More of us are working from home right now, but home comforts don’t always extend to our in-house workspaces. If you don’t have a suitable WFH set up, you could damage your back and have chronic pain in your upper body.
As someone who has dealt with pain due to an unsuitable workspace, I spent a lot of time researching how to create a tailored home office. It’s the comfiest and healthiest set-up I’ve worked with to date, so here are some tips I picked up in the process
1. Get your desk and chair measurements. Yes, that’s a thing.
Your desk is the foundation of your workspace. Too high or too low, and you’ll feel it in your neck and back. You need to figure out which measurements you need for your desk and the type of chair that will match it too.
This sounds extra, but it’s your health at stake! In my experience, I’ve had both an ill-fitting desk and chair, which meant I was getting it from all sides, so finding a good chair matters too.
Standard tables – whether they’re study desks or dining tables – usually come in at a height of 75-80cm. For my 5ft3 self, that’s 20cm too high.
I knew because I could feel the strain on my shoulders when I used my laptop, but a desk calculator will give you the most accurate reading, so I found a few online and began looking for desks at that height only to find…nothing. There was no desk at the correct height for me.
The solution? A DIY-ish approach.
You don’t have to get a desk that is at your optimal height if you’re on the smaller side. Footrests can prop you up and allow your feet to lay flat. Some people find footrests are sufficient, especially if they’re content with their existing table or don’t want a custom fit.
I did, so I went to IKEA with my build-a-table mission and found a tabletop plus some extendable legs which came at my height and put together my table.
3. Find a comfy seat at the table
Now this was tough. I scoured pages upon pages, reviews upon reviews, looking for the perfect chair. The ergonomic ones did not have the height or look I desired, until I came across the Secretlabs Throne chair, which is hands-down the best office chair I’ve ever used.
Technically it’s a ‘gaming’ chair that’s used in offices. FYI, there are plenty of decent gaming chairs out there. I like it because it’s made with my height in mind. They have different chairs for people of different statures and this matters because the seat depth and chair width also factor into your overall comfort and back health.
I recommend putting it together with 2 people if possible. With 1 person it’s doable (you can find YouTube demos) but takes longer.
If you already like the chair you have and aren’t on the market for a new one, you can also make modifications like using office chair cushions for better support and/or elevation.
4. Make your screentime work
Ideally, your screen should be eye level. If you have a separate monitor, you can hook it up to your laptop. Otherwise, if you’re working with just your laptop, I advise getting a separate keyboard and mouse and propping up your laptop up with a laptop holder, or a stack of boxes/books.
And voila! You’re on your way to a decent setup that’s good for your health and your productivity too.
What’s your WFH setup?
SecretLabs Chairs – if anybody wants a promo code for £20 off, let me know (I have 1 left)