10 tips for creating an ergonomic workstation


Regardless of the size or activity of a company, it has been proven thatgood ergonomics are essential for a productive work environment. Conversely, poor ergonomics at work can lead to reduced concentration and, in extreme cases, the appearance of musculoskeletal problems.

However, no matter how well the company designs the workspace, it is the responsibility of every employee to ensure that they adopt good ergonomics in their workplace. All the fancy chairs, tables, armchairs or equipment in the world do not help an employee who is slouching or working awkwardly at his desk.

Here are 10 ways to create a healthy, productive and ergonomic work environment. These tips will focus on office environments, but many of the general principles apply equally to all workstations.

1. Ensure good posture at work

Whether employees work in a production workshop or in a company office, ensuring good posture in the workplace is the priority. Employees should be able to sit in a neutral, relaxed position that does not require excessive movement to perform their tasks.

Office workers should be seated with arms, wrists and forearms straight, aligned and parallel to the floor. The head should be straight, facing forward, without turning left or right, and generally in line with the body.

2. Have adjustable chairs and desks

To encourage good posture and a neutral body position, companies need to provide quality chairs, desks and adjustable equipment. The more a chair and a desk are adjustable, the more they can be adapted to each person who uses them. When it comes to ergonomics, one size certainly doesn’t fit all.

the ergonomic chair is increasingly used in offices and at home when employees are working remotely. Many jobs require constant work in front of the computer and sitting in a chair for 8 hours a day. The main advantage of ergonomic chairs is their versatility. They are ideal for people who spend whole days at their desk, as well as for those who work in front of the computer from time to time. In addition, ergonomic chairs can adapt to all movements of the user by adapting their position in relation to their back.

This allows you to always maintain a correct position of the spine and at the same time have freedom of movement during work. This type of equipment allows you to customize your individual settings according to your needs and preferencesas well as your height or weight because ergonomic chairs have a number of adjustments, including armrests, a headrest and a suitable backrest.

It should be pointed out that even for the highest quality chair, improper adjustment can negatively affect comfort and spinal health. So how do you adjust an ergonomic chair? The first element is the height of the seat, which should be such that your feet rest freely on the floor and your knees are bent at a 90 degree angle. As part of an armchair, it is also worth remembering about its appropriate depth. Too shallow a position won’t support your hips, which can lead to poor posture. In turn, setting too deep can lead to poor spinal posture.

As for the armrests, they should be adjusted to allow a 90 degree bend at the elbows, as well as to allow for maximum forearm alignment. The last important element is the adjustment of the headrest which must allow maximum comfort for the neck and the head.

3. Adjust height and distance of screens

Computers and other screens should be placed at eye level of the person using it so that your gaze is always directed downwards. Having an upward gaze throughout a working day will put a strain on your eye muscles, exhausting them and create migraines.

As far as distance goes, you don’t have to strain your neck or have to squint to see the screen. Proper ergonomics require that users do not consistently turn their necks left, right, up, or down to view the screen.

4. Optimize keyboard and mouse location

Proper keyboard and mouse setup is just as important as posture when it comes to adopting a neutral body position. If employees catch their mouse at the wrong angle or don’t keep their elbows and wrists parallel, they lose their neutral posture. Reaching for the keyboard and mouse can then cause excessive fatigue and, after prolonged exposure, injury.

Keyboards and mice should therefore be placed where they are accessible without violating the rules of neutral positioning. In addition, these two pieces of equipment must be adapted to the person who uses them. This may require flexible devices for different users.

5. Reduce repetitive movements

In a working environment, most musculoskeletal disorders are caused by repetitive movements. Even if a person applies ideal ergonomic principles, repeating the same movement over and over again stresses the muscles and eventually leads to injury.

The best way to solve this problem is to vary the tasks. Doing something different and performing a different movement, even for a relatively short duration, will reduce muscle fatigue and the risk of tissue damage during the task.

If it is not possible to switch tasks, employees must regularly change the neutral position they use. For example, in the office, employees can move from an upright sitting position to a standing position. The change in angle should be enough to relax the working muscles.

6. Get up and move

For office workers, it may be the most important tip on the list: get up and get moving! It’s so simple. Once an hour, employees have to get up and take a few minutes to walk, drink water, look out the window. This ergonomic technique helps re-energize your body and make you more productive.

7. Optimize the work environment

When we talk about ergonomics, the working environment is often forgotten. Adequate lighting, temperature, humidity and comfort are the main components of the working environment.

For the workplace to be ergonomic, the amount of light must be sufficient so as not to strain the eyesight, but it should not be too bright. It is recommended to use a light spectrum close to natural light. Too yellow or dim light will interfere with concentration, and too cold blue light will negatively affect the emotional state. In addition, the lighting must not dazzle computer screens, which means that the workplace must be equipped with soft lighting systems.

Temperature settings are a bit tricky as it depends on individual preference, but every effort should be made to maintain a comfortable temperature for as many people as possible. Ideally, the room should not be too cold or too hot. The optimum temperature will be 22°C and not more than 24°C. It is also necessary to ensure that the air, especially when the heater is turned on, is not too dry, otherwise it negatively affects the skin and mucous membranes of the eyes.

Finally, the room in which you work should be regularly ventilated so that fresh air enters the room. Also, drowsiness at work is more often caused by a lack of oxygen than a freshly eaten lunch.

8. Remember to look around you

Staring at a computer screen all day can tire your eyes. To reduce eye strain, employees should regularly look away from the screen every 10 to 20 minutes or so to focus on something more than 10 meters away. A clock on the wall, a tree outside the window, or something else. Changing the focus to something far away will force your eyes to adapt and allow the eye muscles to relax.

9. Equip yourself with ergonomic accessories: footrests, helmets and briefcases

Over the years, office equipment vendors have developed many ergonomic accessories to help businesses improve their workplaces. Short people may benefit from a footrest, for example, if the workstation desk is not adjustable.

People who have to talk on the phone all day will need a headset with a microphone to free up their hands and save their necks.

People who need to read a lot of printed material will probably need a briefcase, preferably adjustable, and possibly suitable desk lighting.

10. Colors Matter

To make an ergonomic workplace pleasant for you, the choice of colors in the interior is important. Employ light matte tones that do not cause unwanted reflections are preferable. Even if you are very fond of bright colors, in large quantities in a work environment, they are tiring and can even increase nervousness. However, small, unobtrusive light accents will definitely improve your mood. When designing a workplace, keep in mind that our vision is particularly fond of pale green tones.

The final word

The design of the workplace not only increases productivity and concentration, but also ensures a good mood for employees. In addition, it helps reduce fatigue and ensures the health of employees. The ergonomic workplace is distinguished above all by comfortable height-adjustable desks and armchairs. A good office design and a pleasant working atmosphere will help your employees to reach their full potential.



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