15 Tips to Prevent Musculoskeletal Disorders

 15 Tips to Prevent Musculoskeletal Disorders

Low back pain, tendinitis in the shoulders, carpal tunnel syndrome, elbow disease, neck pain, eye damage, general fatigue, stress ... Work can be the cause of many suffering, whether physical or psychological.


Focus on the silent epidemic called MSDs (musculoskeletal disorders) that account for 87% of occupational diseases [1].


I'm constantly sitting

Office work, drivers and merchants you spend nearly 10 hours a day sitting.

This pose affects your entire body with lower back pain, weakness in the shoulders forward, stiffness of many muscles, and the development of imbalances.


Tip #1: Move every hour! Change positions regularly. Do some movements or stretching exercises to mobilize your entire body. The more you move regularly throughout the day, the more likely you are to maintain a healthy back and body.


Tip #2: Sit properly! Your back is straight, sit well in the back on the chair so as not to sag. Resting your lower back on the backrest, lower your shoulders and bend your abdomen, retracting your rib cage. Difficult ? Consider getting a sticky reminder and imagine an imaginary wire pulling the top of your skull to the ceiling.


Tip #3: The seat is adjustable. Comfortably supports the lower back, with armrests at elbow height and the seat should be below the knees when standing facing the seat. If you are in the office, consider equipping yourself with a footrest with an inclined plane to reduce pressure on the legs and spine. It also improves blood circulation and arches the back.


I'm working on the screen

Working in front of a screen causes eyestrain, and pain in the wrist, neck or shoulders, which can turn into tendinitis and tendinopathy. It is necessary to adapt your work environment and relocation.


Tip #1: Take your eyes off the screen. Look anywhere in the room to reduce the risk of dry eyes and eye strain. Repeat this habit at least every hour.


Tip #2: Sit comfortably. The back is straight, the neck is aligned and the arms are relaxed. Resting your wrists on the desk. Consider having a wireless mouse for great mobility and adjust its sensitivity to avoid big gestures. Your keyboard is below elbow level to prevent trapezius spasms and shoulder inflammation.


Tip #3: Choose a good quality, well-placed monitor. In the room first, to take advantage of good contrast and avoid reflections. It should be facing you, in line with your gaze between 50 to 70 cm without having to raise your eyes or head to avoid neck pain and muscle tension. You can also work with work glasses or blue light. Feel free to install blue light filter on your computer to rest your eyes.


I'm awake most of the time

This position is normal in humans, but working while standing all the time can cause foot pain, varicose veins, general muscle fatigue, lower back pain, a stiff neck, and stiff shoulders.


Tip #1: Be mobile. Above all, don't stay still! Remember to make small movements regularly. This can be in the form of a simple walk, a few heels or buttocks, circular motions of the hips, knee raises or even ankle extensions to stand on your tiptoes. All these small movements will promote blood circulation and good posture.


Tip #2: Think about your posture. Reinforce small movements and avoid standing still or resting your body weight on one leg. The ideal is to lay both feet flat on the floor and make sure to "grow", as if a wire is pulling the head toward the ceiling, pulling the lowered shoulders and shoulder blades slightly back. Then the back remains in a natural curvature.


Tip #3: Take care of your legs. In addition to choosing good shoes for shock absorption and good posture, in the evening take a cool shower from the tips of your toes to your hips. If possible, lie on the floor with the legs perpendicular to the wall for 5 to 10 minutes if necessary, ending with feet flexed. Finally, once lying down, elevate your legs 10 to 12 cm with pillows to promote drainage and blood circulation.


I do maintenance

These tasks put stress on your spine, knees, and all of your joints. The risks are manifold and increase over time. The nature of the loads and the type of movement performed (torsion, displacement, lifting) contribute to the gradual aging of the articular bone structures (back pain, problems in the lower extremities, or in the extremities (impingement of the fingers, etc.).


Tip #1: Warm up. Like athletes, whether for the purpose of injury prevention or efficiency, a warm-up is an essential step. It is important to prepare your body for the effort because you will be subjecting me to more or less intense exertion. However, there is no need to do rounds, simple movements of the whole body in a circle are more than enough. Need an example, feel free to find it in the work program!


Tip 2: Legs and Cover. When lifting and carrying something heavy, use your legs and gain maximum strength. Remember to bring the load closer to your body and keep your spine in a neutral position. Avoid any twisting of your spine and above all, feel free to ask for help or use tools as much as possible (hand truck, cart, lift table). As a reminder, it is recommended that an accidental pregnancy not exceed 30 kg for men and 15 kg for women before the age of 45.


Tip #3: Diversify your tasks. Try switching out the physically demanding tasks with less demanding ones. Also, remember to avoid unnecessary bending and twisting. Finally, respect the break times to give your intervertebral discs and joints time to recover.


I do a lot of repetitive gestures

Repetitive movements increase the risk of musculoskeletal diseases, in particular, pain in the neck, shoulders, upper and lower extremities. Repetitive work can also be associated with many stress-related illnesses and general fatigue.


Tip #1: Consider warming up and stretching. With the help of specific exercises related to the activity on your workstation, you can prepare your body to undergo physical limitations. Just 10 minutes of warm-up can make a difference and will prevent muscle damage and MSDs in the short and long term.


Tip 2: Be progressive. Progress and regularity will allow you to keep up with your production rate and maintain your body. Remember to warm up and have an increasing progression of muscular efforts from weakest to toughest. From time to time, slow down the rhythm of the chains of action to a rhythm compatible with the capabilities of the human being. Although this may seem counterproductive, it allows you to hold on for the long haul and eventually, produce more for less effort and potential physical concerns.


Tip 3: Respect your breaks. To allow muscle and joint recovery, you should take at least 3 breaks in 8 hours of work, over 10 minutes each. If discomfort appears, do not force it and take an early break before repeating the gesture. This limits damage from overuse of muscles and joints (the main cause of tendinitis).


Anti-MS physical activity program

Move and pay attention to your body and its reactions! This is the secret to fighting MSDs.

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