IT Center Blog

Healthy Well-Being When Working From Home – Part 3

April 28th, 2023 | by
Tired woman working from home streatching after typing on laptop late at night.

Source: Freepik

“Sitting is the new smoking” – everyone has probably heard this saying. Research in recent years has also shown that this is not just an empty phrase: Just 30 minutes of daily exercise has a positive effect on physical and mental health, such as strengthening the cardiovascular system or reducing the tendency to depression, etc. In part 3 of our series, we would like to give you some useful tips for feeling good and staying fit at home.


Particularly when working from home, short distances such as to the bus stop, to colleagues in the office next door or to the coffee machine are eliminated, so it is especially important here to actively pay attention to regular exercise, for example, to counteract back pain and other complaints.

Prevention is the be-all and end-all

Particularly in the case of sedentary activities, regular compensation through mobility exercise, such as yoga or similar, is especially important to prevent shortening or tension in the muscles. A 10-minute YouTube video is already sufficient. Sitting on an ergonomic chair or on a Pezi ball also helps to compensate for imbalances and additionally keep the body moving.

The monitor should be set at head height to avoid constant looking up and down and tension in the neck.

An ergonomic mouse and keyboard can be purchased as a preventive measure and not only when problems already exist.

Keep moving

Every 15 minutes, it is recommended to change the sitting posture at the workplace a little. This can be done, for example, by changing the position of the legs or feet. Every 30-60 minutes, care should be taken to stand up briefly, for which a walk to the kettle is suitable, for example.

There is no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothing: Even in colder and uncomfortable seasons, it is important to use the break for a walk outside. 😉 The Pausenexpress of RWTH Aachen University is a suitable alternative. In addition, if possible, it can be helpful to stand or walk during phone calls and longer meetings.

Maintaining posture and staying mindful

Our posture makes an essential contribution to our physical health, but also to our attitude to work. Among other things, it has an influence on emotions and thoughts. An upright, relaxed and at the same time activated posture goes hand in hand with a neutral mental attitude. On the other hand, if you make a stiff back, hunch your back, hunch your shoulders, tighten your chest and lift your chin, you are likely to adopt a defensive posture and feel more of a need to control the situation around you.

In contrast, a hunched posture with a caved-in chest that makes us appear smaller than we are promotes anxious, self-deprecating, and even depressive thoughts. Regularly and consciously perceiving the here and now can help.

To do this, it is sufficient to breathe in and out deeply several times and to consciously perceive: What do I smell? What do I hear? What do I see? What do I feel? Am I tense right now? If so, in which part of my body do I feel the tension? Progressive muscle relaxation according to Jacobson is another way to reduce physical and mental tension at work. There are numerous instructions for this on the Internet or as audio books that can be downloaded free of charge – it’s worth trying it out!

You are what you eat

Even when working from home, care should be taken to take time to eat and not to snack on the side in front of the computer. Wholesome and balanced meals are best eaten without distraction; the connection between the intestine and the psyche or the intestine and the immune system is no longer news. Frustrated eating should also be avoided if possible, and stress should be relieved in other ways.

Sport connects

Of course, a balance in your free time also helps to reduce physical and mental stress in the home office. That means, don’t go straight to the sofa after work, but go to the gym. Whether it’s strength training in the gym, really letting off steam with Zumba, jogging, Pilates or team sports, everyone can find a type of sport that they enjoy, and it also helps to keep company in your free time. The RWTH Aachen University Sports Center also offers a variety of low-cost or even free offers for this purpose, so there is something for everyone.

Breathe deeply, please!

And last but not least: Don’t forget to ventilate regularly!

Despite the energy crisis, airing should be done at least every 90 minutes for 5-10 minutes, because without oxygen our brain runs on low flame. 😉

Health Day 2023

Would you like to learn more about health? Then visit digital workshops on the topic of “Sustainably Healthy” from May 9 to 15, 2023 or on site at RWTH Aachen University for all employees and students on May 10. More information can be found on the university health management pages.

We hope you enjoy trying out our tips. Which one did you like best? Write us in the comments and stay fit and healthy! 🙂


Responsible for the content of this article are Lena Jager and Lina-Louise Kaulbach.

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