Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Chin Up!

image by flareXII

After reading this  Arthritis Foundation article which looked at musculoskeletal disorders of the upper extremities (MSD - UE) and their relationship to computer posture, I am adding yet another item to my Julia Do list. I have resolved to change my position when I spend time at the computer.

My laptop has allowed me to lounge on Couch while surfing the web, catching up on e-mail, or blogging. I can now see that positions like these are really bad news for musculoskeletal health. 

The article discusses a study which evaluated postures and behaviors associated with typing on a computer keyboard. Here's the findings of the study:

After analyzing the data from 19 different postures from all 42 people, only one factor demonstrated good ability to predict who had an MSD-UE: neck flexion angle ≥20 degrees. This means that the participants who had their heads pointing downward had a higher likelihood of having some form of upper extremity problem. In fact, all participants who identified themselves as having a neck disorder kept their heads in a downward position at ≥20 degrees. Furthermore, 90 percent of those who did not have a neck disorder kept their heads positioned more upright, with a flexion angle of 20 degrees or less.

I think this means that I need to abandon my typical chin-down method of typing. What?! Sitting in a chair at a desk? Who does that anymore?

Who? Me, I guess. 

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