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Enduring the physical and mental strain of distance learning

Updated: Aug 31, 2022

By Orisha Lamon

Staff Writer

Tired of the constant body aches and lethargic feelings that seem to go along with online learning? Being aware of some basic principles of ergonomics just might help! The study of ergonomics explores proper work environments for the human mind and body, which are rarely achieved during distance learning and online work. Setting up an ergonomically correct workspace will help prevent back, neck and other bodily pains. Though conditions seem strict, especially for students, the long-term effects will improve your health and relieve you of some of these annoying pains.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), effective ergonomic practices include having relaxed shoulders and arms, elbows at a 90 degrees, eyes leveled with text on the monitor, wrists straight, and feet and back supported. In the digital age we rely on electronics for almost everything we do, from academics, to recreation, to socialization. Distance learning, as well as living through a global pandemic, has also resulted in great emotional distress for many of us. If we do not take care of ourselves physically, it is nearly impossible to take care of ourselves emotionally. The over-consumption of mass media and never-ending barrage of depressing news coverage can also provoke paranoia and emotional states that can be difficult to escape. A lot of students are also concerned about what feels like a suddenly increased workload throughout online classes.

A few SOAR students have mentioned that the workload clashes between classes and it becomes very stressful. Cheyenne Brooks, a sophomore at SOAR says, “Since we are at home, they assume everything is automatically easier, but it is stressful, every single class period.” Generally, it does seem harder to adjust to online learning and teaching eight plus hours a day with little to no breaks. According to the CDC, some of the best methods to help manage the stress of online schooling include, planning your time, keeping in touch with those who support you, and being nice to yourself. The digital age has advanced in numerous ways, but there are still a number of setbacks that have detrimental effects on us physically and emotionally. It may not be easy, but these setbacks can be interpreted and solved through caring for oneself, being aware of how to adjust the ergonomics of your workspace, and maintaining your emotional well being no matter what situation you are in.

If you need help or knows someone who needs help contact:

National Suicide Prevention Hotline:

TEXT 741-741 or CALL 800-273-8255

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