It seems difficult to believe, but laptops have been around since the 1980’s. Thankfully laptops such as the early IBM 5144 “portable” personal computer have come a long way in a few decades. Today more people use laptops than a standard PC. This is an interesting development as laptops were never designed for permanent use. Laptops were designed to be portable, not ergonomic, hence so many people are not ergonomically correct when using their laptop. Not using your laptop correctly can cause unnecessary discomfort and can even be detrimental to your health.
There are solutions that can enable a user to use their laptop in a more ergonomically correct manner. For longer-term, static, on-desk use, there are numerous ways of improving your laptop ergonomics. Through improved awareness and more informed use of available ergonomic equipment, you can become a more efficient, more comfortable and definitely, a healthier laptop user.
Below are 3 guidelines on how to improve your laptop use:
- Use a laptop docking station with a connected screen or simply connect an external screen to your laptop. The added screen should be bigger than the laptop screen as the often small, and ever diminishing in size laptop screens strain your eyes and often force you to work in an awkward, hunched position to get a better view of your screen. Ensure that you position the external screen correctly.
- Using an ergonomic laptop stand allows you to improve the position of the laptop screen (with the top of the screen at around eye level) for more ergonomically correct use. This will ensure that you place less strain on your eyes and neck. Laptop stands can also be a very useful ergonomic tool while travelling. Click here to view the extensive range of laptop and monitor stands from Ergonomicsdirect.
- Always remember to use a separate keyboard and mouse when using your laptop for longer periods. Touchpads and laptop keypads are not conducive to long periods of use. The movement from a normal mouse is more fluent and more natural and an external keyboard will make you less cramped for space. It will enable you to have the keyboard in a better position and the screen at about an arms’ length away.
Other pointers to also consider for more ergonomic laptop use include:
- Be aware of your slouching when using a laptop. Try to correct bad posture with better screen positioning and regular breaks away from the screen. Set yourself a reminder if needed.
- Position the top of your laptop screen (or external monitor) at about eye level with your forearms supported and elbows at a 90-degree angle.
- Using an ergonomic chair makes all the difference as your sitting position can be controlled and adjusted for correctness and comfort.
- Make use of the tilt that your laptop screen offers, adjusting the angle to avoid glare. Glare can make your eyes excessively tired and force you into an incorrect posture.
Speak to us at Ergonomicsdirect for expert advice on ergonomic laptop use and laptop accessories. You can view our wide range of meticulously selected ergonomic furniture and accessories online at www.ergonomicsdirect.co.za