23 March 2019

Ergonomics for a Healthier Workplace

Whether you work in an office or on-site, the awareness and practice of safe ergonomics in your day-to-day will ensure you can work harder and experience fewer injuries on the job.

What is ergonomics?

Ergonomics is the act of finding the right ‘fit’ between a worker and the conditions and environment of the job. If you work at a desk, it’s looking at how you can sit, move and organise your space in a way that keeps you comfortable and productive. If you work on site, this means finding the right tools, equipment and work methods to ensure you stay safe and protect your long-term health.

The healthier you are at the end of the day, the higher your productivity and the greater the chances of a long career in your chosen profession.
Here are some tips for implementing good ergonomics in
your workplace…

At the office:

  • Adjust your chair so your feet rest on the floor and your knees are level with your hips – or try out a standing desk.
  • Keep your wrist in a straight, relaxed position when typing and use a wrist rest if needed.
  • Keep all frequently-used items close by to reduce unnecessary stretching
  • Watch your posture. Stay centred in front of the monitor with your knees level with your hips.
  • Use a headset for phone calls to avoid neck and wrist strain.

On-site:

  • Raise work to waist height on tables or sawhorses to avoid stooping or squatting on the floor to complete tasks.
  • Use knee or other padding when kneeling for floor-level tasks.
  • Find stand-up extensions for hand tools when possible.
  • Make sure your tools fit your size – women especially – so the grip is comfortable to avoid wrist and hand strain.
  • When working overhead, use extensions or lifts which allow you to hold tools at waist or shoulder level – instead of above your head – to avoid shoulder injury.

A good way to approach any work you do is to assess what tasks or motions are repetitive and find solutions which keep them comfortable. Eliminating the seemingly small or unimportant strains from your workday can have a positive effect on your health – which your body will thank you for in the long-run.