Most people believe that the risk of being injured at work is minimal if you are working in an office. While the risk of accidents at work is without doubt lower than that of working in occupations like fishing, construction or agricultural work, for instance, this belief is, however, somewhat misguided. Repetitive strain injuries and back problems are common; therefore it is essential that you know of the best ways to sit in your work chair.
Risks of working in an office
To begin with, there is the ever-present risk of injuries by slipping, tripping and falling. Then, of course, working on computers means there is always a risk of being injured by electrocution or fire. One of the main causes of work injuries suffered by office workers is, however, poor posture.
When you incorrectly sit in your work chair
When you slouch, lean forward for prolonged periods, or sit in your work chair with your feet dangling above the ground, you take the risk of putting excessive strain on both your back muscles and your spine.
This can ultimately lead to back and neck pain, joint, muscle, and disc problems. This is in addition to headaches, fatigue and even breathing problems or issues with your major internal organs.
Best ways to sit in your work chair
To prevent occupational illness caused by bad posture, it is best to sit in your work chair with your:
- Feet on the floor, flat
- Knees at hip level
- Back aligned properly against your chair back
- Shoulders straight
- Arms flexed, at your elbows, at angles from 75 to 90 degrees
You should obviously also avoid leaning forward too much and slouching.
Your employer will also need to help prevent you developing work-related back pain or sustaining other injuries at work by providing you with a workstation and chair that you can adjust properly. This will enable you to sit properly in your chair at work, as well as assessing and minimising other potential risks of work accidents or repetitive strain injuries.
Hurt in the office
If the unexpected happens and you do have an office accident, or if your employer does not enable you to adopt a safe posture while performing your duties, there is a possibility that you may be eligible for work injury compensation.
Find out for sure whether you have a claim. Get additional information surrounding when you can claim industrial injury compensation and how, by having a no-obligation chat with our Accident Advice Helpline advisory team.
You can get hold of the team by calling 0800 689 0500, or 0333 500 0993 from your mobile, now.
Date Published: August 1, 2016
Author: Accident Advice