Working from home during the COVID-19 pandemic? Experts from the Texas A&M Ergonomics Center offer advice for creating a comfortable and efficient workspace.
The COVID-19 pandemic has millions of Americans setting up work stations at home for the first time. Although it may be tempting to set up shop on the couch, experts at the Texas A&M Ergonomics Center (Ergo Center) recommend putting some thought into where and how you work from home.
A thoughtfully designed home workspace can prevent a slew of health issues, from headache-inducing eye strain to shoulder, neck and back pain — and it can improve your productivity. To help you set up a healthy work station at home, two ergonomists — experts in designing workspaces — give the following advice:
“No matter what, you can overcome a not-so-great setup at home if you don’t stay there very long and if you move around a lot,” said Martha Parker, ergonomist and project manager at the Ergo Center.
Wherever you work, Parker recommends getting up and moving around every 20 to 30 minutes. Her preferred rule of thumb, which comes from current best-practices research, is 20/8/2: sit at your work station for 20 minutes, stand at your work station for eight minutes, then walk around for two minutes. If you don’t have a sit-to-stand work station at home, sit for 28 minutes then get up and walk around for two.
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