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Stretching at Your Computer or Desk by Bob Anderson

Do-it-yourself torture: Place subject on a chair, to compress vertebrae, contract muscles, and cut blood circulation. Immobilize for hours. Eliminate diverse motions required by old office machines (hitting the carriage return, inserting paper, changing ribbons). Place files literally at the subject's fingertips, to decrease taking walks or squatting to fetch a folder. Substitute email keystrokes for manipulating pieces of paper. Create a monoculture of minimized motions, repeated endlessly (over 20,000 keystrokes per work period). Demand focus to heighten mental and muscle tension.

It doesn't help much to remember that we're doing this to ourselves, as I recognized two months ago when back spasms left me crawling to the bathroom. Stretching won't cure serious problems after they've occurred. But it can be a simple, powerful, preventative along with attention to ergonomics and remembering to get up and move regularly. Bob Anderson keys his program to computer-created breaks: e.g., stretching while the computer warms up, while downloading data or printing, or while the modem dials.


ISBN: 0936070196

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