Recent studies reveal that the use of electronic gadgets are leading many children to adopt poor posture habits during their formative years. Our experts – a chiropractor and a physiotherapist – weigh in on the issue, and offer practical advice on selecting the right types of ergonomic furniture for your child.
DESK AND MOLL
Dr Janet Ruth Sosna Chiropractor, ElderChiropratic Clinic
Physiotherapist, Physio Connectionz
Why should we pay attention to poor posture in children? Janet Ruth Sosna (JRS):
Poor posture leads to back, neck and shoulder pain, and can also trigger tension headaches caused by muscle contractions in the head and neck regions. More seriously, poor posture can restrict lung capacity, thereby reducing oxygenation in the body. Poor posture can also lead to low self-esteem and poor body image issues, which can negatively impact a child’s social interactions.
How can the use of ergonomic furniture rectify or prevent poor posture?
JRS: Ergonomic furniture may reduce the load on the spine while the user is sitting at the desk.
Calvin Sim (CS): It is not enough to just use ergonomic furniture; knowledge of how to adjust them as your child grows is important, too.
MOLL CHAMPION DESK, $1,970, FROM ERGOKID
The Champion study desk by Moll sports a split desktop panel that can tilt at different angles so your child can read or write on either an inclined or flat surface, depending on their preference and comfort.
SARCLE DESK AND CHAIR, $2,960 AND $580, FROM ACTUS HAUSE
Made of solid oakwood, this desk and chair distinguishes itself from the usual mouldedplastic ergonomic furniture. The Sarcle series is designed to follow a kid’s growth – the chair, for instance, can be adjusted to three heights between 42cm to 48 cm.
The desk chair should have adequate back or lumbar support
Elbows should be bent at a right angle
C LEGS AND FEET
• Knees should be bent at a right angle, and at same height as hips
• Thighs should remain parallel to the ground
• Feet to lay flat on the floor
• The computer monitor should be about an arm’s length away from your eyes
• Computer screen at eye level, or no more than 5cm above eye level
KETTLER LOGO DUO II AND BERRI CHAIR SET, $1,198, FROM JARRONS & CO
The desk and chair are both made in Germany. The Berri chair features load-controlled braking, while the desk’s tabletop can be mounted to fit both left- and right-handed kids.
What advice do you have for parents who are still unconvinced about the benefits of ergonomic furniture?
JRS: As parents, the best thing you can do is to be a role model to your children by having good posture yourselves and keeping a regular exercise regime.
CS: Investing in ergonomic furniture can be costly. Whether or not you decide to invest in it, you should still encourage your young one to be physically active, be it engaging in sports or having a more active lifestyle. Also, limiting their use of mobile devices can prevent posture-related problems from worsening.
LIFETIME KIDSROOM HEIGHT AND SLANT ADJUSTABLE DESK, $1,067, FROM KUHL HOME
As its name states, this desk not only grows with your child, but can also be adjusted to slant to an angle of 0, 10 and 20 degrees. It comes in two finishes - pine wood in white lacquer, or whitewash lacquered finish.
SHOP THE LOOK Where you can get ergonomic furniture
■ ERGOKID #03-07A Wheelock Place, 501 Orchard Road, Singapore 238880
■ ERGOWORLD #03-01, 37 Jalan Pemimpin Singapore 577177 TEL: 6296-8488 www.ergoworld.com.sg
■ KIDZ ‘N’ TEENZ / ATWOOD #01-02 AMK Techlink, 20 Ang Mo Kio Industrial Park 2A, Singapore 567761 TEL: 6484-4588
■ XTRA #02-48 Marina Square, 6 Rafﬂ es Boulevard, Singapore 039594 TEL: 6336-0688 www.xtra.com.sg
■ JARRONS & CO #03-14 City Square Mall, 180 Kitchener Road, Singapore 208539 TEL: 6509-9448 www.jarrons.com.sg
BUKE COMTA KIDS STUDY DESK AND CHAIR SET, $1,599, FROM ERGOWORKS
Sold as a six-in-one bundle that includes a book holder and pen box mounted on its ergonomically designed desk and chair, the Buke Comta set also comes with a five-year warranty.
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