Great Ergonomics in the Workplace Tips
Studies on ergonomics in the workplace indicate that optimal productivity occurs when the workstation suits the user's body. An ergonomic workstation that does not suit the user's physique would result in the user having to hunch down, crouch, slouch, strain, twist or assume some other uncomfortable position. Repeated use of such workstations can also cause hand, eye or back injuries.
Using a chair of the wrong height or size, or a chair that does not support the back or arms often relates to low productivity. The optimal seating position is where the muscles, ligaments, and tendons are relaxed, and the vertebra properly aligned to reduce pressure on discs. The key to attaining this state is to position thighs horizontal with the knees at the same level as the hips, resting the feet on the floor and the back on the backrest. There are several ergonomically designed chairs available in the marketplace that allows users to sit in such a position.
An ergonomically correct workstation mandates the correct height for the work desk and placement of the monitor and keyboard. The ideal place for the monitor is directly in front of the user, about one arm’s length (20 to 26 inches) away. This is essential to keep the head and neck as straight as possible and view the screen at eye level.
Studies have also shown that productivity increases when:
- The top-level of the desk is at elbow level when the user sits down,
- The surface holding the keyboard and mouse is about 1 to 2 inches above the user's thighs,
- The keyboard placed in front of the user's body.
Most ergonomically designed desks have adjustable keyboard trays and sufficient desktop space to achieve such optimal placements.