Office ergonomic improvements involve the application of basic workplace principles to address a worker’s discomfort, chronic pain or repetitive motion injuries. Good ergonomics does not always mean obtaining new furniture and equipment. A large part of ergonomics and comfort involves workstation organization, equipment orientation and work habits. This bulletin reviews equipment and materials that typically are used in a computer workstation and provides suggestions to minimize the risk of injuries.
Musculoskeletal disorders such as tendonitis and carpal tunnel syndrome can result from improperly positioned equipment that creates stressful working postures. Symptoms can include pain and swelling, numbness and tingling (hands “falling asleep”), loss of muscle strength, and reduced range of joint motion. If you have any of these symptoms, report them to your supervisor as soon as possible. If these symptoms are not treated early, they may result in discomfort in the affected area, chronic pain or injury.
Chairs can be crucial in preventing back pain, as well as in improving employee performance in office work. As the majority of office workers spend most of their time sitting, a properly designed and adjustable chair is critical.
Features of a good chair:
1. Seat pan adjusts up and down quickly and easily. The chair height is correct when the entire sole of the foot can rest on the floor or footrest and the back of the knee is slightly higher than the seat of the chair.
2. Seat pan should be slightly concave with a softly padded, rounded or “waterfall” front edge. Select alternate seat pan and seat back sizes for large or small employees.
3. Seat back easily adjusts forward and back and up and down, with full lumbar contour. The fullest part of the contour should be positioned in the small of the back, near the waistline.
4. Chair arms adjust up and down and in and out from body. Position chair arms so they support forearms in and near the sides, with elbows only slightly forward from the hipbones. If both features are not an option, eliminate armrests.
5. Five legs or casters for stable support.Read More »Office Ergonomics – Working Comfortably