Eight Fundamental Ergonomic Principles for Better Work Performance

October 5, 2018 Published by Leave your thoughts

Do you ever come home feeling sore or in pain after a long day at the office? Workplace ergonomics has become a major topic nationwide due to a steady increase in repetitive strain injuries, like carpal tunnel syndrome or severe back pain. Research shows low work surfaces, unsupportive chairs, insufficient shoe support and awkward hand tools can cause years of repeated surgery, debilitating pain, decrease in productivity, loss of wages and higher costs for the employer.

Unfortunately, many employees think there’s no other option but to continue suffering in fear of losing their job. That’s where workplace ergonomics principles—and quality office furniture in Woodward, OK—save the day. Keeping these principles in mind will help you recognize and address any problem areas before employees are injured:

  • Maintain neutral posture: The body is best aligned and balanced when sitting or standing in a neutral posture. Working in a neutral position reduces the amount of stress placed on the body. It also helps keep the joints aligned and gives the body maximum control. The neutral posture will help the back, neck, wrists and legs.
  • Work in the power zone: Lifting things in the power zone can prevent many common injuries. Using the power zone method, boxes and other items should be held close to the body in between the mid-thigh and in line with the chest. Incorporating this simple tactic will ensure employees are operating from the best height and reach to help them work both efficiently and pain free.
  • Reduce unnecessary strain: Workers unknowingly cause a huge strain on their backs by lifting a load by bending over. This inverted “v-curve” can place a tremendous amount of pressure on the spine. Using a tilter or lifter can help.
  • Seek support: Research shows that sitting hunched over a desk every day for years can have devastating results, like back pain. Outfit employees with the right office furniture in Woodward, OK to prevent injuries. Select chairs with enough lumbar support to maintain the proper curve in the small of the back.
  • Keep everything in reach: Each employee has a “reach envelope” while they are sitting at a desk or table—this is the semi-circle the arms make as they reach out. Frequently used items should be kept within this reach envelope to limit the amount of strain placed on the body while reaching.
  • Work at the right height: All work should be done at about elbow height. The keyboard should be level with the elbow, and the computer screen is best placed at eye level. However, heavier work is best done a little lower than elbow height.
  • Move and stretch: The body needs to be exercised and stretched regularly. Make it a priority to give employees enough time to stretch throughout the day. Sit-stand workstations are a great option, as they allow the worker to alternate between positions as needed or desired.
  • Lighting: Lighting is often overlooked in many workspaces. Harsh computer screens and documents with tiny print can stress the eyes if there isn’t other lighting available. A small desk lamp will help provide the right amount of light.

Ready to improve conditions for your employees? Stop by Devine’s Office Supplies today for the best selection of office furniture in Woodward, OK!

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