2ERGONOMICS...The term “ergonomics” is derived from two Greek words: “ergon”, meaning work and “nomoi”, meaning natural laws.Ergonomists study human capabilities in relationship to work demands.
3Ergonomics is the science of designing the job, equipment, and workplace to fit the worker. Proper ergonomic design is necessary to prevent repetitive strain Injuries, which can develop over time and can lead to long-term disability.
5All of us could significantly reduce our risk of injury if we could adhere to the following ergonomic principles:All work activities should permit the worker to adopt several different, but equally healthy and safe posturesWhere muscular force has to be exerted it should be done by the largest appropriate muscle groups available.Work activities should be performed with the joints at about mid-point of their range of movement. This applies particularly to the head, trunk, and upper limbs.
6THE PROBLEM...Here, however, we arrive at a serious problem - and a challenge to conventional ergonomic thinking: In order to put these recommendations into practice, a person would have to be a skilled observer of his or her own joint and muscle functioning and would have to be able to change his or her posture to a healthier one at will. No one develops this sort of highly refined sensory awareness without special training. Therefore, in order to derive the benefits of ergonomic research, we must learn how to observe our bodies in a new way.* Any attempt to improve workplace conditions can have only limited success if this issue is ignored.
7One of the most common work-related hazards of concern to ergonomists is back pain.
13LAPTOPS/DESK TOPS: ERGONOMIC ADVICE They are not very ergonomic – it’s not usually possible to use them in a good posture and they can cause you problems. You need to try to prevent: neck or eye problems from trying to see the screen at an awkward angle.Wrist and hand problems from bending your wrists to use the keyboard, or from overusing the other input devices (mouse, rollerball, pad, etc)Shoulder or back problems from carrying the laptop, or from reaching too far to use it, or from using it extensively in an unusual posture such as slouching, bending over or lying down.Over-heating of the groin due to supporting the hot laptop on your lap (despite its name!)
14Working on a Laptop/Desktop Find a posture in which you can keep your wrists straight (neutral, in line with your forearms), your shoulders relaxed and your back supported, and in which you feel comfortable.Align the laptop centrally with your body – don’t twist around to use it.Take frequent breaks from working on the laptop, and get up to stretch and walk around at least once an hour and more frequently if possible.Change your posture often, whenever it becomes even slightly uncomfortable; don’t stay in one position for more than 15 minutes or so.Rest your eyes frequently by looking at something far away or by closing them for a minute or two.Remember to blink more to prevent your eyes feeling dry.Take whatever software training you can because the more skilled you are with the programs you use, the less time you will need to spend on the laptop.
15Make sure your battery lasts so you don’t end up having to work like this!
16Ergonomics in the workplace ...has to do largely with the safety of employees, both long and short-term. Ergonomics can help reduce costs by improving safety. This would decrease the money paid out in workers’ compensation claims. For example, over five million workers sustain overextension injuries per year. Through ergonomics, workplaces can be designed so that workers do not have to overextend themselves and the manufacturing industry could save billions in workers’ compensation claims.
17Musculoskeletal Disorders (MSD’s) There are several approaches that may be used to determine whether conditions in the workplace might be contributing to employees developing MSD’s. These approaches can be used individually or in combination.Both work-related and non-work related conditions can either individually, or by interacting with each other, give rise to musculoskeletal disorders (MSD’s).
18Ergonomics Contributing Conditions… www.OSHA.gov How do I look for conditions that may contribute to musculoskeletal disorders?Review and analyze injury and illness records to determine whether there is a pattern of ergonomic-related injuries in certain jobs or work tasks.OSHA 300 Logs and supporting 301 formsWorkers' Compensation claims