Working from home has become the “new normal” for many of us, with 46.6% of the UK’s employed population doing so in April 2020. Of these, 86% of these were doing so as a result of the coronavirus pandemic – and many of them are still doing so, six months later. I’m hearing from many of my patients that their employers have told them that although this was originally envisaged as a short-term situation, they are now expecting it to be a way of life for the months to come.
So… while initially it might have been OK to construct a sort of Heath-Robinson workstation at home (I’ve seen patients setting up their standing desk on an ironing board, as well as many people working from a laptop on the sofa or the dining table), we know it’s not healthy to do that for the long term.
The risks of working from home
The risks of working from a temporary setup in the longer term include increased psychological stress and physical pain and injury (especially back and neck pain, and RSI), which might have been avoided if you’d been able to stay in the office with an ergonomic workstation.
If you’re going to work from home successfully, and avoid causing yourself pain and potentially damage, then you need to understand how to set up your home workstation so that it fits you as well as possible. This means getting the right desk, the right chair, the right accessories – and it also means taking breaks to move, and looking after your body.
If you’re an employee, your employer also has a duty of care to help you with that – but whether you’re an employee, self-employed or something else, it’s up to you to make sure it happens.
How to set up your workstation for success
Most people don’t know the best way to set up their own workstation, or what potential pitfalls to look out for – and that’s why I’ve put together an online course, Setting up your home workstation for success. In the course I explain:
- the risks of being a user of display screen equipment (DSE) especially when working from home
- the legislation around display screen equipment (important for employers and employees)
- issues to look out for: stress, eye strain, noise, lighting, clutter, back pain
- how to set up your workstation so that it fits you
- where to find the best equipment (chairs, desk, computer, accessories) for you
- how best to look after your own body
- what to do if it goes wrong
The course is just £25, for which you get a combination of presentations, videos and PDFs so that you can get the most out of it, and hopefully avoid the common pitfalls of working from a home workstation! Click here to buy it now!