How to Create an Ergonomic Computer Workstation
An ergonomic office chair and an adjustable keyboard tray are the building blocks of an ergonomic workstation.
Ask yourself these questions:
- Does your chair fit?
- Is your keyboard properly placed?
- Is your monitor positioned correctly?
- Do you reach for your mouse?
- Is there enough light?
If your answer is yes to any of these questions, it may be time to consider replacing them, or augmenting them with supplemental ergonomic products like a:
Monitor placement and workplace lighting are also important.
Use the following guidelines to help you evaluate your workstation ergonomics:
- 1. Adjust the height of the seat so that the work surface is elbow high.
- 2. Place feet on the floor. Thighs should be parallel to floor, with the backs of the knees slightly higher than the seat, or knees level with your hips.
- If your chair doesn't allow for this, you might consider a footrest.
- 3. An apple should fit between the back of your calf and the front of the seat edge.
- 4. Armrests should support both forearms and slide under work surfaces when not in use.
- 5. The backrest should push your lower back forward slightly.
- 6. The seat of your chair should have a rounded, "waterfall" edge.
If your seat does not meet these criteria, maybe you need an ergonomic office chair!
Your Keyboard and Mouse
- To avoid carpal tunnel syndrome, tendinitis, and fatigue it is essential that your forearms, wrists, and hands should be straight and parallel to the floor.
- Your keyboard should be close enough so you do not have to reach for it. If you have your keyboard on your desk, we highly recommend moving it onto a keyboard tray, to bring your forearms parallel with the floor.
- Your mouse should also have a tray or surface to keep your mouse on. You should not have to reach up or too far to the side. A mouse tray works wonders.
- Reach out and touch your monitor. Ideally, you will graze the monitor with your fingertips.
- Close your eyes and relax. Where you first gaze when you open your eyes is the place to put the center of your screen. Usually, the top border of your monitor screen will be level with your eyes. A monitor arm is indispensable for positioning your monitor.