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Creating an Ergonomic Workspace in 5 Steps


86% of American workers spend the majority of their day sitting...and they hate it. Not only is sitting at a desk uncomfortable, it can be bad for your health—as can a number of other desk-related issues.

For an employee, making your office more ergonomic is the first step towards both improving your productivity and improving your body. For an employer, a more ergonomic environment will reduce both employee stress and employee injuries. Happier employees result in better work, so it may be worth it to look into more comfortable solutions with bulk office supplies. In the meantime, here are some solutions you can begin implementing now.

Habits: Improve Your Posture and Get Active

Habits can make a big difference on whether you start feeling cramped and uncomfortable while working. Your first step can be to improve your posture. Sit with your spine straight and your shoulders even. When typing, it's very easy to get into the habit of slouching. Additionally, try to get up and move at least once an hour—don't just stay at your desk the entire time.

Completing physical tasks—such as replacing the water in the water cooler—can also help you remain healthy and active. Just make sure you complete these tasks properly and avoid lifting with your back. Moving a pile of bulk office supplies may make you more active, but you also need to move them correctly to avoid injury.

Chairs: Find the Right Office Chair

There's a reason why many offices spend hundreds on individual office chairs. An office chair is often the most important piece of equipment in your office—and that's including your computer. To be ergonomically-friendly, an office chair should be fully adjustable. That includes:

  • Back adjustment and lower back adjustment
  • Adjustable arm rests that can be raised, lowered, or tilted
  • Head and neck rests

When seated in your office chair, you should be able to put your feet flat on the floor with your knees at a 90-degree angle. If you can't, you should lower or raise your chair until you can. Foot rests may also aid in improving comfort. If you want to provide for your employees, investing in a good office chair is a good place to start. It doesn’t have to cost you an arm and a leg, either—find a place that sells bulk office supplies to get a better price.

Desks: Choose Between Sitting or Standing

In recent years, many modern offices have switched over to standing desks. When standing, most people are more alert and attentive—and they're also more active. Everything that can be done at a sitting desk can be done at a standing desk as well, and it does encourage you to move around more during the day.

At the same time, standing desks do have some disadvantages. They generally don't have storage, so there's nowhere to hide things like bulk office supplies, files, and electronics. There are also times when you may just need to sit; unless your standing desk is adjustable, you'll be out of luck. Whether a standing desk makes sense to you depends on the type of work you do.

Peripherals: Position Your Mouse and Keyboard 

Carpal tunnel is one of the most common types of repetitive stress injury—and it often occurs due to poor positioning of your hands and arms. When sitting, your keyboard should be positioned so that your hands rest below your elbows, and your wrists should be supported so that they aren't at an uncomfortable angle against your keyboard and your mouse. Wrist rests for keyboards and mouse pads can help.

Eyes: Reduce Strain through Monitor Filters

If you often get headaches, you may be experiencing eye strain. For those who work frequently on a computer, eye strain can be a debilitating issue—it can take hours to recover from pushing yourself too hard. Here are a few tips:

  • Upgrade your monitor

A high resolution and a high refresh rate can reduce strain on your eyes, as images will be clearer. Refresh rates are more important if you find yourself often looking at video media.

  • Use filters

Monitor filters can reduce glare and contrast, making your monitor gentler on your eyes. Most of these screens will alter colors, however, so they may not be suitable to artists or designers.

  • Take breaks

Every hour, take a few minutes to focus on something far away from you. Looking out of an open window is a good way to let your eyes relax. 

Of course, if you continue to experience eye-related issues, you may want to check with your optometrist. It's always possible that your vision needs further correction.

An ergonomic workspace is well worth the initial investment—and you can save some extra money by doing little things around the office, such as investing in bulk office supplies. Ultimately, it should pay for itself through increased productivity and a reduced potential for stress-related injury.

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