Culture & Entertainment

10 steps to an ergonomic workspace

By:
Canadian Living
Culture & Entertainment

10 steps to an ergonomic workspace

By:
A senior web editor's work demands lots of time in front of a computer; in a typical workday, there is plenty of typing and mouse-clicking and scrolling. And when you're focused on deadlines, it's far too easy to sit for hours on end without stretching, resting or moving your body more than a few inches in any direction. Office workplace hazards might not seem as obvious as the threats that endanger a construction worker, an electrician or a police officer. But health hazards at the office can be stealthy little buggers that can lead to a whole lot of pain. [caption id="attachment_13981" align="aligncenter" width="400"] typing hands Photo by blary54/ sxc.hu[/caption]   10 steps to an ergonomic workspace Is your workspace ergonomically sound? To make easy work of protecting your body from repetitive strain injury , consult this checklist and adjust your workspace if needed.
  1. When seated, knees bend at about a 90-degree angle. Use a foot rest if needed.
  2. Work surface is at elbow level.
  3. The top of your computer monitor is at eye level.
  4. Your monitor is no closer than 20 inches away from your eyes; 16 inches if you wear bifocals. The size of your monitor can factor in so pay attention to your head and neck. A comfortable viewing distance allows you to keep your head relaxed rather than craned up or down, and your torso is straight rather than leaning forwards or back.
  5. Your wrists remain flat when typing, forming a straight line from your forearms to your knuckles.
  6. When standing behind your chair, the top of the seat aligns with the area just below your knee caps.
  7. The chair back rests into your lower back's hollow.
  8. Your monitor is free from reflections from overhead lights or incoming sunlight from nearby windows. Tilt your screen at a 10- to 20-degree angle to avoid glare.
  9. Chair armrests just skim your forearms when you bend your elbows at a 90-degree angle.
  10. The keyboard is low enough so you can naturally place your arms at your sides while typing and your wrists and hands remain flat.
Remember to listen to your body's cues that signal you need to take stretch breaks and discuss health concerns with your doctor. Sources: Workplace Safety and Insurance Board -- Repetitive Strain Injuries (PDF). Ontario Ministry of Labour -- Workstation Layout -- Computer Ergonomics Ergotron.com -- interactive Workspace Assessment How often do you take stretch breaks at your desk?
Comments
Share X
Culture & Entertainment

10 steps to an ergonomic workspace

Login