Skip to content

7 Ways for Office Workers to Decrease Their Risk of Back or Neck Pain

woman stretching at deskTechnology has permanently changed the way we work. It’s created a significant increase in sedentary office work, and while we’ve adjusted and come to view it as a staple of modern life, our bodies haven’t. Here at Awaken Chiropractic Wellness, we see a wide range of neck and back pain in patients who work office jobs. Teaming up with Awaken is as much about education and prevention as it is about the physical adjustments. We want to give you the tools to assist your body in functioning optimally. So what can you do to prevent those feelings of pain as you tap away on your keyboard? Let’s have a look at seven ways you can improve, or reduce the risk of, back and neck pain.

1. Invest in a high-quality chair

Forty hours of your week is spent sitting in your office chair. That’s around two thousand hours a year where you’re either supporting your back and posture or harming it. So while a high-quality chair is a financial investment, it’s a small price to pay for improving how your body feels.

So what should you look for? Firstly, make sure your seat’s height is adjustable to allow for maximum adaptability in ensuring your screen is the height of your eye line. It’s also essential to get a chair that is stable and wide enough – this will allow for comfort in your new seating position (see next point!). Other factors, such as the seat material, armrest, and the ability to swivel, will contribute to the comfortability and relaxation that allows for less strain on your lower back.

2. Sit on the edge of your chair

Here at Awaken, we recommend a seated posture that helps maintain the curves in your spine and alleviates pressure on your back. Sit on the edge of your chair – as far forward as possible while still being stable and comfortable. Place one leg in front and one leg behind. This posture allows your spine to rest in its natural position, ensuring you’re not placing undue stress on your lower discs.
Have a look at chiropractor Dr. Blake Horner’s visual demonstration of the seating position here.

3. Get up and move regularly

The benefits of keeping your body moving are exponential, yet we often think this solely means getting our thirty minutes of exercise in a day. While exercise is an important part, any movement you can do throughout the day helps to increase the mobility of your joints and muscles.

Getting up regularly for a brief stroll around the office can help mitigate the build-up of tightness in your back and neck, something that leads to pain. A small way of assisting this movement could be by drinking your water out of a small glass, so that each time you run out, you get up to refill it. These trips throughout the day will help give your body a break from the hours at your desk.

4. Stretch

While you may have the office furniture and type of job that forces you to be seated all day, these restrictions don’t mean you can’t still work to maintain your mobility. There are numerous stretches you can perform at your desk that will help keep your joints, muscles and spine flexible, reducing the risk of back and neck pain.

Have a look at our videos on ‘Work Exercises for Better Posture‘ and ‘Median Nerve Flossing‘ for easy instructions on how you can maintain your body’s muscle and nerve functions while at work.

5. Position your monitor correctly

It sounds simple, but positioning your computer monitor to ensure it’s directly in front of you and your eye line helps prevent unnecessary strain on your neck and back. If your monitor is too low, you will inevitably stoop your neck and back to read it. If it’s too high, you’ll do the inverse – craning your neck upwards. Additionally, if your monitor is off to one side, your neck will be out of its natural position for hours.

These different positions put your neck and back out of their natural resting place. Combine this with the hours you spend at work and they can be a significant contributing factor to ailments felt by office workers.

6. Invest in a standing desk

Switching from a regular desk to a standing desk is an easy change that can significantly impact how your body feels. A major misconception with standing desks is that you’re on your feet all day. In reality, a standing desk allows you the freedom to alternate between standing and sitting throughout the day – giving your body a variety of positions and an increase in mobility.

While standing desks have documented benefits, they are not a fix-all cure. Instead, it’s best to think of it as a small way to keep your body moving – which, as we know, is a major contributing factor in feeling good for years to come.

7. Get chiropractic care

If you have persistent neck and back pain that impacts your quality of life, there’s no reason to be silent. Here at Awaken, we have helped hundreds of patients feel better in their bodies, assisting them in being free of pain as they move forward in their lives. Have a look at what some of our patients have said here.

While desk jobs are an inevitability in the modern workforce, pain isn’t. If you have any questions or want to know more about how to feel healthier in your daily life, give our friendly staff a call on 9364 5566 or book an initial consultation with one of our specialists.

Add Your Comment (Get a Gravatar)

Your Name


Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *.