Back Pain? Here’s what you should be doing in the Office

Back Pain? Here’s what you should be doing in the Office

Lower back pain can be an employer or an employee’s worst enemy. Not only can ongoing back issues cause serious long term damage but can drastically affect productivity at work.

But what can you do about back pain especially when you’e confined to the desk of an office job?

We’ve pulled together a few back care tips to help you  cope with any discomfort. But more importantly what you need to look out for in an office chair to avoid any such injuries.

Take a look below:

The Effects of Work Related Injury

The Chartered Society of Physiotherapy have estimated that some UK companies have lost up to $4.5 million annually due to suffering productivity. These numbers are a result of absenteeism, injuries, and notably employees working uncomfortably.

Even more, the UK Health and Safety Executive (HSE) state that there were 28.2 million working days lost due to health and safety related injuries in 2013/14. Of these days, 8.3 million related solely to musculoskeletal disorders.

Sitting with Back Pain

Please note that while the following advice can really help you cope with the pressures of back pain in the office, the Rainbow Zebra team are certainly not doctors.

The key to recovering from acute lower back pain is maintaining the normal curvature of the spine. Ideally this would require minimal sitting time, but since you’re likely an office employee you’ll need to follow these tips instead:

  • Support your lower back with additional support between your spine and the chair
  • Adjust your chair to the correct height in order to reduce strain on your back and relieve any discomfort
  • Rest your feet flat on the ground to help keep your back in a neutral position and again relieve your discomfort

Staying Active in the Office

Prolonged static posture is not good for the back, so you should therefore make some effort to move around the office.

Remember to stand, stretch, and walk for a few minutes every hour. A twenty minute walk at lunchtime can promote healthy blood flow that brings important nutrients to all the spinal structures. Movements will help keep your joints, ligaments, muscles, and tendons loose which in turn promotes an overall feeling of comfort, relaxation, and ability to focus productively.

Choosing the Right Office Chair

Unless you’ve already adapted to a standing or treadmill desk your work life most likely involves a steady and secure relationship with your sub-par swivel chair. And as you may have already discovered sitting down for lengthy amounts of time can have an impact on your health.

Therefore the right chair can make all the difference to your work life. And we’d suggest you look out for ergonomic features to truly ensure reduced risk.

What is an Ergonomic Chair?

Ergonomics is the science of designing furniture that conforms to what is easiest and healthiest for the human body. The goal referring to office furniture in particular is for greater physical comfort, improving efficiency & productivity, promoting wellbeing, and preventing injury. In fact, an ergonomic chair has been specifically designed to provide complete rest and support to the main structures of your body that are prone to stress.

What should you look out for in the Right Chair to Comfortably Sit at your Desk?

Simply put, the more hours you spend sitting, the more features your office chair should possess.

A good ergonomic chair should support your body allowing you to sit comfortably for long periods of time; move freely around your desk; accommodate all those who intend to use it; and be suited to your worked station in terms of height.

  • Adjustable Seat Depth – Allows you to slide the seat either backwards or forwards to suit your leg length. Ensure that your back is rested against the back support. In doing so you will reduce any strain directed at your legs & back and avoid the temptation of leaning forward.
  • Adjustable Height – The ability to adjust the height of your chair ensures that you avoid limited blood circulation and reduces the pressure on the area behind the knee. Ensure that your feet are flat against the floor, or indeed a foot rest, and positioned at a 90 degree angle.
  • Lumbar Support – Your chair should ensure that your seating position is supportive of the natural curvature of the spine but not so much that it creates pressure points in your back. The ability to move and sit correctly allows oxygen to move to your muscles and increase blood flow to the brain thus improving focus on your work.

A Few of our Favourite Office Chairs to sit in

 Ergo Simplicity Chair Mirage Mesh Chair trident mesh chair

Trident Mesh Chair

This contemporary executive office chair offers a proportioned posture curved leather effect upholstered seat for optimum comfort. In addition integrated lumbar support ensures that a good posture is maintained.

Ergo Simplicity Chair

This orthopaedic mesh chair has been loaded with features to ensure complete comfort and support. Suitable for users up to 18 stone it comes complete with height adjustable arms, tilting headrest and an adjustable ratchet back with lumbar support.

Mirage Mesh Chair

This distinctive design with breathable mesh covering provides a contoured sear and back for addition support. Available with or without a headrest the Mirage chair features lumbar support and adjustable arm rests.

More Help from the Team

If you’re looking for ergonomic furniture to improve the efficiency and productivity of your employees then our experts can help you find exactly what you need.

Give us a call on 0800 092 1985 for more information and advice on avoiding back pain whilst sitting and working at your desk.  

Posted by Paul Randall
24th January 2017