School at home may be a pain. Setting ergonomic student workstations

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Your school settings should consider ergonomics. The good news is that it is not difficult to make simple changes part of the back-to-school plan.

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Returning to campus in 2020 looks so different. Whether you go to remote areas or go in person, this is a way to save time and money to prepare students for class

When the pandemic closed schools everywhere, my 19-year-old daughter was one of the approximately 77 million students in the United States and suddenly entered the new world of online classrooms. When she finished her first grade at home, she went from walking a few miles on the university campus every day to spending hours sitting on a hardwood bench on a small table in our room.

The pain started for several weeks.

She is a daily runner and high school cross-country champion, and she complained of injuries to her waist while walking, laughing, or falling asleep while illusion. Appointment with a virtual doctor, followed by virtual and face-to-face physical therapy, all showed a herniated disc-most likely caused by her new homeschool workstation. 

As schools argue about resuming online learning, the lack of Internet access for many Americans is a big problem.

"Not surprising at all,"

, Physical therapist,

, And the USC clinical assistant professor told me over the phone. He said: "Absolute low back pain and neck pain are the two most common persistent postural injuries caused by non-ergonomic sitting." 

According to a survey conducted by Facebook earlier this year,

, 92% of chiropractors say that since the pandemic began, patients have reported more neck, back or other musculoskeletal problems. Children are no exception. Vagy said that if anything, students may be at greater risk because they often do their homework from the bed or on the floor, and indulge in the screen time and time again for hours. 

Vagy explained: "The spine is bent over and the shoulders are bent. This is the classic posture of sitting junior high and teenage years." He said: "This is where parents need to intervene and use one of the many accessible solutions to protect The overall health of the child." 

Dr. Vagy said that the solution is simple. Just set a timer to let the child stand up and walk around every 30 minutes, or have a telemedicine visit with a physical therapist who can analyze the student’s work-at-home settings and propose Real-time recommendations. He added: "Usually, this is a single-session solution, and the repair may not cost anything." 

The good news is that making simple ergonomic changes as part of a back-to-school plan is not difficult, and as Vagy said, it doesn’t have to be too expensive. This is how we created a painless workstation for my daughter and how to create it for your child: 

Some tips for setting up a more comfortable workstation

Let's start with the screen, because it affects all other elements. Is it a laptop? desktop? tablet? Their rules are similar, but the tools used to implement the rules are different.

"The top of the display should be at eye level," he said

, Is a physical therapist and ergonomics expert, he developed a product for returning to school

One Call, a healthcare network management company. 

Soundance aluminum alloy laptop stand laptop riser

In the past year, I have used many things, from a pile of books to a shoe box, which can be used to elevate my laptop, but now I have risen to 33 dollars

The aluminum laptop stand I found on Amazon. Both my husband and daughter use these now, although my daughter also likes it

($40) The desk tray is on her lap so that she is not sitting at the desk. Other parents I’ve spoken to in this story also recommend a flexible arm, which can be adjusted with the child’s growth or movement, just like a

The $70 version. There are also many devices that can accommodate monitors and tablet computers.

Experts also recommend buying an external keyboard and mouse, especially when the children are working on a laptop or tablet. You can buy a basic helmet for about $20 to avoid injuries to your wrists, hands and neck. Despres said: “Without ergonomic fixes, laptops can be the worst thing to work for a sustained period of time. They are mobile and can be easily moved from one place to another instead of sitting at once. In a few hours." 

Despres said that these initial simple repair methods may work wonders, especially for neck pain and headaches, but please read on to learn more about the repair methods for lower back pain. 

When setting up workstations for students at home, we need to consider long-term use.

When you place the monitor at the level of the line of sight, you are likely to see the child's entire posture change, which is a good thing. The typical casual posture of a child/teenager-often referred to as a "tortoise" (bending over and leaning on the forearm)-is dangerous. 

Recommended by my daughter's physical therapist

It can better illustrate your good posture while working on the computer. Hedge is one of the most famous ergonomics researchers in the world. He proved that when you lift the screen, you tend to stop leaning forward. He said this is a better place to let blood flow in the legs and relieve pressure on the forearms. 

But we are not done yet.

You may have a desk or table, and may improvise to modify many required patches. But the chair is very important. Despres said: "If the budget is limited and you can only buy a table or a chair, then buy a chair." "And buy a product that you can adjust." Despres said that parents should look for a chair where you can adjust Height, seat back, seat, angle and armrest.

Vagy goes further, saying that a kneeling chair or an ergonomic desk/chair combination (such as the Edge Desk ($400)) can also do wonders. "The kneeling desk does require more energy," Vagy explained. "You have to use your abdominal muscles and core. In any case, you should still stand up every 30 minutes, change your posture, maybe do some stretching exercises, and then walk around." He added. He also recommends setting the desk to a height suitable for the child and adjusting it as the child grows. 

The trend in the workplace is toward a desk that allows you to sit and stand. This is also a good idea for children. "It's not good to sit all day. Anything static is not good," Despres said. "So if you can get a sit/stand combination desk, that would be great." 

There are many options



Under $300. 

There are also ergonomic desk and chair combinations specifically for children, but the only one I can still find is

The height-adjustable desks and chairs are suitable for children aged 3-10 (US$127). 

A footrest is also a good idea, so that when your child maintains the perfect, comfortable typing posture of leaning backwards all day, they can also make their feet stand and relieve pressure on the lower back. Then, try not to keep them in any posture all day long. 

However, one of the biggest disadvantages of virtual classrooms is sports. Therefore, even if you have now met all the ergonomic requirements, don’t forget Vagy’s ultimate recommendation, which is to let your child move every 30 minutes. 

You can set a timer, make rules, turn it into a game, or create routines that encourage getting up and moving around frequently. No matter what you do, make sure to take a break as part of your ergonomics teaching plan. A sitting/standing desk can help you incorporate exercise into school work, but it is also possible to get up and go out or use a jack. If you do parenting points with them. 

As we all know, the coronavirus pandemic has changed people's lives, including the way students learn.

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