We’ve all had to put in a few hours of work from bed before when we’re sick, and it’s never a pleasant experience. According to the Wall Street Journal, long hours of working from a bed will ruin your posture, but you can do a few things to make it less painful.
Image: Joselito Tagarao.
The Wall Street Journal cites all types of problems with working from bed. First and foremost, keeping a computer or smartphone screen on can disrupt your sleep cycle. Worse, you’re likely to practice horrible ergonomic posture while you’re working. You hold your body in strange positions, or prop your body with your elbow. This means you have no lumbar support and you neck is bent too sharply, which causes pain. Simply put, it’s a bad idea. That said, sometimes you don’t have a choice. The Wall Street Journal has a few suggestions for making working from your bed more comfortable:
Don Chaffin, director emeritus of the University of Michigan’s centre for Ergonomics, recommends using a detachable keyboard and setting it on a lap desk or pillow and supporting elbows and arms so the wrists are straight when extended. Any screen or monitor should sit at or just below eye level, perhaps on a rolling table or extendible arm, so the user doesn’t have to flex the neck more than 15 degrees. A lumbar pillow for the back and more pillows propped under the legs can ease muscle strain, Dr Chaffin says. People should get up and move around every hour or so.
We all know that the bed’s no replacement for a good desk and chair, but if you’re stuck logging in a few hours of work when you’re home sick you might not have another option. At the very least, make sure you’re doing as much ergonomically for yourself as you can.
More Work Goes ‘Undercover’ [Wall Street Journal]