The big game is upon us; the day that everyone in Human Solution offices, or maybe just a couple of us, have been looking forward to. I can’t wait until Sunday so I can gorge myself on hot wings, chips and dip, have a few cold beverages and sit on the couch all day, slowly sinking further in and turning myself into a human couch cushion. Sounds great, doesn’t it?
Well, that was last year and I felt the after effects pretty hard. I hated Monday more than Garfield the Cat. This year, I am going to take an ergonomic approach during my Superbowl watching party. I’m not going to take it sitting down! We all know the dangers of sitting for hours on end. That doesn’t just apply during the work week. Keep ergonomics in mind, even in the living room, your local watering hole or wherever you prefer to watch the game. Here are a few scenarios in which I still have ergonomics on my mind.
Get there early. Grab a good spot. (AKA Monitor Arm)
We’ve educated you on correct computer monitor placement, but you don’t just stare at one screen in your life, you stare a lots of screens. The TV is just another screen that shouldn’t have your neck craning either. This is especially important if you aren’t in the comforts of your own home. I’ve been in plenty of public places to watch sports, only to get a terrible view of the game and leave with a neck-ache by the end of the night. Get to your destination early, scope out a good seat that doesn’t have you straining.
Find a TV Tray. They're not just a kitschy decoration. (AKA Keyboard Tray)
- Don't have a Neutral Zone Infraction! Keep your refreshments close within reach. A TV tray can ensure you aren't reaching beyond your neutral zone.
Just like your typing and mousing surface, your eating surface should be at the correct height and be in reach as well. Don’t strain your back and shoulders, uncomfortably hunching and scrunching over your coffee table or reaching too high on a bar to shovel the snacks down your throat. Get yourself a TV tray! This will let you sit there right on the couch and have your food and drink right within your neutral reach zone.
Prop your feet up! (AKA Footrest)
Ever found yourself propping your feet up on the coffee table (or your sleeping dog)? Well, that is ergonomic. A footrest is an ergonomic accessory that is great for blood flow. It can also help shorter people use an ergonomic chair that might not otherwise allow them to reach the floor. Many footrests have a rocking motion that encourages movement in the feet. Feel free to move your feet around as you are resting them on the dog sleeping at your feet. He/she will appreciate the massage.
- Propping your feet up does more than help you relax, it promotes positive blood flow. Why do you think you feel so relaxed anyway?
Need some more nachos? How about a refill? Get it yourself! (AKA Standing Desk/Treadmill Desk)
Seriously, your legs will thank you. Get up and move around. I know the commercials are hilarious and you don’t want to be the only one at the office not able to laugh Monday morning, but if you are going to continue stuffing yourself with seven-layer dip and salsa, you might as well walk over to get it yourself. This will keep your metabolism from slowing down to a screeching halt. When you get back to the couch, just rewind the DVR and watch the commercials you missed. If your friends/family moan and groan about it, tell them you were keeping ergonomics in mind and trying to be healthier and then chastise them for being lazy bums.
Just be a fan!
Fan comes from the word "fanatic," meaning someone filled with or expressing excessive zeal. Have some enthusiasm and be full of zeal! Get excited and just have a good time. If you are a fan of the Denver Broncos or Seattle Seahawks, you probably don’t need me to tell you that. Perhaps you have a few jellybeans on the line for the Superbowl? Either way, jumping up out of your seat and flailing your arms around in the air like you just don’t’ care is good for you. Keep the blood flowing, but watch out for the ceiling fan and don’t knock anything over.
Make this year's Superbowl the Superbowl of Ergonomics. Take care of yourself and don't over-do it. Be aware of your posture, sit comfortably and move around some. Game-watching fatigue is a real thing. Following these simple suggestions will keep you fresh throughout the game (and halftime, if that's your thing).
Cheer on over to TheHumanSolution.com for everything ergonomics, no matter where you are.