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Four simple tips to improve posture at work and reduce neck and shoulder tension.

1. Do not sit at your desk for more than 30 minutes at a time. Stand up and take a 2 min break every 20 min.

When you have been sitting for longer than an hour, your posture begins to decline. Your neck and shoulders tighten and your hips become stiff.

Most people begin to slouch and stiffen up after about 45 min.

If you stand up and move every 20 – 30 min then you are moving before you become stiff.

Prolonged sitting not only causes your muscles to become tight and stiff. It also lowers your metabolic rate and decreases the circulation to your legs and vital organs. This can lead to cardiovascular disease, higher cholesterol levels, obesity and diabetes, as well as a sore bottom.


Move your glass or drink bottle just out of reach. That way you need to stand up to drink. And guess what. You have moved. You have straightened your back and shoulders and moved your legs and hips.

2. Rest your elbows on your desk or chair.

By resting your elbows on the armrests on your chair, or resting your forearms on your desk, you are taking the weight off your shoulders. You are no longer using your shoulder muscles to support your arms, allowing your shoulders to relax while you work. This will reduce neck and shoulder stiffness, headaches and RSI

3. Raise your feet off the floor.

Raising your feet slightly off the floor tilts your pelvis backwards into your chair which will helping you to sit up straight and stops you from slouching forwards. This also prevents lower back pain. Use a footstool under your desk, or a ream of paper works well too.

4. Do not cross your legs.

This is bad for your circulation – think cramps and varicose veins.

Crossing your legs puts a strain on your hips and lower back. This is a common cause of lower back pain.

Creating Healthier Workplaces – Reducing Prolonged Sitting by VicHealth.

If you have any questions or would like help setting up your workstation, speak to a BodyActive therapist today.

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