Working from home? Then watch your back! Here's how to keep your back healthy


If your quarantine desk setup is anywhere near as bad as that of George Clooney's wax figure, brought home by the Madame Tussauds museum in Berlin, then you'll want to pay attention to what you're doing to your back. — Britta Pedersen/dpa

Sitting in an office for hours on end is bad enough, but if you're working from home during the coronavirus crisis, you don't even have your trusty office chair and desk.

You may be making do with the kitchen table, living room couch or even your bed, which are far from ideal work areas.

To help keep your back healthy while you're roughing it, you should regularly change your sitting posture and also your work area, advises the Campaign for Healthier Backs (AGR), a German association that promotes and disseminates research on preventing backache.

Changes of position can work wonders by limbering up muscles and joints, the experts say.

For further variety, you could use a bistro table scavenged from your garden or basement party room, and work standing up some of the time. Working while standing is simpler still if you've got a high working surface or kitchen worktop.

If these things are unavailable, you could, for example, make all of your phone calls either standing up or while walking around. This will relieve strain on your back and give you a bit of exercise.

The AGR also advises employees working remotely to make sure that their work area is sufficiently illuminated. Otherwise you won't only get eyestrain, but possibly back strain as well - from having to constantly lean forward to see more clearly. – dpa

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