I have been freelancing for a few years, and putting in such long hours has taken its toll on my back. I’m wondering if you have dealt with this problem in the past. If so, have you acquired any secret tips or tricks for easing back pain while maintaining a full workload as a freelancer?
- Stretching – once a day for at least 10 minutes. I use a combo of stretches I’ve learned along the way and some yoga. Try MyYogaBlog by Ursula. She says: Just being ordinary is immensely beautiful. I suspect if I spend more time at it I’d get even more benefit.
- Ergonomic keyboard – that hump in the middle seems to help my wrists. This one works well for me: Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Desktop 7000
- Trackball instead of a mouse like this: Trackball Mouse
- I sit on a kneeling chair sort of like the one in the photo, and I also sometimes use an exercise ball to sit on. Regular chairs and I don’t get along well anymore.
- Articulating wrist rests I bought years and years ago. They are now available at http://www.fentek-ind.com/ergorest.htm
But the biggest single tip I can give you is stand up and move away from the computer at least every two hours, and preferably every hour!
It’s worth learning more about ergonomics at the computer. One good source is OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration). Ergoblog publishes info on products and ideas that can help freelance writers and others who spend hours at the computer.