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Unlocking the Benefits of Ergonomics For A Healthier Life

stretching at deskErgonomics, an applied science concerned with designing and arranging things people use for efficient and safe interactions, can significantly transform your life. From how you sit to how you sleep, proper ergonomics can minimize aches and injuries, potentially boosting quality of life and overall productivity. Essentially, it’s an investment for a more comfortable and enjoyable life.

Ergonomics at Play, Work, and Rest

Reading a book should be relaxing and not a source of strain on your neck and back. A reading stand might be your next best friend, allowing you to enjoy reading hands-free – or consider an app that will read to you, allowing you to choose a relaxing, healthy posture.

Driving, too, has its ergonomic aspects. Ensure your seat isn’t reclined too far, lest it becomes a whiplash-inducing ramp during an accident. Also, adjusting your headrest close to your head (rather than far behind it, for your head to whip back and strike) can reduce severe whiplash risk during a collision.

Proper Lifting and Sitting Techniques

The way you lift objects affects your spine health. Use your thigh, gluteal, and core muscles for lifting. A slight forward lean can power up your lower back muscles; however, leaning too far forward might relax them and increase spinal injury risk. Imagine “hinging” through your hips, rather than your spine, to optimize power like a powerlifter.

Your chair could be your worst enemy. Spending prolonged periods sitting—especially in front of your computer or while driving— can stress your spinal discs until they begin to fail. Dr. Shaye recommends frequent “microbreaks” as short as 10 seconds every 10 minutes to maintain disc nutrition and health. It’s also important to keep your feet comfortably placed, and adjust your seat if possible so that your neck isn’t tipped too far forward or back for extended periods.

Monitor That Computer Screen

Ensure your computer screen is right in front of you. Here’s an easy technique to find the perfect position for your screen: Sit comfortably in your chair and shut your eyes. Adjust your body until you’re comfortable. When you open your eyes, you should be gazing at your screen. If the view requires you to look up, down, or sideways, then your screen isn’t ideally located. Reposition your chair, the screen, or both.

Get Sound Sleep With Proper Support

Given that we spend about 25-35% of our lives sleeping, the importance of ergonomics in our sleeping postures cannot be overstated. A supportive mattress and ergonomically correct pillows can help maintain spinal alignment and relieve your neck and shoulder stress.

We encourage you to embrace the science of ergonomics! Doing so can make a much-needed positive change in your life. For further guidance, consult Dr. Shaye at Performance Chiropractic to learn more about integrating ergonomics effectively into your wellness lifestyle.

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