Is Your Typing Posture Safe?
In today’s world we inevitably have to spend some time in front of the computer typing. Did you know that without correct typing posture, your chances of being diagnosed with Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI) which is a potentially disabling illness caused by prolonged repetitive hand movements, such as those involved in computer use, is significantly increased? Symptoms include intermittent shooting pains in the hands, wrists, forearms, and back. It is important to have a correct typing position to avoid the development of RSI or other
Symptoms include intermittent shooting pains in the hands, wrists, forearms, and back. It is important to have a correct typing position to avoid the development of RSI or other pain-related diseases. Very few of us type for less than 2-3 hours a week, but the majority of us who sit for prolonged hours in front of the computer should keep the following in mind.
Head, Back & Shoulders Straight
In common language you are told to keep your head, back and shoulder straight. The upper arm should be straight and lower arm at 90 degrees straight on the table. The wrists should be at same level as the keyboard keys such that the arm muscles share the typing pressure, not only your fingers. Keep your legs straight down on the floor. The keyboard should not be hit hard and the mouse should not be gripped too tightly. Keep ample space on and under the working table. The computer monitor should be at eye-level at an appropriate distance from you.
The Ideal Typing Posture
In the ideal typing posture both the static and the dynamic muscle loads are minimized. This posture is achieved when the keyboard is below seated elbow height and the keyboard base is gently sloped away from the user so that the key tops are accessible to the hands in a neutral posture. In this position, the arms, shoulders, neck and back can relax, especially during brief rest pauses. Also, in this slightly reclined sitting position the low back rests against the lumbar support of the chair, the elbow angle is opened to promote circulation to the lower arm and hand, the abdominal angle, and the popliteal angle (behind the knees) are opened to promote blood circulation. The feet rest firmly upon the floor.
Take Regular Breaks
It is also very important to take regular breaks. It is advised to take a 5-minute break after every 30 minutes of continuous activity. Make a schedule and fix an alarm if you are already suffering from RSI to alleviate symptoms. Always sit up straight and get some exercise every day. Be especially mindful of your weight. The chair also plays an important role here. It should be non-sliding and have five point bases. Fully adjustable with height adjustments, tilts, backrest, and armrest is ideal. If you fear you have syndromes of RSI, visit a doctor. Do not let the pain increase so much as to disturb your sleep or force you to take a break.
Use Devices to Help
There are many devices available in the market to help you type in the correct posture such as work surface or ergonomic working tables. Monitor arms allow adjustment of the monitor which helps achieve the correct posture. A document stand will allow you keep the documents at eye level, thus reducing stress. Wrist rests help to use the keyboard and mouse correctly, reducing weight on your shoulders. A mouse support strap cuts down the distance between the keyboard and mouse drags it near you to correct your reaching posture and is attached to the keyboard and mouse is placed on this strap. With the correct posture and appropriate devices, you will be able to make use of your time and talent without the fear of any pain!