What do these all have in common? Back pain, Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, bursitis, Rotator cuff syndrome, tennis elbow...
They are all Repetitive Strain Injuries (RSI), caused by repetitive motions which wear out muscles and joints to the point of tissue damage.
Modern tech has increased the amount of RSI in the world, with "Texter's Thumb" and "Tech Neck" becoming common, chronic complaints.
Something as low-effort as mousing on the computer, when done for 8 hours a day for years on end, can easily cause injury and lasting pain... like lasting pain, that continues for months and even years after you retire your mouse.
So how can you heal and prevent these common injuries?
Here's a fact for you:
At low fatigue levels, muscles recover very quickly (think 10 seconds).
At high fatigue levels, muscles recover slowly (think 2 hours).
Throughout the day, maintaining your posture and repeating your common motions wears out your muscles. If you wait to the end of the day to take a break and let your body reset, it will take much, much longer to re-energize... and damage may have already been done.
Asking fatigued muscles to keep working for you is like lifting weights when you're already tired: you're going to hurt yourself.
So, what's the fix?
Take a 10 second break every 10 minutes.
Does that seem like a lot to you?
That's only 8 minutes over the course of an 8 hour work day and it can make a HUGE difference in your quality of life.
It takes a little concentration to establish this new habit, but once you have it, your body will be allowed to reset throughout the day and stay strong, stress-free, and well-aligned.
Benefits of micro-breaks include:
Reset muscle length (good for posture)
Increase energy and focus
And of course, prevent pain and RSI
For your 10 second break, you can:
Raise your hands to the ceiling and shake them out
Do a few squats
Stand up, look away from the screen, and roll your neck around
Do a crazy dance (maybe in private)
Go on, wiggle... It's healthy for you!