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Does your computer cripple you?

Most of us spends a lot of time sitting, in front of the computer, staring at the screen. This is normal for many, but do we do it the right way? Working from home is not new, yet it still poses several challenges. Let’s talk ergonomics!


The chair at the dining table seems like a convenient solution. It’s already there and available after all. The problem is, this is not designed to be sat on for more than an hour, let alone an entire day.

Get a chair that supports you from the bum to the knees. Set it to a height so that both of your feet are fully on the ground and they are not dangling – so your chair is too high. The back should be tall enough to reach your head and shouldn’t stop halfway to it. Your back will thank you for the lumbar support.


Invest in a standing desk. You back will thank you later down the track. Stand up every hour for 5-10 minutes.

Set the desk at a height, so your lower arm is fully supported when it is perpendicular to your upper arm. Incorrect height will result in inefficient support, which leads to muscle strain.


Do not use your display as the only source of light in the room. Make sure the ambient light of the room is around 300 to 500 lumens bright. It’s easier than it sounds. Get your phone, go to the app store and search for “lightmeter” or “lumens meter”. There are a bunch of free apps. Put the phone on your desk and see what the meter reads. Below 300 lumens, your display is brighter than the environment, but if you read more than 500, the display is the dimmest. Both scenarios stress your eyes and can easily lead to pretty bad migraines.


Your eye level should fall in the top third of your display. If the top of your display is below your eye level, you will look down. This is not good for your back and, according to recent studies, for your memory. Yeap, you read it right.

Unless you are in the creative industry, you do not need colour accuracy. Turn on the blue light filter. There is no standardised name for this feature, so you will have to consult the manual. This filter makes the image a bit warmer-looking but helps your eyes dry out slower.

Your eyes

The screen is usually about two feet from us. This puts a lot of strain on the eyes – focusing on the same spot for a prolonged period.

Give your eyes a break and do the 20/20/20. Every 20 minutes, look at something 20 feet away for at least 20 seconds. Look out your window and enjoy the view for a little while. This will help your eyes to “stretch” a bit and help your eyes get “wet” again. When we focus on one point (like a display) for a long time, we blink significantly less frequently than we should.