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Ergonomics and You

Ergonomics is the field of science concerned with how to fit a job to an employee’s anatomical, physiological and psychological traits in a way that increases efficiency and well-being for the employee.

An incorrect workstation setup can lead to repetitive motion injuries and other musculoskeletal injuries. The Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) reports workplace musculoskeletal injuries are increasing. Tendonitis, carpal tunnel syndrome and low back pain are the leading causes of suffering and disability in the workplace. According to OSHA reports, there are 1.8 million work-related musculoskeletal disorders each year. Of these, 650,000 result in lost workdays each year.

The most important tip to remember is to take short breaks every 20 to 30 minutes. Get up from your desk and stretch to loosen your neck, shoulder and back muscles every half hour.

Here are a few questions to assess whether or not you need a better fitting work area:     
____Do you have enough room on your desk for all your computer equipment?
____Is the surface of your desk deep enough to allow at least 18” between your eyes and computer screen?
____Do you use a phone headset if you spend a large amount of time on the telephone?
____Is your chair height adjustable?
____Is the back of your chair adjustable up and down?
____Are there 2”-4” between the front of the chair seat and the back of your knees?
____Do you use a footrest if your feet do not rest flat on the floor?  Is the footrest made out of non-skid material?
____Do the chair arms interfere with your work?
____Do the chair arms allow you to sit with your shoulders relaxed?
____As you sit, are your knees bent at a 90 degree angle or greater?
____Is the top of your computer screen at, or just below, eye level?
____If you wear bifocals or trifocals, can you view the monitor without tilting back your head to read the screen? 
____Is your computer screen clean and free of glaring reflections? 
____When your chair is adjusted properly, is your work surface approximately at elbow level?
____Is the height of your keyboard low enough so your arms are relaxed?
____Is there a 90 degree angle between forearms and upper arms, and elbows close to your body?
____Are your wrists in line with your forearms and not bent upward, downward or side-to-side?
____Do you take short breaks every 20 to 30 minutes?

Nearly 70 percent of all work done in America today is performed while seated at work stations, a great deal of this is at computers.  Having an ergonomic work area is very important in reducing stress on the body, and reducing chances of injury.



VIDEO: Ergonomics and Your Workspace

(or click here if the one above does not work on your computer)


VIDEO: Ergonomics and Your Workspace - PART 2

(or click here if the one above does not work on your computer)



(or click here if the one above does not work on your computer)

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