- Take brief breaks (for a few seconds) periodically throughout your day while you are pausing at the computer, plus a short stretch break every 20-30 minutes. Incorporate these breaks into the natural breaks in your work day, such as while you are waiting for your computer to start, printing a document or downloading a file. If you have discomfort, be sure to check with your health practitioner on the appropriateness of all stretches.
- Get up and walk around for 5 minutes every hour on the hour when you are not taking your regular breaks or your lunch break.
- Avoid cradling your phone between your neck and shoulder.
- Keep frequently used items within an easy reach.
- Wear wrist braces only while not doing fine motor tasks (i.e., typing).
- Maintain proper posture, paying careful attention to positioning of head, neck/spine, arms/wrists, hips/thighs and feet.
- Alternate between different postures on a regular basis.
- When keyboarding, use minimal force while striking the keys.
- Use a light touch while using your mouse, avoid holding your fingers raised above the mouse, and keep it as close to your mid-line as possible.
- Keep a neutral position, where forearms, wrists and hands are in a straight line.
- Avoid awkward reaching for work tools such as telephone, mouse and reference materials.
- Avoid resting elbows, forearms or wrists on hard surfaces or sharp edges.
- Take frequent mini-breaks throughout the day to give muscles and joints a chance to rest and recover.
- Alternate between work activities — use different muscle groups to avoid overuse of any particular muscle.
- Give eyes a break by closing them momentarily, gazing at a distant object and blinking frequently.
- Maintain appropriate light levels for specific tasks. More illumination may be needed to read a document than to view a computer screen.
- Reduce or eliminate glare by using window shades, diffusers on overhead lighting, and anti-glare filters for computers when necessary.
- Avoid long periods of repetitive activity. For example, alternate computer work with other tasks like phone calls, filing, copying and meetings.
- Vary tasks to make the day more interesting. For example, deliver a message in person instead of phoning.
- Organize your workload to help even out busy and slow times and to avoid feeling "swamped."
- Reduce stress by planning ahead and setting realistic expectations for what you can accomplish during the work day.
- Learn the keyboard commands. This will save time, and will avoid overuse of the mouse.