The Ergonomic Journey - ErgoFit Consulting's Blog

shutterstock 342065102

The family car, America's new home-office

While many Americans have been working from the cars for a great deal of time, this is new for many workers with the onset of Covid-19 and the ever-changing work environment. 

Those that have been working from vehicles for some time include, police officers with their center console-mounted computers, parking enforcement officers who drive from place to place then use handheld computers to enter the information needed, and other professionals who also use the car or another vehicle as their ‘office’ such as construction workers who go from place to place throughout the day. The question is, how do we help these workers do so in an ergonomic way to help prevent discomfort or injury? 

 


Deborah

Written March 2022

by Kristen Mandich and Deborah Read MOTR/L

ErgoFit Consulting, Inc.

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  

Just like in an office setting our seating is the basis of a good ergonomic set-up along with the ability to get up and move about. These are the basics of a good work environment. If you are working in the front seat and have the seatback set in a more upright position to allow for full back support, you may need to adjust your seatback while driving as many people drive with a slightly reclined position. If you are sitting in the backseat, it is important to support your lumbar region, a small pillow or lumbar support may be needed.

Next, we need to look at the work surface. There are many new devices that provide a place for your computer/devices. Items such as small desks that attach to your steering wheel or lap desks improve postures and support while computing. However, we still need to be careful that we are not looking down with neck flexion neck all day. This is a common conundrum for anyone working on a laptop throughout the workday. The general recommendation for monitor height is that the top of your monitor should be at eye level. The steering wheel desk will put the monitor closest to this position, you may need to push the driver's seat back to allow for more arm room when using this type of desktop surface.

A wireless keyboard and mouse can improve your arm and hand positioning and decrease the risk of discomfort or injury. These items should be placed on a lap desk so that you can move the mouse freely and avoid overextending your reach or pressing too hard on the work surface. When mousing, be sure to place a relaxed hand on the mouse and move with whole arm movements instead of just moving your wrist.

Other key points are:

  • Use your car's Bluetooth. This will save phone battery as well as allow you to use the car's speakers to better hear and be hands free during your calls.
  • Get up and move around often (optimally, every 40-60 minutes). Be careful about being in one static position all day. Stand up, walk around the car, or stand and place the computer on the trunk or bed of the pickup and use that as a standing desk.
  • Utilize your phones hotspot. This will allow you to work online while on the go.

These are just a few ways that you can improve your mobile workstation.

Reach out to us to find out how we can assist you! 

www.ErgoFitConsulting.com or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Return to ErgoFit's Blog

Like us on            Follow Us on Logo-2C-115px-R             Tweet us Twitter logo blue  @ErgoFit_Consult

© ErgoFit Consulting, Inc. and ErgoFitConsulting.com, 2001-2017. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s owner and/or author(s) is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to the author(s) and ErgoFit Consulting, Inc / ErgoFitConsulting.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

DMCA.com Protection Status

DMCA.com Protection Status

 

© ErgoFit® Consulting, Inc. and ErgoFitConsulting.com, 2001-2022. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s owner and/or author(s) is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to the author(s) and ErgoFit® Consulting, Inc / ErgoFitConsulting.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.