5 Steps to Better Computer Posture and Less Back Pain and Headaches

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Whether you are a fellow blogger, or you work in a sit down job using a computer, or just use your computer at home a lot, poor posture can lead to pain in back or headaches. It seems like everyone “knows” that to have good posture, you should “sit up straight” but there is more to it than that.

I’m going to share 5 easy steps you can take to improve your posture at a desk. My daughter is helping me out by being my model.

1. Sitting Up Straight Does NOT Mean Pulling Your Lower Back In.

Sitting Up Straight Means Your Spine Should be Aligned

To be sitting up straight means that your spine should be straight from your neck to your tail bone. Often times we think we are sitting up straight but we are really bending too much and making our lower backs go in and sometimes our heads go back too far. I told my daughter to sit up straight and this is is how she sat (left.) Just by having her pull her stomach back in a little and her neck forward, she was all of a sudden sitting properly, with her spine aligned.

2. Feet Should Be Flat On the Floor and Supported If You Can’t Reach

Feet Should Be Flat On the Floor Or Supported - Not Tucked Under

I am guilty of this one all the time (even now… ooops!) Your feet should be flat on the floor, not tucked under your chair or tucked under your bottom. (left) If your feet can’t properly reach the floor and you can’t lower the chair, then you should have a small stool or box under your feet as a support. (right)

3. Your Whole Body Should Be In Line


Not only should your spine  be aligned but so should your thighs, legs and feet. Your thighs should be parallel to the floor and your feet should be under your knees.

4. Keyboard Should be Arms Length Away and Desk at Elbow Height

Keyboard or Desk Height

The table and keyboard above are NOT at the right height for my daughter. In the picture on the left, the table is about an arms length away but is too high. You can tell because her arms should be parallel to the floor just like her thighs are. Her upper arm should be perpendicular to the floor. In the picture on the right, I moved the table forward a bit. Her forearm is a bit more straight but the table is too far away. The problem with this is she will most likely lean in to see or reach better.

5. Take Frequent Breaks

Take Frequent Breaks From Desk Work

The most important thing is to take frequent breaks. Sitting for too long, even the correct way is not good for anyone. It’s said you should take a 15 minute break every hour. Even if that’s not possible, I try to get up out of the chair at least once an hour to stretch my legs and my eyes. After looking at a screen up close, look at something far away (like down the street) to give your eyes a rest. Walking around or laying down will help rest your back.

Be Safe!

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