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Heal Computer Shoulder, Neck, Back and Wrist Pain With 5 Easy Moves

Posted Jul 19 2011 12:40pm

Sitting at your computer giving you shoulder, neck, back and wrist painThere’s hope.  Don’t worry.  And the cure won’t cost you a trip to the doc either.  All you gotta do is invest about 5 minutes in yourself about every hour you’re held hostage at your desk and I guarantee you’ll be kissing your neck, back, shoulder and wrist pain goodbye. 

First things first, before we go over the 5 healing anti-desk posture exercises. 

Get your desk and computer in order.

I’m not talking organization either.  Although that may not be a bad idea if it applies…  The correct set up of your screen, keyboard, chair and body position is a must before you work on undoing the muscular and fascial damage from years of bad computer and desk ergonomics. Here’s the spec’s for a happy neck, back, shoulder and wrist set up.

Monitor, Keyboard and Mouse


Adjust your chair so that your knees are at a right (90 deg. angle) and your feet flat on the floor.

Ergo or Stability Ball chairs are awesome choices because they both allow the spine to naturally hold its curves.  I like the idea of the ball too because that little bit of instability created by its shape recruits more of your core stabilizer muscles, making your sitting a little more active, giving you more bang for your buck.


Either the traditional style computer desk with a pull-out keyboard drawer desk or the growing in popularity standing models are good.  Just be sure to set up your monitor, keyboard and mouse at the recommended ergonomic heights and distances.  I’ve actually purchased an adjustable model that allows for both sitting or standing. 

Since I’ve moved I’ve been standing and love it.  You have to ease into it, but in the long run I believe it’s healthier and more conducive to better overall posture because standing at a desk with your arms at the proper angle for typing doesn’t promote the forward posture and the shortened hip flexors that traditional seated desk positions do.

Laptop Issues

Laptops were originally designed for limited use.  Not the case anymore.  Laptops, netbooks and IPads seem to be more popular than desk top models for sure. However, with that convenience and portability we’re paying the price with more neck, back, shoulder and eye strain. 

Laptop Fixes

Use an external keyboard, mouse, monitor, docking station or elevated stand whenever possible so you can set things up at the proper heights and distances.

Fabulous 5 Pain Reliever Circuit

Now that you’ve got your equipment set up right, all you have to do is take a break for about 5 minutes every hour, walk around a bit and do the following 5 mobility, strengthening and stretching moves.  If you’re in an office environment, don’t feel weird either even if your co-workers aren’t smart enough to jump in and join you.  They’ll be the ones with the pain in the neck not you.

1.) Body Swinging (Qi Gong) – 10 repetitions each side

2.) Standing Cobras - 10 repetitions (Same movement as lying only standing)

3.) Prisoner Chair Squats10 repetitions

4.) Standing Hip Flexor Stretch - 5 repetitions each leg

5.) Bicep/Forearm Stretch - 5 repetitions each arm and side

That’s it.  5 quick minutes of prevention will save you a ton of pain, misery and stiffness.  If you’ve got any other tricks that you use to ease your computer desk pain, please share it in the comment section.

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