More than 40 per cent of Australians working from home do not have a suitable workstation or the correct equipment, a new study has found.
The research from the Australian Chiropractors Association (ACA) has prompted a health warning, urging workers to correct their poorly set up home workspaces to avoid any physical injuries.
It comes as chiropractors across Australia reported a huge spike in people presenting with work-related injuries.
ACA president David Cahill said the real issue was that people didn’t understand the importance of a good work set-up.
“With more Australians working from home than ever before, those using computers at home who are not correctly set up in an ergonomic workspace, may be risking their spinal health and overall wellbeing,” the chiropractor said.
Of the 1000 adult respondents nationally, 33 per cent worked from their dining table, 16 per cent from their bed and 15 per cent from their sofa.
“While a by-product of the pandemic has seen working from home become normalised, the results of our recent surveys show alarming statistics that many Australians are yet to adjust to this ‘new normal’ and may be risking their health because they haven’t adopted safe work habits at home,” Cahill said.
ACA members reported an increase in existing patients with work-related spinal issues, with 78 per cent seeing an increase in new patients suffering the ill effects of working from home.
“Not everyone has a dedicated study which they can set up properly, so they might to adapt their dining table or whatever space they have,” Cahill said.
He said a properly set up office chair was the first essential along with having the screen at eye level with your arms able to rest on the table.
To help, ACA has launched a free app called Straighten Up that offers ergonomic tips, easy exercises and reminders to get moving.