WH&Y authors: Professor Leon Straker

Citation: L. Straker, B. Maslen, R. Burgess-Limerick, P. Johnson & J. Dennerlein (2010) Evidence-based guidelines for the wise use of computers by children: Physical development guidelines, Ergonomics, 53:4, 458-477



Computer use by children is common and there is concern over the potential impact of this exposure on child physical development. Recently principles for child-specific evidence-based guidelines for wise use of computers have been published and these included one concerning the facilitation of appropriate physical development. This paper reviews the evidence and presents detailed guidelines for this principle. The guidelines include encouraging a mix of sedentary and whole body movement tasks, encouraging reasonable postures during computing tasks through workstation, chair, desk, display and input device selection and adjustment and special issues regarding notebook computer use and carriage, computing skills and responding to discomfort. The evidence limitations highlight opportunities for future research. The guidelines themselves can inform parents and teachers, equipment designers and suppliers and form the basis of content for teaching children the wise use of computers.

About The Authors


Leon Straker is a John Curtin Distinguished Professor of Physiotherapy, focussed on adolescent behav...