Can You Still Have Bad Posture With Good Computer Ergonomics?

Posture collapse

Today I’m publishing a guest post article by Dr. Natalie Cordova.

She is writing about an issue I’ve quietly been wondering about for some time.

How much of our poor posture and muscular aches and pains are caused by poor ergonomics?  How much of it is caused by poor muscular (especially core) strength? I don’t touch a laptop without using an external monitor and keyboard, but I still suffer from pains and aches. I think that is partly because I simply don’t have the strength to maintain my good posture for a very long time.

An hour or a little longer perhaps, then my posture collapses.

But now it’s Dr. Cordova’s turn.


Learning about computer ergonomics seems to be the term everyone searches for when what they really want to know is how to improve their posture. Much time and effort has been dedicated to creating the perfect workstation and yet the posture problems persist.

They are either in pain or tired of seeing their rounded shoulders and since their problems seems to get worse with each passing hour at their computer, it only makes sense that it must be a computer ergonomics problem.

So why doesn’t everyone have the exact same posture? Why do only some of the people sitting at a computer all day get the rounded shoulders and forward head posture while others get low back issues and some no problems at all.

Is it really only about the computer ergonomics?

If we were to following everyone around during the day, we’d probably find that some people have added in back strengthening activities, even if just be accident. They may not even realize some of the good things they’re doing to help their posture.

Maybe they exercise, or hit the gym regularly. It could be that even though they don’t specifically target their posture muscles, they do enough of a well-rounded exercise regimen to positively effect their posture.

Computer ergonomics are a good thing. Since their implementation, repetitive stress injuries have decreased and I think we all have a better understanding about how a small, seemingly insignficant movement can be magnified by doing it over and over again for long periods of time. Still, your posture will play a huge role in how you feel.

About the author – Dr. Natalie Cordova is a posture exercise expert, chiropractor, and health educator. More information can be found at his website at


I’d like to hear your feedback. Do you know of ayone who has a desk job and who does NOT suffer from constant musculoskeltal pains? Marion?


  1. I must confess my back is sorest first thing in the morning. I obviously need to do something about my mattress because sometimes I don’t want to move or get out of bed as my back is so sore….

    Because I (mostly) do some exercise each working day I get some accidental back strengthening mentioned by Dr Cordova. But something I need to do better is get up and move more during the day. I tend to stay at my work desk for hours on end and not stretch out enough.


    • Robert Thomson says:

      I had that same problem especially if I slept in, finally figured out it was lower cross syndrome from sitting too much.

      • Satu says:

        Very interesting, Thomas! I had heard of the lower crossed syndrome but I needed to check. Did you get rid of your back pain?

  2. Jane says:

    My back and legs are so sore all the time, especially after sitting at work all day! Plus, I work 12 hour shifts, so I sit a lot longer than most people. I try to get up and move when I can, but I don’t have a job where I can move around a lot. No matter how I adjust my chair (my supposedly ergonomic chair), I am always sore!! I have tried the butt cushion, the foot rest … pretty soon I am going to be bringing in a heating pad! 🙂

    • Satu says:

      That sounds really grueling, Jane! I would probably die if I had to work 12-hour shifts in a job where I can’t move. I’m lucky I can move, but I often forget to do that when I get engrossed in/into something.

  3. I have been suffering from backache since a long time now. Currently I am visiting a physiotherapist but it has to do with my mattress according to me or my sleeping posture which is really difficult to keep a tab on when you are knackered after the days work.

  4. Marion says:

    I agree with the readers above. I think that sleeping in funny positions has caused many people aches and pains. Regarding my sitting positions at work, I am just about the antzy-est person I know at an office. I’m out of my chair about every 15 minutes, doing something or another, which probably saves me from these issues.

    🙂 Marion

    • Satu says:

      HI Marion!

      I thought maybe your superior muscular strength has saved you from these issues (being able to do upside down pushups and suff no mere ordinary mortal can do 🙂 ) I’ve never heard you complain about it.

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