Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety
Symbol of the Government of Canada

Why is body position or posture important while sitting?

Poor arrangement of the workstation encourages an awkward body position. A poor body position or posture can hinder breathing and blood circulation and contribute to injuries affecting people's ability to move.

What should I avoid while sitting?

  • Tilting the head forward. This helps prevent neck injury.
  • Sitting without lumbar support. This helps prevent back pain.
  • Working with arms raised. This helps prevent neck and shoulder pain.
  • Bending wrists. This helps prevent muscle cramps.
  • Working with unsupported forearms. This helps prevent shoulder and back pain.
Avoid working with unsupported...
  • Cramming thighs under a worktable. This reduces blood circulation.
  • Sitting on a chair that has poor support. It can overturn and cause injuries.

How does sitting on a chair that is too high affect your body?

  • It destabilizes your body causing tiredness.
  • It puts pressure on your thighs. This reduces the back flow of blood and can cause swelling in the legs, varicose veins, and swelling in the ankles.
  • It puts pressure on the sciatic nerve causing pain or discomfort.
  • It prevents proper use of the chair's lumbar support.

How does sitting on a chair that is too low affect your body?

  • It disrupts blood circulation in lower legs, causing swelling.
  • It puts pressure on internal organs.
  • It creates too much pressure on buttocks and causes discomfort.
Avoid sitting on a chair that is too low

How does work at a worktable that is too high affect your health?

  • It prevents use of proper lumbar support and can cause back injury.
  • It over-stretches spine and can cause back injury.
  • It forces the head to tilt forward and can cause neck injury.
  • It stresses shoulders and causes pain.
  • It tires the whole body.
Back To Top

Want more information?

You may be interested in these related products and services from CCOHS:

For further assistance with a particular workplace topic or issue, contact our Inquiries & Client Services team. This service is free, reliable, and confidential.

Document last updated on November 1, 2010

Copyright ©1997-2015 Canadian Centre for Occupational Health & Safety