In a study conducted and published in the Journal of Physical Therapy Science, having a lousy stance can affect vital respiratory functions. It is because poor posture creates disharmony in the respiratory muscles of an individual. In another research published in the same journal, having a forward head posture declines the proprioceptive function. Proprioception refers to the ability of any person to sense stimuli arising within the body, including equilibrium, motion, and position. The two studies have proven that having poor posture can pose health risks. It is why it is vital to practice good posture to lessen the chances of getting diseases.
The Role of Ergonomics
Using a seat that is too small can lead to an awkward position — resulting in a bad posture. A bad stance can cause discomfort, fatigue, and body pain. These symptoms of a musculoskeletal disorder are often experienced by workers who are exposed to prolonged sitting. Having this illness can decrease an employee’s productivity. It is why it is essential to make the workplace a safer and more efficient environment for all employees.
The role of ergonomics is to provide effective solutions that can help anyone work comfortably. Incorporating ergonomics into daily work should be taken into consideration. It trains the person’s body to sit or stand in a position where there are less strain and pressure. Ergonomics does not only help in creating a secure and convenient work environment, but it also improves the health of the employees.
Incorporating Ergonomics in Your Everyday Life
A good posture is essential to one’s balance. It keeps the spine, bones, and joints in proper alignment. You may practice the proper stance until your body becomes used to it. Doing so will not only lessen your body pain, but it can also prevent you from getting injuries due to muscle strain. Through the existence of ergonomics, you may correct your posture not just at work, but wherever you are. Below are some simple tips in incorporating ergonomics in your daily living:
#1 Give your back the support it needs. Practicing good posture can alleviate the pain caused by long hours of sitting. You may start by sitting up straight against the wall or couch. Place a pillow under your knees. Having back support is also recommended when you are driving. Sitting in a 100–110 degree tilt in a back position can reduce the stress in your back. You have to ensure that the seat supports your low back and requires you to have a slight bend in your legs. If you think that the support is not enough, you may use a low back pillow for additional support.
#2 Improve your sleeping position. When the day is over, and you want to rest, you could opt to sleep in your bedroom and relax your body. You may sleep in your favourite position and lie down using more than one pillow. However, it is vital to know that your sleeping position can also cause chronic pain and back injuries. To incorporate ergonomics in sleeping, you can lie on your back and use only one pillow under your head. If you are more comfortable sleeping on your side, you have to bend your legs and place a pillow on your knees for support.
The type of mattress should also be considered to incorporate ergonomics in your sleep. Even though soft cushions can provide you comfort, they may not give you the back and neck support that you need. To prevent yourself from getting chronic pain, you may want to upgrade your mattresses. Another way to improve your ergonomics in sleeping is to use an ergo pillow, which is designed to provide less stress on your neck. Switching to ergonomic pads can be one of the best options for side sleepers.
#3 Use an ergo mouse. An ergonomic mouse is becoming more popular nowadays. It is because this type of mouse enables you to use your natural hand position when you utilize it. Doing so can alleviate your discomfort and ease your muscle pain. Using an ergonomic mouse can reduce your risk of having wrist injuries because it relieves the muscles and tendons. It does not require you to flex your forearm so you will not feel fatigued and experience numbness in your arm, elbow, and hand.
#4 Work on a slanted surface. You may have an ergonomic workstation, but what happens when you go home? If you don’t have an ergo chair or a standing desk for your ergonomic needs, then you can apply some improvisations. If you have some tasks to do at your home, try to find a slanted surface where you can work. Compared to horizontal desks, using a slanted workstation can make your work easier and faster because it can provide better access. Not only that, a slanted surface can provide less fatigue on your joints and less strain on your back.
Essential Ergonomic Tools and Accessories
Ergonomics should not only be considered at work, but it should be a part of one’s lifestyle. It does not only keep any individual from getting injuries, but it also promotes having proper posture. There are ergonomic tools and accessories that you can use to improve your workstation, even if you are at home.
Some individuals use a stand-up desk in their work station. It is a type of desk that requires you to stand comfortably while working. Since prolonged sitting can increase the risk of having severe illnesses like diabetes and heart disease, standing could be one of the best alternatives. There are adjustable stand-up desks that are available in the market so you can change them depending on your height.
If you already have a standing desk at home or in a workplace, you may want to add some tools and accessories which are essential in improving your ergonomic lifestyle. You may consider the following accessories:
#1 Dual Cable Clip Wire Organizer
Having a poor cable management system can clog the airflow of the devices that you are using because of disorganized cables and wires. If the cables are located under a desk, they can cause back pain because you need to bend your body to untangle the wires. To avoid this, you may want to consider having wire organizers to improve your cable management system.
These wire organizers can help you create a clean and organized work environment, especially if you are using a standing desk. To pick the best wire organizers, you may choose something that can stick to almost any surface, including glass, metal, plastic, and wood.
What are the benefits of using this accessory aside from it organizes the cables and wires? Below are the answers:
- It gives better access to cables and devices. If you have several devices connected to your computer, accessing them could be difficult if you cannot find the correct wires attached to these devices. Organizing the wires from untangled cables can consume your time — decreasing your work efficiency.
- It improves troubleshooting. Sometimes, malfunctions can happen on your computers. Troubleshooting your device is one way to make it function again. Most of the time, troubleshooting involves testing the data cable to ensure that it is working correctly or it is in good condition. However, if the wires are disorganized, troubleshooting the network could be difficult.
- It provides safety. Anyone can trip over tangled wires and cables, which may result in accidents and injuries. If the unorganized cables are left unchecked for a long time, it may lead to sparks that can cause wire. To prevent this, organizing your cords should be taken into consideration.
#2 Adjustable CPU Holder for Under Desk Mount
When it comes to improving your workstation for ergonomic purposes, you may want to look at the benefits of using a CPU holder. It is mentioned earlier that there are standing desks that can be adjusted depending on your height. If you got one at your home or in your office, you could associate it with a CPU holder. Here are some reasons you should take into consideration:
- It maximizes your space. If you have limited space for your working station, having a CPU holder can save you space. You don’t need to place your CPU on top of your desk or the floor because you can install it under your stand-up desk. It does not only save you space, but it can make your office look cleaner and more organized.
- It prevents you from bending or kneeling. If something happens on your computer and you need to troubleshoot it, you may need to check your CPU or cable wires. Reaching the back of your computer could not be an easy task if the CPU is placed on the floor. You have to bend, kneel, or crouch on the ground to find what you are looking for. With a CPU holder, you do not have to do these things since you can keep your CPU closer to you.
- It provides computer safety. One of the primary causes of computer failure is dust. Your computer gathers dust because of the fan-driven air movement, which is essential to keep your computer processor to stay cool. It also keeps your computer from overheating. However, the air movement can cause your CPU to collect dust because of the electrostatic charges which are generated from electrical activities. Having a CPU holder can solve this problem since you don’t need to place it on the floor, and you can mount it under your standing desk instead.
- It serves as protection. Most of the time, CPUs are placed on the floor. The problem with putting your CPU on the area is it is susceptible to dirt and dust. To keep the CPU from dirt, using a CPU holder could be one of your best picks. Besides, having it also protects your CPU from bumps or spills.
#3 Ergonomic Comfort Floor Mats / Anti-Fatigue Mats
Standing for long hours can cause you discomfort. It can be prevented with the use of anti-fatigue floor mats. There are several anti-fatigue mats to choose from. Some are manufactured with a rubber surface to prevent slippage. Others are designed to be highly resistant to chemicals and grease. There are also floor mats that have scientific designs to overcome the detrimental effects of heeled shoes.
Why purchase an anti-fatigue mat?
It is an essential accessory if you are using a stand-up desk at your home or your work. Having one could provide you with the following health benefits:
- It alleviates body stress and back pain. Anti-fatigue floor mats with sloped surfaces help you improve your posture because it requires a certain pelvic and lumbar spine angles when standing. With proper stance, you can keep your body from muscle strains — leading to a less extreme working environment. Instead of standing on solid surfaces like tiles or concrete, standing on anti-fatigue floor mats can provide more comfort.
- It improves blood circulation. Standing on solid surfaces provides more stress to your feet and legs. With anti-fatigue floor mats, you can alleviate the strain on your joints and muscles, which promotes better blood circulation. It is vital to have a proper blood circulation because it supplies oxygen to the brain and other organs — making it one of the essential functions in the body.
- It keeps you safe. Standing on tiles or concrete can pose a danger when there are chemicals or grease spilled on the floor. Using an anti-fatigue floor mat can keep you safe because most mats today are designed with rubber surface.
Prolonged sitting or standing is associated with several diseases that can cause severe damage to the body if not given proper attention. Correcting your posture requires a lot of effort and should be practiced daily. Some tools and accessories can help you improve your stance while working. Switching to ergonomic accessories could help you create a safer, cleaner, and more organized work environment. It might be a small step in changing your sedentary life; however, incorporating ergonomics in your lifestyle offers many health benefits that can make a significant impact on your life.