Singapore is slowly flattening the curve in COVID-19 cases, but the pandemic is far from over. And even if vaccines are being developed at record speeds, it’ll take some more testing to make sure they’re safe for public consumption. That means that high schools for international students and local ones are going to continue with their online classes for months to come.
Apart from adjusting to a new way of learning, students also need to deal with possible issues like pain in different parts of the body like the arms, back, and neck when going through their online classes. Having a steady position like sitting on a desk all day can lead to a lack of blood circulation to the muscles and bones. And combined with repetitive movements like typing, some nerves may get pinched and damaged along the way.
Learning doesn’t have to be painful. Improve your child’s online class experience with these ergonomic essentials.
If your kid sits on a kitchen chair when using their computer, they’re sure to feel the fatigue and pain in their back eventually. That is because such chairs aren’t made for prolonged use. They don’t have adjustable heights and angles. Everyone’s body is different. As such, the equipment you use should be customized according to yours. It doesn’t have to be an expensive chair, as long as it has a recliner, height adjustment capabilities, and a curve that supports the spine.
The Mayo Clinic recommends that you adjust the chair to a height that the knees are level with the hips and the hands are at least at elbow level on the desk. If the height causes your kid’s feet to hang from the chair, give them a footrest to step on. If this isn’t available, a stack of old books or a stool is available.
The desk also affects how one’s legs are positioned for hours on end. Make sure your kid’s table has enough clearance for their thighs, knees, and feet to move around freely. If the desk has a sharp edge, cover it up with a mouse pad or desk mat to protect your child’s wrists.
The Computer Peripherals
Traditional keyboard and mouse designs often put the hands in unnatural positions. Repetitively moving one’s fingers and wrists using this gear may lead to complications like carpal tunnel syndrome. It happens when the median nerve in one’s wrist gets pinched either because of inflammation or repetitive motion. Other conditions related to prolonged computer use include tendinitis and tennis elbow. Get your kid ergonomic peripherals to minimize these issues.
For the keyboard, look for one with a tented and slanted format, as it follows the natural resting position of one’s hands. Logitech’s MK550 and Microsoft’s Sculpt keyboards are great examples of this. As for the mouse, a vertical wireless mouse will do wonders, as it follows the hand’s natural “handshake” position.
The only things your child should think about during their online classes are their tasks and not the aches in their back, neck, or wrists. These suggestions help create a more comfortable study station for your kid. Some items may cost a lot of money, but they’re worth getting if you want your child to have a pleasant and healthy learning experience during this new normal.