Dining ‘Al Desko’?

22 Sep 2011

The ‘at-desk’ lunch is an all too common feature of the modern working life, but could spending too much time sitting at the desk be taking its toll on posture?

Working nine-to-five with an hour-long lunch break appears to be a thing of the past, with pressures in the office meaning we spend more and more of our time pinned to our desks. As a result it appears many are not only working longer hours, but also allowing our workstations to double as canteen benches, as we flit from spreadsheet to lunchbreak without moving from our seat. With research from the British Chiropractic Association (BCA) showing that 51% of Brits suffer from some form of back pain, the importance of movement and alternating seating positions throughout the working day could not be clearer.

Tim Hutchful, BCA chiropractor says: “It is no surprise that people are working longer and harder than ever before, however, it is important to realise the implications of this on the health and well-being of your back after a full eight hours or more sat in the same position. Getting away from your desk at lunchtime and at regular intervals throughout your working day is vital, even if it’s just for 10-15 minutes. Otherwise, a simple stretch can relieve built-up tension in your lower back after being seated for a long time. In the long run, the result is that you will ultimately feel better and be more productive for the remainder of the day.”

To help prevent the effects of back pain while at work, the BCA offers the following advice:

  • Relax when sitting into your chair, making sure you have your bottom against the seat back with your shoulder blades touching the back rest of the chair.
  • Make sure your feet touch the floor (or use a foot rest).
  • There should be space between the front of your seat and back of your calves.
  • Your hips should be higher than your knees (tilt the seat).
  • Arms should be flat and your elbows level with the desk or table you are using. Use a seat with arm rests.
  • Take regular breaks. Never sit at the computer for more than 40 minutes; less if possible.
  • When you take a break, walk around and stretch a little; do something completely different.
  • Remove any obstacles from under your desk to ensure you have enough leg room.

Exe Chiropractic Clinic is located in central Exeter. Chiropractic is a safe, non-invasive treatment approach to musculoskeletal problems (lower back pain, neck pain, headaches). To book a consultation with a chiropractor call us on 01392 690200 or email us on info@exechiropractic.co.uk. We look forward to seeing you soon!

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