Ergonomic Desk Set Up

Remember no one posture is suitable all of the time or for all people.  Regular changes to sitting posture help reduce fatigue.  Organise tasks so that regular breaks from sitting are scheduled in.

Chair setup

Back position:

  • The back rest is positioned so the curve aligns with the curve of your lumbar spine (just above the waist)
  • The back rest is slightly reclined (between 5 and 20 degrees)
  • Additional lumbar padding can be used for extra support

Seat Position:

  • Feet are flat on the floor
  • Desk is at elbow heightposture_work2
  • If the desk height is fixed raise the chair height so that elbows are at desk height and use a foot rest for foot support
  • Thighs are horizontal and the lower leg approximately vertical
  • Tilt the chair approx 10 degrees back
  • The seat is positioned as far under the desk as possible

Arm rests:

  • Arm rests are to be avoided if possible
  • If you have arm rests they are only be used when having a rest, not while working
  • If present, arm rests are to be low to allow the chair to get right under the desk

Desk Setup


  • Keyboard, mouse and other items used continuously are be reachable with elbows by side and bent to 90 degrees
  • Items such as the phone and other less used documents are be able to be reached with an outstretched arm

Computer screen:

  • Height: the top of the screen is level or slightly lower than eyes
  • Distance: screen is an arm length away from normal seated position
  • Document holders positioned between the keyboard and screen, ideally at the same height as the screen