RSI and How To Prevent It

A Look into Muscular Damage and Ergonomics

What is RSI?

RSI, or Repetitive Strain Injuries are injuries to numerous muscles and bones, such as the tendons, joints and neck muscles. Can be caused by force, rapid movement, repetition of tasks and excessive strain
Types of Jobs Where RSI is a Danger
  • typist
  • clerk
  • jackhammer operator
  • maintenance worker

Examples of RSI include Carpel Tunnel Syndrome, bursitis, tendonitis, tensynovitis and trigger finger.

Symptoms and Injury Stages

  • Numbness
  • Burning Sensations
  • Aching
  • Swelling Hands
  • Dry, shiny palms

Stages of Injury

  1. One or two of the symptoms showed above would present themselves, such as pain in the arms and hands
  2. Symptoms would worsen, become more frequent and increase in variety
  3. Should you take a break from some of your routines for a short while, such as typing slower if you are a typist, the symptoms would go away.


Ergonomics-The discipline focused on understanding the best position to assume while working, in order to prevent injuries such as RSI. Usually involves positioning your body in more comfortable, healthier ways. By doing things such as keeping your arms vertical to the keyboard, sitting up straight, and keeping the monitor a good distance away from you so that you do not have to squint or bend your neck, as well as having your wrists slightly raised above the keyboard.
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Exercises to Prevent RSI
  • Neck Rotations
  • Chin Tucks
  • Neck Side Bends
  • Neck Forward Bends
  • Chest Stretches
  • Wrist Extensions
  • Wrist Flexing
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Proper Way to Set Up Work Space Ergonomically

  • Make sure work space is positioned parallel to glare from any windows
  • Monitor Screen tilted upwards as to avoid bending of neck
  • Use lighting wherever possible to avoid leaning forward and stretching neck
  • Try to stop work sit back every 5minutes, and look around, thus stretching your neck and relaxing it.
  • Tilt your monitor upwards in order to avoid glare
  • Keep keyboard top 28 inches from the floor
  • Keep elbows at 90 degrees
  • Arm rests recommended for chair, seeing as they allow arms to relax while typing, thus reducing stress upon them

Works Cited

"Repetitive Strain Injuries." Canadian Union of Public Employees. N.p., n.d. Web. 02 May 2016

"Symptoms of Repetitive Strain Injury." Symptoms of Repetitive Strain Injury. N.p., n.d. Web. 02 May 2016.