Do you get headaches, shoulder pain, tightness in your upper back, tingles or burning in your shoulder or arm?
Then you might be experiencing
Effecting muscles and tendons between neck and wrist, mousing shoulder occurs when you hold one tense, awkward posture for a long period or repetitively over time without taking proper rest and recovery breaks.
As we work with screens, typing or swiping, we build up tension in our neck and shoulders. The best way to release that tension is with a few big shoulder rotations, deep breath and consciously drop your shoulders, relax back into the chair with arms supported and sitting squarely at your work.
We tend to (the problem)
• lean towards the mouse
• let the mouse drift away from the keyboard
• lean on our elbow or forearm
• rest on the heal of our hand instead using big actions to move the mouse (stir the pot)
• have arms unsupported
• have tense shoulders when stressed
• have our chair to low forcing shoulders to lift when typing
• FORGET TO RETURN TO A RELAXED NEUTRAL WORK POSTURE
Quick (possible) fixes
• Use mouse close to the keyboard
• Try to use both hands to mouse (it’s pretty easy)
• Avoid leaning forward or to the side
• Take quality breaks from screens
o Micro-breaks: stretches, standing up on phone calls, of ‘Roll-Reset-Relax’ (see below)
o Mini-breaks: go the long way around to get a coffee, walk at lunchtime
o Macro-breaks: an overnight or weekend complete break from any small repetitive movement involving your muscles between your neck and wrist (scrolling through social media is not a rest break).
One important habit
ROLL RESET RELAX
• A few big shoulder rotations, deep breath, consciously drop your shoulders and relax back into the chair with arms supported and sitting squarely at your work.
• Do this anytime you find yourself leaning forward, to one side, working with tense shoulders or any time you feel tension or pain in your upper body.