Get Up!

I spend too much time sitting down: at the office during the day, at home in the evening and in the car when commuting. Sometimes I sit in a train or a plane as well. I am not alone: according to studies, around 50% of people spend at least six hours sitting every day, even though too much sitting is hazardous to our health. We can all decide how much time we spent sitting in the evening, but we cannot really be more physically active at the office. Or can we?

The nature of your work determines whether you can work anywhere besides Working_ergonomics_310x230.pngat a desk. You should pay attention to adjusting your chair and desk if you use a desktop computer and your office has no wireless connection for laptops. Occupational healthcare professionals will help you with ergonomics. The best way to avoid developing problems from too much sitting is to change your position at sufficiently short intervals. In addition, you can always stand up, walk around a little and stretch—no need for fancy equipment or a personal trainer. That said, exercise balls and treadmills are no longer a completely unfamiliar sight beside desks in offices.

Most of us in knowledge-intensive professions no longer need to sit at our desks for the entire working day. Instead, we can work from various locations. Coming up with new ideas may be easier if you take a walk around the block, alone or with a colleague. Brainstorming meetings can be held standing up, even with larger groups. Some say that meetings would be shorter and more effective if chairs were removed from the room. Our spines would benefit as well. We can always take calls while lying on the couch in the break room and catch up with a colleague leaning against the photocopier. A laptop can be used in an easy chair, with your feet up on a footrest.

The need for mobility should be considered in the design of a work environment. When the nature of the work allows for changes of location and the tools support mobility, we can do much to reduce the risk of lower back and neck trouble through our own actions.

Office design and furniture professionals can help with issues related to well-being at work. A good work environment is not only functional, comfortable and aesthetically pleasing, but also safe and healthy. Good design makes it easy to support good ergonomics and physical well-being, and it also positively affects emotional well-being.

Technopolis will be happy to help you with designing a well-functioning work environment.

Satu Hurme-Tikkanen
Group Service Manager
Workplace Design and Services