Ergonomics is the science of fitting workplace conditions and job demands to the capabilities of the working population. Effective and successful “fits” assure high productivity, avoidance of illness and injury risks, and increased satisfaction among the workforce.
Static Computer Workstation Guidelines
If you spend a majority of your time at a computer workstation, here are some general guidelines to consider:
- ❖ If you wear glasses or contacts, have a routine (annual) eye exam to make sure that eye strain is being reduced. Tell your eye doctor that you work in front of a VDT routinely, and need the appropriate lenses.
- ❖ Place your monitor directly in front of you, and at a height that reduces head/neck tilting up or down. The monitor should be between 20-28 inches away depending upon your visual acuity.
- ❖ Place the mouse and keyboard directly in front of you in a position that allows a 90 degree bend and relaxed shoulders during use. Many times an adjustable keyboard tray may need to be utilized to achieve the desired position.
- ❖ Learn the fit adjustments available on your chair. Some features to look for include: seat back/pan adjustment, lumbar adjustment, and arm rest adjustment.
- ❖ Keep your phone, or other frequently used items within close reach to avoid awkward work postures and reaching.
- ❖ Take frequent breaks from typing to avoid repetitive trauma. Reduce static posture by getting up from the chair frequently to speak with colleagues.
- ❖ If you use a sit-to-stand workstation, these guidelines still apply. In addition, there are also other considerations such as using a floor mat to reduce forces transferred to your feet.
Please review the images and video below for additional guidance.
Proper Lifting and Material Handeling Guidelines
Many jobs will require the occasional use of manual material handling to accomplish the task. If you spend any time at these type of tasks, here are some general guidelines to consider:
- ❖ If possible limit the weight and size of the load by breaking the material into portions. It is not recommended that individuals lift > 50 lbs. regardless of their strength. Always test the load before lifting, and know the approximate weight of the load.
- ❖ Use mechanical means to move the load whenever possible with (cart, forklift, wheels, etc.) Get help from a co-worker.
- ❖ Never twist with a load! This is one of the more common ways that people can hurt themselves.
- ❖ Exercise proper lifting technique: Approach directly in front of the load, Get close to the load, Bend with your knees and Use your legs to lift as you keep your back straight. Please see the two photos below!
- ❖ Your “Power Zone” is between your waist and shoulders. Keep items at this level.
- ❖ If you are a Supervisor, watch your work processes to identify potential lifting risk factors. Train your personnel in the safe lifting techniques to reduce injuries.
These guidelines are intended to give you some ideas on how to incorporate ergonomic principles into your daily work activities. We encourage you to contact the UNCG EH&S Department for an ergonomic consultation and review. If we all work together, we can reduce our exposure to ergonomic stressors and injuries!
More Help With Ergonomics
If you have a question about ergonomics, please contact: Todd Beck, firstname.lastname@example.org, (336) 334-4357.
Indoor Air Quality
What to do About Indoor Air Quality at Your Work Space
Complete an occupant interview form and send it via e-mail to email@example.com. In the body of your e-mail briefly describe where you work, your concerns, how to contact you and your supervisor.
The Safety Office will contact your supervisor or department head to schedule a time for the Phase I assessment of your work environment. Please reference our Indoor Air Quality Program for an explanation of the different phases of investigation.
Depending on the information obtained during the Phase I assessment, the investigation may be concluded or a Phase II assessment will be initiated. Your supervisor will be informed once an investigation is concluded or if Phase II assessment is needed.
Frequently Asked Questions