Ergonomics is the science that aims to improve our posture, and mobility by working with the objects and systems around us. By prioritizing ergonomics in the workplace, employees can decrease trips to healthcare providers such as physiotherapists and massage therapists. Here are some tips to ensure that employee workstations are more systematic and structured, which helps to improve productivity and mobility in the workplace.
Ergonomics: A focus on posture
Poor posture is often linked to fatigue, poor circulation, and can lead to headaches or migraines, problems with digestion and more. Taking steps toward proper posture reduces the probability of these health issues by encouraging even shoulders and hips, a neutral spine, and body weight evenly distributed on both feet.
Although it can be tiring, recommended postural positions will strengthen your muscles and overall skeletal structure in the long run.
Here are some tips on how to set up your workspace for better ergonomic comfort:
Invest in high-quality office chairs
Make sure your chair has good support for your back and legs. The seat should have adequate padding with a smooth surface so that you can move easily around in it without getting stuck or sliding off. The chair should also allow you to sit comfortably for prolonged periods of time without feeling stiff or sore (an effective way to determine whether your chair is ergonomic).
Adjust your view with a properly positioned monitor
Monitors can cause eye strain, headaches, and neck pain if they are not positioned properly. To avoid this, adjust your monitor so that you are looking straight ahead. Make sure that your neck is not tilted too far in one direction at any time.
According to Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety, the ideal monitor position is 15 degrees below the horizontal line because it is less fatiguing than any other angle.
People who work at a desk all day are often told to get up, walk around, and stretch. It’s not always possible to get up and down from your chair that frequently.
To help you stay healthy, reduce pain, and increase productivity in the workplace, here are some
simple stretches for office workers:
Standing hamstring stretch
- Stand with your feet hip-width apart and knees slightly bent. Stretch one leg behind you and bend forward as far as you can without rounding your back. Use your arms for support if needed. Hold this position for 10 seconds before switching legs. Repeat five times on each side.
- Stand with feet hip-width apart, hands on hips and slowly rotate shoulders backward until they feel loose again (like how we would stretch after waking up).
Investing in ergonomics is investing in employee wellbeing
Ergonomic practices allow for better form and function because it makes sure that workers are using equipment in the safest way possible. It also makes them feel like they are valued by their employer, which reduces turnover and absenteeism.
If you have an ergonomics program in place, there will be fewer injuries at work and fewer days off due to injury or illness. You will also see fewer stress-related illnesses like high blood pressure or heart disease because your employees are more likely to be happy at work and not stressed out about their health issues.
To encourage a productive ergonomic setup for their employees, companies can have an allowance account. “Ergonomics” category through Honeybee allowance accounts allows a company to promote this healthy lifestyle for all employees.