Office Ergonomics

I don’t think I really realized how important ergonomics are until these past couple of weeks. Unfortunately, the setup at work is less than ideal, and my neck and shoulders have been in a lot of pain this week.

The Mouse

Actually, I’ve had this problem before. At a previous job, the mouse that I got was fairly small and so small that I could only wrap three fingers around it (there was absolutely no room to even put your other fingers on it). Currently, I’m having a similar problem where the mouse is narrow and square, so there is nowhere to put my smallest two fingers. Using the mouse for too long causes my hand to cramp.

The Keyboard

At a previous job, I also had a short keyboard (no number pad), but I use the number pad often enough right now that it might not be worth it. My setup also lacked a wrist rest, which I need.

While I don’t need to do it now, I used to use a mac keyboard, so I would have to put a couple of sticky pads underneath in order to level it.

The Chair

So, the chair I had been using is height adjustable and that’s it. It also provided very little support, having a very small back, and had no armrests. During my ergonomics session today, my chair was swapped with another one we happened to have in the office, but the armrests are so far apart from each other that I can’t even rest my elbows on them while typing. Even to use the mouse, I have to lean over to use it. So, I’ve requested that they either swap the armrests or get me a new chair.

The Good Stuff

On the up side, I have dual monitors that are the adjustable tilt and height type, so no problems with those. Since they are the same model, they align up with each other quite well. The contractor checked that the top of the screen is at eye level like it’s supposed to be.

The Waiting Game

Now that I’ve got an ergonomics report, I just need to wait for things to happen. I got my wrist rest (yay!) today, but the rest is still coming. Hopefully it happens soon, otherwise, I’ll need to be paying for massage therapy.

Author: Cynthia

Technologist, Librarian, Metadata and Technical Services expert, Educator, Mentor, Web Developer, UXer, Accessibility Advocate, Documentarian

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