top of page
  • Rhona Jamieson

New Year, Better Ergonomics

A turquoise office chair next to a dark wood desk

With the new year started, now is the perfect time to start good habits and make sure your workplace is set up properly, whether it’s at home or in the office.

We’re not just talking about how it looks, although design is important, but in order for you to be at your most productive, your workspace needs to work ergonomically too.

Ergonomics is the study of people in their working environment and is about adapting that workspace to an individual to help prevent discomfort and injuries.

So here’s our guide to getting everything set up just right so you can sit comfortably and be more productive.

What desk should I use?

This is probably your biggest piece of furniture and for most people, the bit that’s not adjustable.

A sit-stand desk is great if you’ve got one as it helps you to vary your posture throughout the day. See why they are worth the investment by reading our blog from our Ergonomics expert Lee Jones.

However, if you don’t have a height-adjustable desk, then a solid, stable surface with room for your legs underneath and your screen on top is a great place to start.

How do I set up my chair?

If you’re spending money anywhere, then a decent chair is the area of your workplace set-up to concentrate on. After all, you could be spending a third of your day or more in this chair.

We have many different options in the Wellworking store but if you’re going to be sitting in it all day, make sure there are lots of adjustments available so you can fit it to your body type.

Fundamentally, you should be able to sit at your desk so that your arms form a right-angle when you rest them on your keyboard and your spine is supported against the backrest of your chair.

It’s useful if your chair has a swivel and a backwards tilt mechanism so it moves with you as you move so you’re not stuck in the same position for long periods.

Whether to have arms or not is a personal choice. They do help support the forearms but others find they can prevent you pulling the chair close to the desk.

Do I need a footrest under my desk?

When sitting with your arms at right angles and your legs under your desk, your feet should be able to rest on the floor with your hips slightly higher than your knees.

If your feet are dangling, then you may need to invest in a footrest. While a cardboard box might do the trick, we have a selection of footrests that are designed to support the legs at different heights.

Where should I position my screen?

Whatever type of computer you use, your screen or screens should be directly in front of you and the top of the screen should be level with your eyebrows when sitting at the right height for your keyboard.

If using a stand-alone monitor, consider getting a monitor arm so you can easily adjust the height and angle of the screen.

Sitting hunched over a laptop for long periods is not advised so it’s always better to use a laptop stand to raise your laptop screen to the correct height.

Do I need other accessories for the perfect work setup?

There are a number of other accessories that you can buy to help prevent strains while you work.

Most importantly, if you are using a laptop for long periods and especially if it is on a laptop stand, you will need a separate keyboard and mouse.

These should be placed directly in front of you and as close together as possible so you’re not overreaching.

There are a number of different options available including roller mice or vertical mice depending on what needs you have. These are designed to help prevent Repetitive Strain Injuries.

How do I get my ergonomics right?

By making sure your desk, chair and screen are at the right height and by using appropriate accessories like a footrest, specialist mouse and keyboard, this should give you a basic set-up that will help improve how you work and also prevent discomfort.

If you’d like more detailed help then you can book a virtual assessment with one of our ergonomics experts who be able to advise on a more tailored setup for you.

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page