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Ergonomics Meaning and Its Importance in the Workplace

Ergonomics is a term culled from two Greek words "ergon," which means work and "nomos," which means laws. Today, ergonomics meaning has evolved into a science that deals in designing the workplace or a job according to the needs of the workers, not just allowing the workers to fit into the workplace or job. Ergonomics encompasses all facets of a job, from all the physical factors that cause stress on certain body parts, to the environmental factors affecting the general well-being of the workers.

Each year, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) received various reports on work-related musculoskeletal disorder (MSDs), which account for the largest occupational injuries and ailments experienced by workers in the United States alone. Employers pay billions to compensate their employees suffering from the disorder. While some workers are able to return to their jobs, others with the more serious case of MSD face termination due to their crippling condition. To address the problem, some companies have already implemented an ergonomics program knowing that the maladies are largely associated with the nature of jobs and the work environment. This is more often than not, a company head tries to read a Merax gaming chair review to see how this type of chair can benefit his staff.

Identifying Ergonomic Risk Factors

Effective ergonomics ensures high productivity, reduced chances of illnesses and injuries, and increased satisfaction level in the workforce. Good ergonomics is mainly concerned on how to design an ideal workplace where the conditions become conducive for the performance of the tasks. It deals with analyzing work-related factors that contribute to the development of MSDs and in providing recommendations to alleviate or prevent them. One common recommendation is to purchase an ergonomic office chair.

Physical Stressors: These are ergonomic risk factors common in jobs involving the use of repetitive, forceful, or continuous use of the hands. Repetitive motions include typing or carpentry jobs. Other work activities belonging to this group include heavy lifting, pushing, or pulling heavy object subjecting the body in awkward position. Still there are several physical stressors than can be found in tasks where there is large amount of vibration. These are jobs reserved for construction workers using jackhammer or factory workers assigned to vibrating machines.

Environmental Factors: Poor ergonomics is not only about the execution of the job, but it also includes the general condition of the workplace. Excessive noise, smoke, or presence of microscopic allergen all contribute to poor indoor air quality. A workplace without sufficient ventilation and illumination can cause workers to suffer from the sick building syndrome, manifested by headaches, fatigue, colds, and skin rashes. Excessive noise emanating from machineries and equipment can result to permanent deafness. Lack of proper lighting can strain the eyes resulting to poor vision. Lack of ventilation can prevent air circulation, trapping polluted air inside and deterring the entry of clean air.

Although employers have the responsibility to implement an effective ergonomic plan, workers can do their part in taking care of their own health and safety. It is important to listen to every signal the body gives out. A tingling pain can be an indication that something is already wrong. Find out the cause and learn to customize your own workstation according to your needs. More importantly, you need to know what to look for when shopping for an ergonomic chair. Understanding ergonomics is only useful if you can experience comfort, safety, and productivity in the workplace.