Virtual School Ergonomic Tips for Your Kids

October 21, 2020

Just as adults need good body mechanics for remote working, it’s equally important to create an ergonomically friendly school zone for children.

Without the proper body positioning, children can experience neck strain/pain or struggle with attention and sitting for long periods because they have poor core strength.

Good Shepherd Pediatrics’ Cassandra Plows, PT, DPT, says there are a number of tips and techniques to keep children safe and comfortable while completing work at home. Here are some suggestions to reduce the risk of injuries caused by repeated use of computers/electronics.

  • Keep feet propped so that the child’s knees stay at 90 degrees during seated activities. Try propping feet with items like boxes or a laundry basket.
  • Position the laptop or computer monitor at the same level as their face so they do not have to look down.  This can strain the neck muscles if not positioned correctly.
  • Try to avoid sitting your child on the couch or in a lounge chair where they often end up in a slouch with head and neck forward.
  • If possible, try having your child complete virtual school or homework by standing rather than sitting to change up the position.
  • Allow for brain breaks every 40 minutes if possible by playing a movement game, like a quick game of Simon Says or exercises like jumping jacks and sit-ups.
  • Allow for equal amounts of scheduled play and virtual work time. For example, if your child has a 3 hours total of class in one day, split up the day so that there is at least 3 hours of play away from a screen, whether that is outside, with puzzles, etc.

If your child is experiencing any pain or you have concerns about your child’s physical or cognitive development, please contact Good Shepherd Pediatrics at 1-888-44-REHAB