Attorney work methods have changed dramatically over the last few decades. Computers now enable attorneys, law clerks, and paralegals to conduct research without leaving their chairs all day. Increased hourly productivity, the desire to turn out high-quality work, and litigation deadlines sometimes mean that law firm employees spend longer days at the office than workers in other industries.

Many of the risk factors that contribute to musculoskeletal disorder (MSD) symptoms (e.g., carpal tunnel syndrome) may be present in law firm work. These risk factors include: awkward postures (e.g., holding the telephone in the crook of your neck for extended periods), excessive manual force (e.g., lifting computer equipment, pushing boxes of files), high repetition or frequency, and extended task duration without adequate rest.