tension and stress it brings to the fingers, hand, and wrists. Especially if a huge chunk of your work is typing and clicking, your hands may be at risk for carpal tunnel syndrome, where the nerves in that area gets twisted or damaged and thus, causing pain and swelling.
Eye strain is also a computer-related problem when you look at your screen the entire day. If your eyes easily get tired, itchy, and/or teary in the middle of your work, then it means you are overdoing it.
Staying Active in the Office
The good news is you don’t have to quit your job or look for a physical work instead. There are ways on how you can prevent these work-related problems and still manage to stay active like when you are at home or outdoors.
Remember the “e” word – as in exercise. For those who are not really keen on sweating it out, experts say that exercise need not be rigorous to be effective. Some exercises could include overhead stretch, arm circles, windshield wiper, release move, shoulder swing, side twist, combination, leg lifts, points and lifts, bottom kicks, step tap, table or wall push-ups, and head stretch. These exercises are easy, safe, short, and will effectively counter the ill-effects of prolonged sitting at work.
And all these easy yet effective work-outs can be done in the office area, as long as there is a table, chair, and a flat surface. You can even opt to get office exercising machines that can help you sweat out in the office.
For beginners, a warm-up of five to 10 minutes of stretching followed by 10 to 20 minutes of exercise three times a week will suffice. Never forget the importance of a proper warm-up; it prepares the body from prolonged immobilization for increased activity.
The exercise should then be followed by a cool-down in order to restore normal heart rate. However, a person could also suffer from over-exertion as manifested through pain in any part of the body after the exercise. To prevent this, one must “listen to the body” and know when enough is enough. Also, wear inserts under the soles for those who experienced pain on the soles of the feet after an exercise.
These steps would surely make work efficient, easy, and a lot less like “work”. So during your coffee breaks and cigarette breaks, instead of munching on those unhealthy junk foods or smoking your lungs out, try doing their healthy counterpart – exercising!