If your work requires you to sit for extended periods of time, you must do it safely. Sitting for long periods of time is common to a wide range of professions and occupations in Australia. A lack of physical activity in the workspace can cause a range of health problems including cardio-vascular disease, diabetes, mental health issues and musculoskeletal disorders that can lead to headaches and chronic neck, shoulder and back pain.
Even for those who exercise daily, if they sit for over 7 hours per day and for longer than 30 minutes without a break, this can cause spinal health problems.
Any form of computer work in an office or at home, general office duties and administration, transportation and highly mechanised trades.
For those who consistently sit with poor posture or don’t use an ergonomically designed chair or workstation, this can cause poor spinal health that can lead to chronic neck and back pain. Low back pain is the leading cause of disability globally with work-related musculoskeletal disorders the leading work health and safety (WHS) problem in Australia.
With prevention as the best protection against all workspace injuries, for work involving prolonged periods of sitting while driving or using a computer anywhere, maintaining good posture is imperative to spinal health.
If you use a computer at home or in an office, the following simple steps can help maintain good posture to help minimise musculoskeletal disorders that can lead to chronic pain.
In Australia, employers have a responsibility to keep workers safe from the risks of prolonged sitting. To help prevent health risks from prolonged sitting, employers should ensure ergonomic design and seating, and incorporate ‘sit-stand’ workstations where possible, allowing for workers to vary their posture and movements alternating between sitting, standing and walking at regular intervals.