The 5 most beneficial items I used in work whilst pregnant!
The 5 most beneficial items I used in work whilst pregnant
I’m nearing my due date on my first pregnancy and now that I am finished in the office and waiting with bated breath (impatiently!) for our imminent arrival at home I have been reflecting on the past 9 months and counting my blessings that this far I have had a really healthy pregnancy.
I put a lot of this down to the fact that I am fortunate enough to work in the office interiors market so given that we supply office furniture I have excellent ergonomic office furniture at my fingertips! Below are the top 5 items I have found most beneficial over the past number of months in helping me remain comfortable and productive right up to my due date (2 days’ time!)
Ergonomic Task chair:
I am fortunate enough to have the knowledge about the importance of ergonomics in the workplace. Effectively, the setup/design of my “workstation” or desk dictates my posture, which ideally should be neutral. The key to this is the task chair I sit in every day. As it is an ergonomically designed chair, it promotes movement and allows me to lean back and relax in the chair, using the backrest which automatically then gives my lumbar and upper back the support it needs. The armrests are attached to the back rest too so when I recline I have the armrests for support as well. The chair I sit in is the Humanscale Liberty chair, it’s one of our most popular chairs and I find it encourages movement but also gives me the support I need without having to play around with loads of different manual adjustments.
Height adjustable desk:
I’m lucky enough to have an electric sit-stand desk which means that I can stand and work at the same time for short periods throughout the day. As you can imagine, sitting or standing for extended periods of time is not good for you. Sitting can restrict the flow of blood and oxygen throughout the body but standing for extended periods of time also has negative implications. I got into the habit of standing up to make a phone call when reading emails and reviewing work. This means that I was alternating between sitting and standing throughout the day and trying to go by the recommended guideline of standing for approx 10 – 15 minutes per hour. Having the option to stand whilst being productive at the same time has been really useful, particularly when you’re chained to your desk for 12 hours to meet a deadline. We have a wide range of height adjustable desks and mine is from Actiu, a Spanish furniture manufacturer we represent. It’s from their Mobility Pro range and has two electrical motors in the frame allowing you to adjust the height via up / down buttons.
Having an excuse to get up and walk around frequently is great and the cold, filtered water tap in our canteen re-filled my Ballygowan water bottle about 5 times throughout each day. I’ve never experienced thirst like I have over the past few months so having a filtered water tap to hand was brilliant and it was also a good reason to step away from my desk and take a quick break.
I’m a firm believer in the benefits of ergonomic products and I work with two monitor screens in work so having them both at the same level through the use of monitor arms has been really helpful as it allows me to adjust the screens to the correct height for my eye line and ensure I’m not leaning towards them or straining my back and neck to see the screens properly. Monitor arms let you move and rotate the screens to suit you rather than you having to adjust to suit the position of a fixed screen. This means I can maintain a neutral neck position so I don’t have to strain or twist my neck while I’m working. The Humanscale monitor arms are our most popular monitor arms, they’re really intuitive and easy to use. The one installed on my desk is the Humanscale M8 MFlex, suitable for 2 or more screens.
I found the heat in June unbearable at times and my only saving grace was a fan that helped cool me down when it was really muggy and warm out.
In hindsight, I probably should have elevated my feet more often when I was sitting at my desk. This of course, never occurred to me at the time and it was only when I finished up in the office and was at home that I noticed the swelling in my ankles had reduced. So if I had done this at the time, an empty bin placed upside down underneath my desk may well have been a feature in the top 5 items listed above! (It probably would have replaced the fan as in fairness the “heat wave” we had in June only lasted about a week!)