Improve Your Ergonomics to Improve Your Well-Being
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Health and Wellness

Improve Your Ergonomics to Improve Your Well-Being

To achieve ergonomics, the science of work and how it’s optimized for human well-being, scientists and designers look at the latest data to come up with products and suggestions to improve physical and mental health.

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man holding his head while sitting on chair near computer desk
Photo by Jason Strull on Unsplash

Ergonomics is the science of work and how it’s optimized for human well-being. When something is ergonomic, its design is optimized for human comfort and productivity when completing a required task, like going to work or traveling.

To achieve ergonomics, scientists and designers look at the latest data to come up with products and suggestions to improve physical and mental health.

There are three main categories of ergonomics: physical, cognitive and organizational. Here’s how you can use them to improve your well-being.

Physical Ergonomics

Physical ergonomics involves the physiological, anatomical, anthropometric and biomechanical parts of ergonomics. When you aren’t in an optimal position for a lengthy period, your health can suffer.

The parts of physical ergonomics include posture, how you handle materials, how often you move, your office layout and safety.

Poor physical ergonomics, you can suffer from problems like muscle tension and pain, carpal tunnel syndrome and eye strain.

Cognitive Ergonomics

Cognitive ergonomics involves your mental processes, such as memory and reasoning. It also affects your motor responses.

Elements of cognitive ergonomics include work stress, computer interactions, decision making and your skilled performance.

Without proper cognitive ergonomics, you risk suffering from psychological stress. This stress can make you feel anxious and unmotivated to continue your work.

Organizational Ergonomics

Organizational ergonomics involves the policies and processes involved in workplace structures thart affect health and well-being.

This type of ergonomics includes work schedules, start and end times, communication and workflow.

Without good organizational ergonomics, you can work efficiently with minimal stress by utilizing the systems provided.

Improving Ergonomics

Ergonomics affects your well-being, so you want to be aware of ways you can improve yours. Here are ways to improve your ergonomics that will affect your health and wellness.

Posture

Your posture can greatly effect how your body functions, making it a large part of ergonomics.

When you’re sitting up straight, be sure to relax your shoulders and adjust your arms so that your elbows are level with the keyboard. This helps keep your body in a neutral position.

To keep yourself sitting straight, you may need to raise your chair or use a footstool to keep your feet on a solid surface while being level with your workstation.

You might also consider raising your monitor or laptop do that your head faces directly forward, instead of having to crane your neck.

While you sit, you’ll want to keep your eyes leveled with the center of your computer monitor.

Eye Rest

When you’re constantly staring at a computer screen, you eyes can become tired and strained, leading to headaches and lasting effects.

To combat this, look away from the screens at a distant point for around 20 seconds every 20 minutes.

You should also keep between 16 and 30 inches between your eyes and the screen.

Ergonomic Seating

Your chair can make or break your ergonomic set-up.

If you are able, invest in a chair that’s ergonomically designed for long work days. You want to be able to have you bottom pressed against the back of your chair, your lower back supported and places to rest your head and neck.

If you’re unable to purchase a chair now, you can use a small cushion or rolled up towel to support your lower back.

Movement

They say sitting is the new smoking because sitting for lengthy periods of time without movement is damaging to your health.

Normalize standing up and walking around every 20 to 30 minutes just to stretch and get your muscles in different positions.

You can also move while at your desk. Adjustable desks allow you to sit or stand while working, keeping your mobility options open. You can also exercise underneath your desk by doing heel stretches or purchasing and under-desk exerciser.

Another way to stay moving is to connect movements to certain actions. For example, whenever you finish an email, stand for a minute.

Taking regular breaks also helps you clear your mind when you’re feeling stressed, reducing the risk of you becoming overwhelmed.

Advocating

You might be limited in your power to create organizational ergonomics in your workplace, but advocating for these ergonomics can help improve your ergonomics. It’s also important to take advantage of the organizational ergonomics you’re offered.

Regular breaks allow you to get needed movement and mental relaxation. Having adaptive office equipment allows you to change your position throughout the day. Ergonomic computer monitors, mice and keyboards can reduce tension in your joints.

By having reasonable work hours, you can have a good work/life balance and reduce the mental stress that happens through work overload.

Improve your Well-being with Ergonomics

By focusing on improving your economics, you can improve your overall well-being.

Proper ergonomics allows you to keep physically and mentally healthy as you complete tasks.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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