Many occupations in the modern world involve sitting in front of the computer. Translating is no different. Sitting itself would not present a challenge nor an issue, if we didn’t sit nearly all day long. Combine this habit with a keyboard and a mouse, and you may experience pain in your wrists, shoulders and neck.
You are often presented with the following “perfect” posture when sitting in front of a computer:
Although correct, this is in practice nearly impossible to follow. You will get tired, you’ll likely slouch, you will lean to the side, you may also lean your head in nearer to the monitor, and you will surely strain your wrists if you let the weight of your arms rest on them.
In practice, your seating in front of the computer resembles this:
Since there is no simple fix, I would like to propose what I came up with, after two decades of sitting in front of a computer.
The trick is to raise your desk as high as possible, until your elbows rest on it. Then, you are to pull your seat as close to the desk, as well as push your keyboard forward (as well as the monitor and mouse). The seating position then looks like this:
Sitting like this relieves pressure off the wrists, and allows you to raise your head toward the monitor. It also allows you to lean back into your backrest, but you should try to make sure you have your lumbar spine supported.
There are a number of rather expensive solutions out there too, from standing desks, ergonomic mice and keyboards, chairs, even ergonomic footrests, but these are often a quick fix. There is no simple cure-for-all, so I suggest you experiment with the mentioned seating position and find your own best solution.