Which Is an Ergonomic Guideline to Technology Use?

September 11, 2023
David Sunnyside

The vast majority of ergonomic experts agree that there are some basic designs that promote well-being and increase productivity. The most common guidelines include ensuring that the wrists and arms are level or slightly bent, the head is tilted and balanced, the back is fully supported with appropriate lumbar support, and the feet are flat on the floor or in a footrest.

A padded keyboard and mouse or trackball are also essential for most workers. Individuals who talk on the phone all day may need a headset, and those who must read printed documents frequently need a document holder or adjustable lighting. Those who do manual work such as chopping wood, welding, or cleaning up sand, dust, or animal droppings will benefit from the use of a respirator and gloves to limit exposure to airborne contaminants.

Most musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) result from repetitive motion, so even if an employee follows perfect ergonomic principles, doing the same thing over and over can lead to stress on tissues that can cause pain or injury. The key to preventing this is to change tasks frequently.

Many enterprises have a person or team tasked with establishing and enforcing a sound ergonomics policy and all employees should contact this person for assistance. Depending on the size of an enterprise, the organization may have adjustable equipment that can be loaned to employees for their personal workspaces. If an employer is not able to provide the necessary equipment, consider using an outside consultant to make recommendations.

David Sunnyside
Co-founder of Urban Splatter • Digital Marketer • Engineer • Meditator
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